Collaborating with Marketing is essential to ensure that your employer brand and consumer brand are aligned. Today, it’s even more critical that Marketing and Recruitment Marketing stay closely connected so that we can communicate externally with a single voice and message.
One organization that has gotten this partnership right is Nestlé. The Rally team interviewed recruiting and marketing leaders from Nestlé to learn more about how they’ve built a successful working relationship.
Meet the experts
Ashton Shoemaker is the Recruiting Manager for Campus, Brand & Capability for Nestlé USA. Her team is responsible for leading recruitment marketing initiatives and campus recruiting strategy and execution.
Liz Caselli-Mechael is the Digital + Content Communications Lead for Nestlé USA. Her team is responsible for external digital platforms for Nestlé’s corporate and employer brand, as well as a range of internal employee communications initiatives. They partner with Ashton’s team on external Recruitment Marketing activities.
Here are five tips that we learned from Ashton and Liz that may prove helpful as you bring Marketing and Recruitment Marketing together at your organization.
1) Be a teacher and a student
Many marketers don’t know that much about Recruitment Marketing yet. And if they don’t fully understand the space, then they won’t be able to partner with you effectively.
As Talent Acquisition professionals, we have the chance to change this. You might consider scheduling in a kick-off call to share what you know about Recruitment Marketing and learn about your Marketing team’s priorities. This way, you can both understand each other’s perspective and identify the mutual benefits of working together.
Liz from the Communications team at Nestlé shares that prior to partnering with recruiting, she didn’t know a lot about the Recruitment Marketing world. She says, “While I had a passion for corporate culture and social responsibility, I’d never worked on recruiting initiatives before.” Liz was open to learning, though, and quickly realized that the way you behave towards candidates and employees makes a significant impact on your overall corporate identity.
And during the difficult times we’re facing today; this holds more true than ever. Marketing can help you to create strong candidate and employee communications that get the right message across and position your company in a positive light during this challenging time.
This video is a good examples of how Liz and Ashton have taken company news and product stories and also highlighted the employee experience.
RallyFwd speaker Charlotte Marshall also talks about how employer brand can influence the employee experience, and vice versa, in her article, 3 Ways Your Employer Brand Can Re-Recruit Employees.
2) Agree on what a great partnership looks like
Once you’ve taken the time to connect and understand each other’s priorities, it’s a good idea to establish exactly what partnering together will look like moving forward. The clearer you can get here, the better.
Ashton from the Talent Acquisition team at Nestlé explains, “At the beginning of the relationship, it’s a good idea to establish a collective vision, clear goals and a general process roadmap.”
Identifying what each of you is looking to get out of the partnership, and how you’ll work together to get there, is essential to making sure you can partner productively in both the short and long term.
Ideally, you should set a few combined SMART (Smart – Measurable – Attainable – Realistic – Time-Bound) goals that overview exactly what you’re looking to achieve together. In Nestlé’s case, the includes KPIs on prospective talent engagement as well as how potential candidates move through the recruitment funnel. You should also be aware of what each other’s larger goals are outside of the context of your shared goals. This way, you can look for opportunities to best support each other over time.
Learn more from Natasha Makovora on how to partner with marketing to achieve your Recruitment Marketing goals.
From there, you’ll also want to establish what working together will look like:
- Who owns what part of the content creation or publishing process?
- What sort of things need to be sent over to the other group for input or approvals?
- Are there any other stakeholders who need to be involved?
- What kind of timelines should each team expect for different tasks throughout the process?
These are all good areas to talk through and get down in writing at the outset to make sure things go smoothly.
Here’s an example of content collaboration on an Ask Me Anything video series, this one featuring Nestlé USA CEO Steve Presley.
3) Stay closely connected with regular meetings
Speaking of process, the Nestlé team advises that it’s a great idea to build regular meeting times into your collaborative process.
“We have at least one planning meeting a week where we share the upcoming content calendar from the marketing and employer brand side, get updates on upcoming needs from the recruitment side and brainstorm together on upcoming challenges,” explains Liz.
Staying in touch between these meetings is important too. Using tools like Slack or Microsoft Teams can be a great way to share and request reports, plans, and draft copy or visuals on an ongoing basis.
4) Recognize and respect each other’s expertise
Each group has a different area of expertise and knowledge that can strengthen the way the other team approaches their work. Ashton advises that teams can take advantage of this by “sharing challenges and ideas, asking questions, and leveraging one another’s areas of expertise.”
What kinds of things do the Nestlé team learn from each other?
The Talent Acquisition team benefits from Marketing’s digital platform and content knowledge, along with their digital testing abilities for ongoing learning and insights that can be applied to the candidate journey.
On the flip side, the Marketing team benefits from the fact that the Talent Acquisition team has such an intimate knowledge of the target audience they’re looking to attract, which helps with fine-tuning content creation and targeting efforts.
“I think one thing that made our collaboration work well was that our Marketing team was truly hungry for recruiting input – who should we be targeting, what skillsets do we need, what seems to be resonating with our top candidates,” expands Liz. “And the Talent Acquisition team was hungry for digital insights – how are we measuring our impact and how can we better capture our culture. This combined interest made every interaction across the teams really driven, high-energy, and symbiotic.”
This is an example of collaborating to create a blog post to help demystify the application process while giving candidates some insight into Nestlé values. Ashton and Liz used their combined expertise in understanding the recruiting process and the candidate mindset with good content marketing and SEO.
5) Lean on each other
As per tip #4, your two teams will have different strengths. Take advantage of this and ask for help and resources as needed to improve in the areas where your group might have less experience. Beyond that, you can support each other by using some of the content and work that the other team is producing, rather than always building everything out from scratch.
Ashton shares, “Our Talent Acquisition team leverages content from the communications team and repurposes the messaging to nurture our talent communities. We also rely on the expertise of the communications team to ensure Recruitment Marketing efforts are aligned to the master brand.”
Similarly, on the Marketing side, Liz explains, “I heavily use function and role-specific content and insights from the Talent Acquisition side, as well as audience insights and strategies around their talent segments.”
And, of course, beyond turning to your colleagues for specific work-based insights and support, remember that you can also turn to each other for other types of support during these rocky times. We are all going through this together, and having the opportunity to socialize and grab a quick Zoom coffee to hear how the other person’s day is going can help cheer up an otherwise gloomy morning.
We hope these tips from Liz and Ashton are helpful for your own Marketing and Recruitment Marketing partnership. Working together will result in a stronger content strategy and a unified brand, and will enable each team to achieve more together than it could on its own.