Even before the reality of the pandemic hit, the world was moving towards more digital, targeted experiences with brands. Candidate experiences were also changing because job seekers are more accustomed to digital interactions and novel and personalized experiences.
Gone are the days when a few slides will capture attention and deliver information effectively. Today’s job seekers expect a digitally-enabled experience complete with outstanding user interfaces, personalized messaging and interactive video content. The implementation of technology tools have changed aspects of the recruitment lifecycle and have been critical for firms, like PwC, to continue engaging entry level job seekers.
PwC has been on a multi-year journey to digitally enable our firm — and this is reflected in changes to our approach to recruiting, too. As the firm has continued to transform digitally, we evaluated our important recruitment marketing content to help attract entry level candidates. Specifically, we took the step to revamp completely our traditional presentation format into a new immersive and interactive session. I’d like to share how we elevated PwC’s content to virtual talent attraction methods. I hope this is helpful as you rethink how to approach entry level recruiting during these unprecedented times.
So, what does a personalized, interactive approach to entry level recruiting look like?
One of the most important elements of entry level recruiting is sharing information about the firm with job seekers so that they can be familiarized with our culture and values. Traditionally, we have done this through presentations consisting of a series of slides — but given today’s increasingly digital environment, we took steps to reimagine that presentation and elevated it to be more impactful and interactive. (We’re delighted that our new presentation was recognized at this year’s Rally Awards!)
Rally note: PwC was the second-place winner of the 2020 Rally Awards for Best Content Marketing Program for their approach to intern content, exemplified by the outstanding interactive intern presentation discussed in this blog. For more information about the Rally Awards and the full list of 2020 winners, visit the Rally Awards site.
We spoke with our candidates and gathered feedback from our recruiters to determine how we could present PwC’s brand in a more attention-grabbing, digitally-savvy format. As part of this process, it was important to reimagine the way our recruiting team educates and engages with our entry level job seekers and to highlight our cutting-edge and innovative workplace. As a result of research, candidate and recruiting input, and leveraging interactive tools, we transitioned to our existing presentation into a dynamic, choose-your-own-adventure journey.
How did we do this, you might be wondering? Through the power of employee stories.
How we use people stories in entry level recruiting
Job seekers can go to any company’s career website and learn about the organization’s structure, values and open opportunities. But stories from your own professionals can take things a step further — it can help bring the experience to life for potential interns or full-time hires.
We focused on finding a way to make our sessions interactive, so job seekers could choose the stories that were of interest to them to learn more. Given every employee story is unique, different stories appeal to different job seekers depending on their educational background, interests and career areas of focus.
During our “choose your own journey” sessions, entry level job seekers have the opportunity to use a polling feature from their mobile device, selecting the employee stories they want to watch to learn more about, resulting in building a more personalized connection with professionals at PwC.
Similarly, when we’re presenting in-person, participants have the ability to choose the stories they’d like to watch. The presentation pauses in several places and asks participants which stories they would prefer to hear via a polling functionality. For example, they may have the option to select between two choices: “Do you want to learn more about an individual having an immediate impact? Or another individual embracing identity and intersectionality?” From there, the participants vote on their mobile device and the in-room presenter is able to view the results and select the link of the most requested video.
The participants are in the driver’s seat receiving customized information and the on-site recruiters are there to help support bringing a PwC professional’s story to life through this interactive experience.
Our “choose your own journey” session and approach has been well received over the past year, by both our internal PwC stakeholders and entry level job seekers. In fact, we adapted this interactive experience and adjusted to a 100% virtual recruiting model as a result of the coronavirus pandemic.
How to create interactive presentations for virtual entry level recruiting
The transition to virtual recruiting is an ongoing journey. Thus far, we’ve learned that interactive platforms that feature our people’s stories via videos are really connecting with job seekers, even while they’re working and studying virtually.
The first step we took was to create a way to deliver the material to an individual job seeker. We are able to provide unique URLs so the job seeker can self-navigate the journey with the polling feature turned off. During the self-guided session, job seekers are able to select the video they’d like to watch next.
We are currently working on job seekers being able to join virtual group sessions. Our recruiters would be able to deliver the presentation as they would in-person, leveraging a webinar type technology. During virtual group sessions, the polling feature would support shared interactions between job seekers not together in the same space, while preserving some elements of a digitally-enhanced, personalized experience.
We also had to adjust some of our technology solutions to better support the needs of our recruiting team. The most important task has been looking for a digital platform that can allow for large virtual sessions. While large in-person events are on pause, we are using dynamic technology platforms, allowing us to host virtual events when needed.
As our team, along with the rest of the firm, continues to work virtually, we’ve adjusted our video production strategy. Rather than having a production team film the stories from our professionals, we use a tool that enables our people to shoot their own videos via a mobile device.
And finally, we’ve used this opportunity to take a holistic look at our digital presence. Our entry level recruiting event collateral doesn’t stand alone. It’s part of our entire candidate journey, which we want to improve for potential interns and full-time hires who have expectations of a digital experience upon joining the firm.
I hope hearing about our approach to interactive entry level recruiting and our transition to increased digital experiences has been helpful.
This quick shift to increasing virtual interactivity with job seekers has felt a bit overwhelming at times. But our results progress the firm along its digital transformation journey. They provide the catalyst to take to the next level our digital candidate experience, talent attraction process and corresponding collateral.
This is a great moment to take stock of your existing content and consider how it can be reimagined to put your candidates in the driver’s seat. Best of luck on your own journey towards modernizing and digitizing your Recruitment Marketing strategy.