The reason that ROI is such a big topic in Recruitment Marketing is because it’s personal. Anytime you talk about measuring the effectiveness of a campaign, a program or a channel, it’s a reflection of your strategy, your ability and, well, you. Because most of you are new in your role or the first champion of Recruitment Marketing at your company, let’s be honest: You’re not only proving the value of Recruitment Marketing as a strategy, but your own value to the organization.
There’s an added complication: You’re probably not working for someone with a marketing background. That means they’re not sure what they should even expect from Recruitment Marketing and from you. On top of that, the rest of the Talent Acquisition and HR team (and hiring managers and leadership) are probably wondering what it is that you do all day. It can feel at times that you’re speaking a different language (you kinda are).
As you can tell, this is a topic that’s personal to me too. I’ve been there. The first to bring modern marketing practices to a company. Working for someone who wasn’t a marketer. Having my leadership and my peers question the value of my strategies and ideas. Showing my results but them not “getting it.” Those early days were absolutely disheartening.
Recently, I teamed up with Kristina Finseth, Content Marketing Lead at PhenomPeople, to tackle this very important topic during our Recruitment Marketing ROI Webinar, now available on demand. Of all the webinars I’ve spoken on, I could tell this one touched a nerve. I received a lot of questions during the webinar with even more practitioners reaching out afterwards (P.S. – please keep reaching out – I’ll always do what I can to support you!).
Again, this is personal, so let’s look at 5 ways that you can not only show Recruitment Marketing ROI, but demonstrate your value as a Recruitment Marketing practitioner.
5 Ways to Demonstrate the Value of Recruitment Marketing
1 – Show how your Recruitment Marketing efforts contribute to broader Talent Acquisition goals
You’re not working on an island, so show your leadership and your team how your Recruitment Marketing programs and initiatives support the overall Talent Acquisition goals for the year.
For example, if your Talent Acquisition goals are to increase the number of sales hires this fiscal year, then your strategy and action plans should support this through campaigns, programs and content that target sales candidates. The ROI you capture and report on should then illustrate how Recruitment Marketing is helping TA increase sales talent pipelines and ultimately hires.
Let’s say there is a conference in Chicago that attracts top sales talent. You might run a social ad geo-targeted to that location during the conference with content that will hit home with this persona that leads to a landing page for sales careers. Report on the bump in sales applicants that your campaign drove during the week.
2 – Prove Recruitment Marketing value by focusing on outcomes, not activities or metrics
Avoid this common mistake: reporting on activities and metrics, not on outcomes. Whenever I speak with a member of the Rally community, I ask them how they’re being measured and what they report on to leadership.
First, hardly anyone has been given RM goals (proof point that leadership doesn’t know what to expect), and second, they’re reporting on what I consider activities and metrics.
By the way, many marketers do the same thing. They’ll report on activities like the number of new content assets they created, and then share metrics like how many people viewed or clicked on that content. That’s important for you to know, but not what leadership cares about.
Here’s a visualization of what I mean by activities versus metrics versus outcomes:
For Recruitment Marketing to mature as a discipline, it’s gonna require all of us to focus on the outcomes that our work is having. In other words, how is Recruitment Marketing helping the company meet its hiring goals?
Ask yourself: What contacts, applicants, screens and hires are resulting from your initiatives and the budget you have? This type of information is what will persuade internal leadership that Recruitment Marketing is driving results and is worth even more investment and resources. (BTW, this is exactly what your marketing colleagues are doing: Showing how their programs directly drive sales leads and new customers.)
(In our Recruitment Marketing ROI Webinar, now available on demand, I talk about the importance of tracking links to the future of Recruitment Marketing attribution.)
3 – Deliver on a highly visible project like improving your careers site
Your careers site is the #1 place candidates go to learn about your company, according to the Talent Board. And it’s also the most visible property that Talent Acquisition owns. If you want to demonstrate your value, take the lead to deliver improvements that will make your team love your careers page again (hey, we’ve got a webinar coming up on Sept. 6, 2018, on this very topic: [Webinar] Love Your Careers Page again – register here).
What are the results you can share after doing this? Investing in a better careers site and job descriptions should increase site visitor traffic, reduce the bounce rate and boost applicant numbers. You can track this by using Google Analytics, a recruitment marketing platform, and applicant data from your ATS. Plus by improving the content to align better with your employer value proposition, you’ll boost the number of informed candidates and increase overall quality of hire.
Here are some additional Rally resources that will help you understand what to focus on for careers site improvements, and how to uncover the results of your efforts:
- 12 Features of an Appealing Careers Page
- 3 Career Sites Where Employees Shine
- 5 Ways to Level Up Your Job Descriptions
- How to Use Google Analytics to Improve Your Recruitment Marketing Efforts
4 – Align Recruitment Marketing to something strategic like diversity & inclusion
This is a great area to showcase the value of Recruitment Marketing because Diversity & Inclusion is such a major focus for many organizations. Being able to help impact your organization’s efforts here is a highly visible way to get the value of your work recognized.
There are 6 things you can do to make an impact on your company’s Diversity & Inclusion initiatives:
- Know your organization’s Diversity & Inclusion goals. Once you know the goals you can plan out your Recruitment Marketing campaigns and activities that support them.
- Audit your EVP to ensure that you’re communicating messaging that’s attractive and welcoming to all.
- Update your candidate personas to ensure you’re targeting a diverse audience and that you’ve considered their needs, pain points and behaviors.
- Review your messaging to make sure images and copy are resonating with target personas.
- Check your presence: are you reaching the right diverse audiences? Time to change your channels?
- Create and share reports to show leadership how Recruitment Marketing is contributing to Diversity & Inclusion goals.
You can find out more information on how to positively influence Diversity & Inclusion efforts in the blog post I wrote on the topic: How to Align Recruitment Marketing to Your Diversity & Inclusion Objectives.
5 – Help solve a big challenge like recruiting for hard-to-fill roles
A last piece of advice for demonstrating Recruitment Marketing ROI: focus on a big challenge that your recruiters are facing like hard-to-fill roles.
Showing your recruiters how your Recruitment Marketing strategy is driving candidates to them and filling their pipelines will win you friends for life. They’ll have your back by becoming advocates of your work and supporting you in getting more Recruitment Marketing resources (which will in turn improve the outcomes you’re seeing!).
We recently held a great webinar with Kelly Piccininni from Northside Hospital and Jessica Summerfield from Advocate Aurora Health on how Recruitment Marketing can help support hard-to-fill roles. Watch our webinar: Hard-to-Fill Roles, Fulfilled! on demand here for strategies that actually work.
Looking for more resources?
We’re hosting a one-day, in-person workshop in 4 U.S. cities this fall in partnership with TextRecruit, Workable, Stories Incorporated, ViziRecruiter and The Muse. We’ll be teaching content marketing best practices to help you improve the ROI you’re seeing! Attendees will walk away with a content strategy and game plan for success in the form of their own Recruitment Marketing Content Playbook filled with great Rally templates. You can find out more by visiting Rally Workshop: Create Your Recruitment Marketing Content Playbook.
Don’t hesitate to reach out if there are other ways we can help you demonstrate Recruitment Marketing ROI!