As Recruitment Marketers, many of us need to do a lot of convincing and persuading in order to get things done. Recruitment Marketing is a newer discipline and there will likely be many people in your organization who don’t know a lot about what we do, why we do it or how they can help.
This is where change management comes into play.
Not a lot has been written on change management in a Recruitment Marketing context, but I think that there’s a lot that we as practitioners can learn from our HR peers who focus on change management.
I spent many years as a change management consultant, before gradually making my way into Talent Acquisition and Recruitment Marketing roles in the late 2000s. I use what I learned in change management all the time to help the Talent Acquisition Centre of Excellence I oversee at my company achieve success in our initiatives. And I’m going to share with you how we do it.
In my three-part series for Rally, I’m going to outline:
- What change management is and how it applies to different groups in a Talent Acquisition / Recruitment Marketing context
- Common change management techniques that you can use to get ahead
- A change management / Recruitment Marketing case study to show you how it works in action
So, first things first, what is change management?
Change management is really just want it sounds like. It’s the idea of guiding and managing change over time within an organization. With change management, the goal is to support and facilitate change, getting people to think or act differently in the workplace.
How does change management apply in a Recruitment Marketing context?
Talent Acquisition is changing! Many organizations are in the midst of transforming from a more traditional Talent Acquisition model to one that embraces more Recruitment Marketing approaches (even in roles that aren’t 100% dedicated to Recruitment Marketing, like recruiting and TA operations and technology positions).
Change management work helps people to make sense of this transformation and to adopt new behaviours that support a more effective recruiting approach that better responds to today’s digital-first and candidate-driven climate.
When considering change management in a Recruitment Marketing context, there’s a number of groups who may require strategies and support in order to shift their behaviours. These groups are:
- Hiring Managers
Change management for candidates
Recruitment Marketing activities often ask for candidates to interact with prospective employers in a way they haven’t done before. Recruitment Marketing sometimes requires that candidates adopt new behaviours during the job search or hiring process. Candidates need to be led through these changes and guided towards new behaviours in some instances, like, for example, on how and when to join an organization’s talent network, and what’s in it for them if they do.
Change management for recruiters
Today, recruiters need to borrow tools from the Recruitment Marketer’s toolkit in order to do their jobs most effectively. For Recruitment Marketers, it’s really important that recruiters are helped through this change and educated on why they should adapt so that your team can work together and support each other.
One example of this is moving away from a requisition by requisition based approach, to something broader like “evergreen” or campaign requisitions. Recruiters need to move away from a process-based, linear approach to recruiting to something a bit more dynamic. There needs to be an understanding that not all great hires are going to come from applications to a specific open requisition.
Connecting and interacting with candidates also needs to be approached differently, with a positive candidate experience now at the forefront. Recruiters should be guided through these changes, like being more active on social media, using landing pages to gather candidate details at events, sending nurture emails to candidates to keep them warm and much more.
Change management for hiring managers
Hiring managers too will need to be guided through significant changes in the job market. They will need to be educated on the candidate-driven market and given the tools to facilitate positive candidate experiences from awareness through onboarding.
Hiring managers need to learn that to stay top-of-mind as an employer, organizations need to place themselves in front of candidates even when there are no open requisitions. Often hiring managers are pretty good at sharing product or company info on social media, but they will benefit from being guided on how and why they should share careers content too.
Change management for leadership
Leadership can require quite a lot of change management in a Recruitment Marketing context. Many executives have not applied for a job in 25 years, so they are unaware of how drastically the hiring landscape has changed (and how significantly Talent Acquisition teams need to adapt as a result).
Executive change management can be tough, but this is arguably the most important group to influence correctly. Leadership buy-in is essential to start a Recruitment Marketing function, get enough budget to have an impact, and to launch Recruitment Marketing campaigns or other high-visibility initiatives.
This group is also really important to get on board early because they will certainly make the work of influencing and managing change with hiring managers and recruiters easier if you already have buy-in and klout from above.
All in all, change management can be a really useful lens to use in order to encourage your whole team to work together more efficiently and to put candidate engagement at the center of your recruiting and Recruitment Marketing initiatives.
I hope this blog post gave you some good food for thought on how and why change management is useful for Recruitment Marketers to consider. In my next change management blog post, I’ll overview some specific techniques that you can adopt in order to influence and manage change within your Talent Acquisition team and your organization.
In the meantime, if you have questions or comments about change management in a Recruitment Marketing context, feel free to connect with me on LinkedIn.