Your employee experience — while being a key internal driver for satisfaction, productivity and engagement — is also one of your top tools for talent attraction. In today’s competitive job marketplace, communicating your employee experience can be a deciding factor for candidates on whether or not to apply.
But are you showing your true, authentic employee experience in your Recruitment Marketing content? Or are you just presenting job seekers with a picture of what you wish your employee experience was like?
Being authentic in your employee experience messaging presents talent with a clear and thorough representation of what being a part of your company is like. Along with boosting your talent attraction strategy, this authenticity also can improve employee retention. A study by the Futurestep division of Korn Ferry revealed that 90% of executives say between 10% and 25% of new employees leave their organizations within the first 6 months. The top reason? Their expectations from their candidate experience don’t match up to their employee experience once they are on board, including their job responsibilities and the resources they’re given.
This means authenticity in your employee experience is more important than ever in recruiting. And that also goes for the aspects that might not be so attractive! This “warts and all” approach is one based on honesty and transparency, and gives your company a chance to show how you’re working to solve the less-than-appealing elements of the experience you provide.
Here’s how you can create an authentic employee experience along with a self-audit checklist to ensure that your talent attraction strategy sets the right expectations with candidates:
Employee experience vs. company culture
The first thing to know is that the employee experience isn’t the company culture. Instead, they share a symbiotic relationship. The culture is part of and supports the experience that team members have within your organization. In turn, a positive experience increases satisfaction, productivity and engagement, all of which contribute to a stronger company culture.
Authenticity in your employee experience isn’t solely about showing your company culture. You need to also demonstrate how your company is committed to the health and success of your employees through the right physical working environment, resources and tools to help them get their jobs done.
Give your employees the mic
To truly bring out the authenticity, make sure your employee experience messaging comes directly from the ones who matter most — your employees. Inserting your company voice into the mix won’t bring out the true picture, and candidates are likely to spot it a mile away. Put your employees in the spotlight — whether in videos, photos, blogs or other content formats. Have them share their insight into what it’s like to be a true part of the team, and ask them not to shy away from those elements that might not be the most attractive to candidates. If employees can talk about how your company is working to change these less appealing elements, you’re succeeding at being authentic.
Create recognition and advocacy programs
Rewarding employees for their hard work and dedication is a key factor in developing an excellent experience for them. Recognition programs that celebrate their value and accomplishments show job seekers that you are invested in helping them succeed.
Additionally, creating an advocacy initiative that gives employees the right tools to share their experiences brings authenticity to the forefront. Through their stories, employees can share why they like working as part of your team with talent and can showcase their recognized achievements to generate more awareness about the experience you provide.
Highlight your contributions
The programs and resources your company offers to create exceptional employee experiences can be an important part of your talent attraction strategy. For example, an onboarding process that equips new employees with everything they need to get started on the right foot sets a strong foundation. Learning and development opportunities to build new skills and test them out are a key factor that many job seekers look for. Diversity and inclusion policies and practices are yet another consideration for candidates and work toward crafting an excellent experience for employees. It’s a good idea to ask your employees to share their insight on these initiatives in their messaging.
Authentic employee experience checklist
Use this checklist when going through your employee experience content to ensure that you’re focusing on authenticity:
- Wording and language: Read through your careers site pages to make sure the language being used accurately reflects the experience you provide. If your company’s logo or other identifiable elements weren’t displayed, would this truly sound like your organization?
- Photos: Many stock photos are instantly recognizable, and if you’re using them, candidates will be wondering why your employees don’t want to be featured. Take photos of real employees in their actual working environments to bring out more authenticity.
- Job descriptions: Job descriptions help to set candidate expectations, but many talk too much about the company. Do your job descriptions give job seekers what they’re looking for, which is important information about what they’ll do and the impact they’ll make? Ask someone in the role to review the description and let you know if you’re presenting the reality or potentially misleading people.
- Social media: Posts written in “company speak” won’t do a good job of communicating your authenticity. Make sure you’re sharing employee-based content about what’s happening in your offices and on your teams. Also, encourage your employees to share their experiences on their own social profiles (and skip the waiver signing, which stifles any authenticity).
If you attempt to share an employee experience that isn’t what you actually provide, your chances of attracting candidates and retaining employees significantly drops. Striking a chord with job seekers starts with being real and presenting a true picture of your company, and when it comes to the employee experience, the more authentic you are, the better.