Launching into a new Recruitment Marketing role can be overwhelming. You need to learn the ins and outs of a new business, get familiar with different processes, acclimate to your new team/work culture, begin to identify opportunities for improvement, and determine what you’ll prioritize first. And, that’s not even taking into account that many people you’ll be working with are entirely new to the field of Recruitment Marketing!
If you’re about to start a new Recruitment Marketing job, it’s good to have a strong game plan for how to approach this ramp-up period.
Having made a recent transition myself to Cox Enterprises, I thought it might be beneficial to share some first-hand experience and advice that should help you successfully launch this next step in your Recruitment Marketing career.
Prioritize your learning
When I’m coming into a new org, my first priority is to listen and learn from my new colleagues. I want to learn as much as possible about how the business functions, and how talent acquisition operates.
I want to really take the time to learn the product or service the company offers, what the customers look like, what type of work is done and how it’s done. When you have a strong understanding of how the business functions, it’s easier to identify the types of candidates your team should attract.
Don’t come in with too many pre-conceived notions, either. Listen – really listen – in your first few weeks and think of yourself like a sponge; just try to soak it all in.
Build relationships with HR and Marketing
I like to schedule as many meet-and-greets as possible to get to know my new colleagues. I start first in the HR space, then focus next on Marketing, and then with key business leaders.
The most effective Recruitment Marketing functions have good relationships with Marketing and their Corporate/External Communications teams. This relationship will help you align your Employer Brand and your Consumer Brand and create a much stronger brand overall – something your Marketing team will be keen on.
Audit the current landscape
The first 30-60-90 days of any new job are important. While you’re listening to others and making some observations, understand that you are also being assessed to some degree. Did they make the right hire? It’s up to you to prove they did! And, because it’s a relatively new discipline, we’ve got a lot to prove, don’t we?
Over the last five years or so of my career, I’ve gotten very adept at quickly identifying red flags and areas of opportunity where I can make a positive impact. To do that, I take the approach of conducting my own personal Recruitment Marketing audit, where I focus on:
- The candidate experience: Walk in the candidate’s shoes. Is it easy to find our jobs online? What does it look like on a mobile phone? How is our brand communicated throughout the experience, and where are you getting frustrated? Take your time, and take this seriously. Don’t rush through it.
- The current employer brand reputation: What are candidates saying about us and what do our ratings look like?
- The careers website: What content is housed on our careers site and how do the pages flow? Does the design feel modern, or does it look like it’s from 2002?
- Content: How are you sharing your employer brand key messaging? What should you be sharing instead? And, what channels are we using to share this message?
- Job descriptions: Are the job descriptions concise? Do they inspire action (i.e., an application)? Are the titles clear and SEO-friendly, or filled with jargon?
- Tools, technology and partners: Who are our vendor partners? This could be your ATS, your CRM, your website, agency, media vendors, etc. Also, when do contracts expire?
- Money and ROI: How are we spending our money? What kind of return on investment are we seeing?
The secret here is that I’ve done a lot of this homework already when I’m in my own phase as a candidate. But once I’m on the inside, it’s an opportunity to dive deeper and get the perspectives of my colleagues to really peel back the layers.
Demonstrate value to leadership through ‘quick wins’
After I run an audit and have conversations with my teammates (remember to LISTEN more than you talk), I present to leadership my early thoughts and recommendations. I’ll include a few items that I consider low-hanging fruit here too. These are tasks or small projects that can be ticked off quickly to build trust and show that I can execute.
While you’re eager to prove you can deliver, it’s important to manage expectations. I try to deliver on one to two tasks in 30 days, in 60 days, and again within 90 days.
Your quick wins should depend on what you’ve uncovered during your own audit. In my recent move to Cox Enterprises, three of my early priorities included:
- Hiring and stabilizing my team: I had two team members decide to leave the company before I joined so finding the right replacements and stabilizing my own team was critical.
- Improve our CRM: We had a CRM in place, but it was a wasteland of inactivity. I wanted to change that over the course of a few short phases.
- Vendor renewals: Making sure our vendor contracts weren’t expiring unexpectedly and we were renewing where it made sense; not renewing where it didn’t.
Remember, it’s important to deliver on your commitments so that your leadership and your colleagues will know you can move on to bigger and more strategic initiatives.
Respect your predecessors
One last bit of advice – make sure to be mindful about how you refer to things you want to change or fix. It’s all too possible that someone on your team may have put a lot of effort into the item you’re looking to improve, so make sure to respect their past contributions (or those of their former co-workers).
You’ve got this!
Hopefully my experiences have given you some useful tips on how to approach the first few months in a new role. I try to learn all I can, build relationships, audit key Recruitment Marketing activities, report on areas for improvement, and provide my early recommendations to leadership.
You might bring a different set of approaches, based on your own past experiences and goals for a new Recruitment Marketing position. Just know that if you take the time to consider what your first steps should look like, you’ll be ready to launch things the right way and make a great impression from day one!