Employee Storytelling

6 Types of Employee Stories to Attract Informed Candidates

Profile photo of Lori Sylvia
Written by Lori Sylvia
6 Types of Employee Stories to Attract Informed Candidates
5 (100%) 6 votes

Employee stories are the most effective type of Recruitment Marketing content because they give candidates an authentic, inside look at what it’s like to work for your company. Leveraging employees to tell the story of your company’s culture, values and impact will help attract informed candidates who are researching whether you might be a good fit as their next employer.

Sounds great, but who’s going to create all these employee stories, you might be asking? It can seem a bit daunting, if you haven’t crafted any employee stories before.

Rally is here to help you develop content marketing skills for recruiting!

We’ve put together 6 types of employee stories that will provide the information candidates are looking for throughout their candidate journey. You can create these employee stories without needing a lot of experience, budget or resources. All it takes is a few willing participants, a little courage (you’ve got this!) and the right interview topics that will get employees at your organization talking.

Before you start: When interviewing employees, a best practice is to record your conversation (with their permission, of course) or even better, take a video with your smartphone or camera. This way you’re “in the moment” during the interview and not worried about note-taking. You can manually transcribe the recording later yourself or use a free tool like Scribie or oTranscribe to transcribe for you (there are also paid transcription services like Speechpad or Dragon that will transcribe a bit more accurately). Then you can turn the recording into various content formats like blog posts, quotes to accompany photos, longer testimonials for your career site, and more.

6 Types of Employee Stories to Attract Informed Candidates

Employee Story Type #1: What the company’s values mean to them

Sharing stories about your company’s values can help candidates determine if they would thrive in the environment and if it’s worth their time to apply. There are many ways that you can spotlight your company’s values and how they’re practiced each day by your leadership and your employees. For instance, if one of your company values is “play as a team,” ask the employee to tell you about a time when their team or a teammate put ego aside and came through for them to meet a deadline.

Questions you can ask:

  • Where have you seen our company values in action?
  • How do our company values align with your own?
Employee Story Type #2: Why they joined and why they stay

Career change is a big decision. Having employees share why they chose your company (and continue to choose your company by staying!) may provide candidates with the proof they need to support making a job change themselves. For instance, does your company provide training and development programs and a record of promoting from within? Do people feel passionate about doing good work for your customers? These are benefits and qualities that informed candidates are researching when they visit your careers site and social channels.

Questions you can ask:

  • What made you decide to join?
  • Why did you think this company / role would be the right fit for you?
  • What keeps you working here?
Employee Story Type #3: Their career path before and since joining

When considering career change, many candidates are naturally curious about what their growth opportunities will look like with your company. Showcasing the internal mobility that employees have enjoyed is a great way to spotlight the career progression opportunities of joining your team. For instance, if your company has a training program, have an employee talk through their career path since completing their training, and the depth and breadth of experience they’ve gained over time.

Questions you can ask:

  • What kind of career growth (and promotions) have you experienced since joining?
  • Tell me about a time when you were challenged to grow in your skillset and capabilities.
  • Tell me about a new skill you’ve learned while working here.

Pro tip: It’s important that you only showcase stories if they accurately speak to the employee experience overall and aren’t outliers. Otherwise, you’re making false promises about your employer brand and employee experience that you can’t deliver on, which may result in unhappy hires who leave and negative reviews on job sites like Glassdoor, kununu and Indeed.

Employee Story Type #4: A day in the life of an employee in their role

Stories that break down the details of what it’s like to walk in the shoes of an employee at your organization provide the level of detail candidates crave. These types of stories paint the picture in a way that reduces the scary, unknown factors that can sometimes be a barrier for changing jobs. Plus, hiring managers value informed candidates who know what to expect. For instance, do employees have flexible working hours or is it a more definite start and stop time? What other teams will you work with and depend on to be successful? These are the types of questions that candidates are curious about that your employee stories can uniquely address.

Questions you can ask:

  • What does a typical day in your role look like?
  • What’s your favorite part of the work day / your job?
  • What’s the relationship like working with X team day to day?
Employee Story Type #5: Their contribution to a project, a customer, the industry, the world

People want to do work that matters. This is why employee stories that show candidates the type of impact your team has on your customers, your industry and even society can be so impactful. For instance, how does the work you do improve people’s lives? What contributions are you making to advance the industry you work in? Hearing an employee talking passionately about how they truly connect to the work they’re doing can inspire more great candidates to follow.

Questions you can ask:

  • Why does your work matter to you?
  • How do you help our customers improve their lives / improve their businesses?
Employee Story Type #6: An insider’s view that a candidate might not get from the interview process

Consider what’s important for candidates to know about your company, the team or the role for them to be successful, that may not come out during a typical interview process. For instance, what’s the best way to gain support for your ideas? How are mistakes or failures treated? A sure sign that your company is a great place to work is whether your employees are referring their colleagues and friends to join them. Find out why in your interview. Imagine the power of getting both employees in the same story!

Questions you can ask:

  • Tell me about an idea you had and how it was brought to life.
  • Tell me about something that didn’t work and what happened after.
  • Have you recommended working here to a friend? Why?

Want more best practices on creating and sharing employee stories to attract informed candidates? Here are 3 resources you can download:

Rally™ Ideabook: 18 Ways to Share Employee Stories, sponsored by The Muse

Rally™ Guide: How to Recruit with Employee Stories Featuring Citizens Bank, sponsored by TMP Worldwide

Rally™ Recommended Ebook: How to Recruit Informed Candidates at Scale, sponsored by Glassdoor

The Muse, TMP and Glassdoor are Rally sponsors. Their sponsorship fee helps us create educational content and events on Recruitment Marketing.

6 Types of Employee Stories to Attract Informed Candidates
5 (100%) 6 votes

About the Author

Profile photo of Lori Sylvia

Lori Sylvia

Recruitment Marketing evangelist and community builder. Founder of Rally.

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