Attracting Employees – How To Improve The Quality And Quantity Of Job Applicants With Content

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You have job openings.

You need to hire.

You can’t find quality applicants.

You’re not alone. Many organizations I talk to say that finding quality applicants is harder than ever – and getting worse.

These days it takes more than a job opening and a “Help Wanted” sign to find the quality or quantity of applicants you need; it takes a commitment to telling your story in meaningful ways.

The best content is simply sharing who you really are and what you do already. The sincere nuggets that make up your normal day. Don’t stress about having to make content that doesn’t feel comfortable or real to you and your business. Don’t pretend to be something or someone you’re not. The key to the content strategy here is to share who you are so folks can get a genuine understanding of the company they are looking at.

Why Telling Your Story Is Important For Hiring

Focusing year-round on sharing your story can help you be better prepared to connect with quality applicants when the need arises. The way you tell and share your story is through content: the words, photos, graphics, videos and experiences you use.

The way to court quality applicants in the modern work environment has changed. Here are a few reasons why:

EMPLOYEE SATISFACTION

With unemployment being at record lows, the available pool of applicants looking for work is shrinking.

But, looking for work and not having a job are not the same thing.

Keep in mind that your next employee may very well be gainfully employed. Your plan should include creating ways in which those working in a similar industry – or even a competitor – can see why your company is the better option for their needs. 

Studies show that intangibles such as respect, teamwork, and purpose are playing larger roles in an applicant’s decision to apply for certain positions. Make sure you are finding ways to show the character and culture of your company. Doing so will help quality candidates see why you’re a company that should be on their radar.

THE EASE OF TECHNOLOGY

Technology is making it easier to do more with less effort. It’s also making us lazier. We no longer have to walk into a storefront to learn about a business. With websites, video platforms, and social media, full experiences can come to us instead of us going to them.

We now have access to information at any time without getting out of a chair – or couch.  

So what does that mean for you? 

RISK OF NEGATIVE IMPRESSIONS

With the rise of technology comes the rise of expectations.

So what happens when companies don’t embrace technology and use them as expected? It can send the wrong message and create negative impressions about your organization. 

In other words, not having a modern-looking website can keep potential employees from applying. Not using social media.  Not showing growth potential, workplace flexibility or your company culture.

These types of things could tell potential applicants that you’re not paying attention or you don’t offer what they want from a company. 

What Type Of Content Do You Focus On?

Ok, so we’ve determined that you have to try a little harder these days to create content that helps inspire and inform potential applicants. The content has to be readily and easily available. It also has to be in many different places in hopes of getting noticed by those you wish to talk to.

And we know that not paying attention to what applicants expect can send the wrong message about your company.

The content can be in video, documents, text on a website, photos, testimonials, social media posts, etc.

The best content is simply sharing who you really are and what you do already. The sincere nuggets that make up your normal day. Don’t stress about having to make content that doesn’t feel comfortable or real to you and your business. Don’t pretend to be something or someone you’re not. The key to the content strategy here is to share who you are so folks can get a genuine understanding of the company they are looking at.

Organizing Your Content Plan

To help you organize your efforts, I’ve outlined three key areas below for your content. Each of the three topics play a key role in telling the story of your company.  These topics are designed to help you plan out ideas for what to share in your content.

Paying attention to each of these three areas will help you connect with the right people and attract those who align themselves with the culture you’ve created.

THE HEAD

This is the logical and literal component of your content efforts. 

Keep in mind that not everyone knows what you do. Even your best customers often don’t know all you do. So you’ll want to create some content that is very straight forward to help applicants understand exactly what you do and who you do it for. Think of what you’d want an applicant to know about you.

Literal topics include what do you make, sell or do? How do you do it? What makes you different? What’s a normal day like? Be clear and obvious and use words and terms everyone can understand. 

THE HEART

This is the feeling side of your content. You want to demonstrate how do you treat people. How do you recognize and respect your employees? How you care for and help the needs of your clients. Focus on ways to demonstrate the culture you’ve created and how you execute it on a daily basis.

Flexibility in the workplace consistently ranks high on employment surveys as a top desire of potential employees. If you can speak to flexibility specifically, this will help.

Think about the ways a potential applicant may be dissatisfied with their current position and speak to how your company could help to fill that void.

(More thoughts on this topic in our post Five Ways To Add Employee Recognition Into Your Company Culture.)

THE SOUL

This type of content relates to what you believe and how do you execute on those beliefs. This includes your company mission, vision, and values – along with causes you support and community activities you give to. Having a defined set of mission, vision, and values not only allows applicants to align their expectations with yours, but it provides you a foundation to measure your hiring decisions against. 

Share how you created your values. Speak to how do you choose what causes to get involved in? 

Explain how your company is more than just a set of individual jobs. 

As an example, our company’s values are listed here.

Closing Thoughts

Creating content will help you create positive impressions and better connections to quality candidates before they apply.

It’s important to know that not all people care about the same things. Not all people want the same things. Not all people value the same things.  Your company has characteristics that will appeal to a variety of people. But they have to know about it before they can care about it.

Therefore it becomes even more important to share what you want, value, and care about as a company, what you offer those that work for you, and how your company supports, respects and nurtures those that work for it.

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