What does it take to become an award-winning recruitment marketer in the Rally® Awards? And what career tips can we learn from the 2020 Recruitment Marketer of the Year?
Rally Founder Lori Sylvia had a virtual Q&A with our very first Recruitment Marketer of the Year winner, Chloé Rada, to find out!
If you’d like to learn more about the Rally Awards, view our independent panel of peer judges and see all of the other 2020 award winners, you can take a look at the Rally Awards website.
About Chloé Rada – the 2020 Rally Awards Recruitment Marketer of the Year
Chloé Rada has served as a Recruitment Marketing practitioner, innovator, leader and mentor for nearly 20 years. Today, Chloé is the Director of Talent Administration, Technology and Branding, at Sodexo, where she and her team are constantly executing on innovative and data-led Recruitment Marketing strategies.
Chloé got her introduction to Recruitment Marketing working at her father’s advertising agency, Rada Advertising. She worked there for close to a decade before moving in-house with Sodexo, where she has spent the last 8 years of her career.
Chloé is also one of the founding volunteers (and now board member) for the Association for Talent Acquisition Professionals (ATAP), where she formed and guided the association’s Marketing committee. Chloé has also held board positions with STAR Chicago (a former SHRM chapter) as the President and VP of Marketing.
Chloé’s award-winning work
Chloé was nominated for the 2020 Recruitment Marketer of the Year because of her career achievements and impact on the industry. Some of her notable accomplishments include:
- Optimizing the Sodexo CRM to improve the internal stakeholder and candidate experience
- Enhancing their branding dashboard with improved talent marketing and acquisition metrics to better quantify ROI
- Leveraging data to improve media partner spend, including using an improved “qualified hire” metric alongside cost per applicant to confirm the cost-efficiency of each partner
- Migrating their careers blog to a new platform, resulting in a 173% increase in page views
- Continuously up-skilling and improving her team’s performance by being an excellent people leader
- Mentoring other practitioners through speaking at HR conferences and her work in industry associations
- Making informed improvements to the Sodexo talent acquisition tech ecosystem
Q&A with Chloé
LS: Congratulations on your well-deserved Recruitment Marketer of the Year Award! I can’t think of a practitioner who would be a better choice to receive the first award! Can you tell our community about your career journey and how you gained the experience that led to your receiving this award?
CR: Thank you so much! Yes, definitely.
So my career journey is an interesting one, I think. I like to joke that I was pretty much born into the Recruitment Marketing industry!
While I started off my career early on in PR, I decided to join the family business a few years into my career. I worked on recruitment advertising strategies for clients at my dad’s agency, Rada Advertising. When I first started in this space in the early 2000s, newspaper job ads were still a thing — we’ve definitely come a long way since then!
After working at Rada Advertising for 10 years, my dad decided to dissolve the business and retire. At that point, I really wanted to move in-house to support one brand and see the fruits of my labor long term. This led to my joining Sodexo, where I’ve been happily employed for more than 8 years now!
LS: Wow, it’s really special that you got to work alongside your dad and that you learned the ropes from him! Having worked in this space for 20 years, what would you say you enjoy most about Recruitment Marketing?
CR: I think what I enjoy the most is the fact that our industry is always changing because job seeker needs and behaviors online are always advancing. This means things never get boring!
More specifically, I really love being on the forefront of emerging technologies. I like trying out new platforms and piloting promising tech early on. I think in our space there is a big advantage to taking risks and being the first player to try out a new approach or translate an idea from Consumer Marketing to Recruitment Marketing.
LS: And right there is one of the key reasons you were recognized with this award—being a pioneer takes vision and courage — and you have both! What do you think has helped you to be successful in Recruitment Marketing?
CR: I think there are two different reasons why I’ve been lucky enough to carve out some success in this space.
First off, I’ve built a really large professional network of staffing and recruitment professionals over the years. That network has honestly shaped who I am professionally!
One of the ways that I built this network was by volunteering on professional boards. I sat on the board for STAR Chicago (a former SHRM chapter) for numerous years. After Rada Advertising closed, I turned to this network for support and advice on where to go next. Today, I continue to sit on the board for the Association of Talent Acquisition Professionals (ATAP).
Belonging to these organizations has provided me with confidence, leadership and self-management skills. It’s also given me the chance to stay on top of what’s working and what matters to candidates and organizations today. Sitting on the ATAP board now is also my chance to give back in the same way that others in the community helped me out earlier on in my career.
Outside of volunteerism, the second thing that has helped me to succeed in Recruitment Marketing is my continuous desire to learn. I’m a very curious person! This propels me to keep trying new things and improving the status quo, which I think is really essential to the dynamic world of Recruitment Marketing. If you’re reading this and you’re new to marketing strategies, then I highly recommend taking advantage of all the resources available in the Rally community to learn new skills in Recruitment Marketing, employer branding and candidate experience. We need more people like you to help take us to the next level.
LS: I love how much you’ve given back to this community and the impact you’ve made on the discipline of Recruitment Marketing! Speaking of which, do you have any career tips for people just starting out or looking to move into a dedicated Recruitment Marketing role?
CR: Yes, absolutely! My tip would be to get further connected to the community to support you on your journey. Build relationships with other practitioners with whom you feel comfortable asking questions and getting advice.
The beautiful thing about Recruitment Marketing professionals is that we all tend to want to support each other, since we’re all building this space together. Most of us are pretty keen to help newbies out, so don’t be shy to reach out!
In addition to Rally Recruitment Marketing, there are a couple of Facebook groups that are particularly active like The Employer Brand Forum and The Talent Brand Alliance.
LS: Great tips, thanks Chloé. Next question for you: what past work are you most excited about or proud of?
CR: Good question… there are a few projects that stand out to me.
Firstly, when I originally joined Sodexo, our employer branding ecosystem was really in its infancy. So I’m proud of how much we’ve matured our marketing methods and tech tools over the years. Being able to grow this ecosystem has enabled us to access more data, track benchmarks and rely on metrics to improve ROI.
Secondly, I’m excited about the fact that my team was an early adopter of an employee advocacy tool for recruiting purposes. Social sharing is now part of our company’s DNA. Employee-shared social content now contributes to 61 million+ social views per year!
Thirdly, and most recently, I’m proud of the work my team has done to support employees who have been furloughed as a result of COVID-19. Our team decided to use iCIMS’ text messaging functionality to stay in touch with these employees. We also partnered with a range of other employers and organizations to connect our furloughed employees with temporary work. These efforts and communications show our employees that we care and makes it easier to bring them back when the timing is right for them to return to their roles.
LS: Those are some really outstanding initiatives, Chloé, and I really respect your data-driven approach and that you’ve brought this mindset to your entire team at Sodexo. Okay, last question for you! What do you think the future of Recruitment Marketing and Employer Branding looks like?
(You can learn more about how to measure your Recruitment Marketing data by building an Employer Brand KPI Dashboard, with an included template.)
CR: Good question! You know what, I think that if you’d asked me this last year, my answer would have been different. However, I think that the public health crisis we’ve had to deal with this year has really changed things.
I think COVID-19 has taught a lot of recruitment marketers that we can adapt our roles and be influential beyond just recruiting. Many of us have now become involved in engaging with candidates throughout the entirety of their lifecycle as new hires and of course as employees.
In other words, we’re starting to focus more on really activating our employee value proposition internally to drive engagement and improve the employee experience, particularly during this tough time. This is a big shift that I think is going to stick around and strengthen our employer brands. This approach will also strengthen our talent attraction efforts as hiring picks up again post-crisis. After all, a better employee experience gives us more to work with when it comes to developing Recruitment Marketing content.
(Read more about three ways your employer brand can re-recruit employees during the COVID-19 crisis.)
LS: Couldn’t agree more! Thank you so much for this Q&A , Chloé, and congratulations again on receiving this Rally Award!
If you enjoyed this interview and want to hear more from Chloé, check out her recent session at RallyFwd Virtual Conference, #WeAreInThisTogether: Crisis Communications With Impact. You can watch the recording here for free.