Marketing and HR are not that different – communication is key in both. In this post, I’ll focus on two important reasons why HR and marketing departments should work closer together.
1. Employer Branding – perfect combination
Employer brand should not be separated from the corporate brand – they are inevitably connected.
Often employer branding is considered to be the responsibility of an HR department alone and that marketing takes care of the corporate brand. This is not the case. It is the job of every employee in the company to take care of the brand image – from the top of the corporate ladder all the way down to the bottom. However, HR and marketing are the departments that have a key role in creating the brand image as they have the power to communicate with a vast number of candidates and customers. The messages get spread widely through the channels HR and marketing use.
First off, it is essential that employer brand should not be separated from the corporate brand – they are inevitably connected. If the employer brand is bad, the overall brand image will suffer as well. Vice versa, if the corporate brand is seen in a negative light, the employer brand will not be strong either.
The messages sent by marketing to customers and the messages sent by HR to candidates should speak the same language.
Marketing and HR departments should work together to keep the employer brand and corporate brand consistent. Furthermore, the messages sent by marketing to customers and the messages sent by HR to candidates should speak the same language.
One must remember that candidates are customers or they can be in the future. This idea basically means that the customer who receives a company newsletter or sees an advertisement on TV could also be applying for a job at the same company and receive communication from the HR department. It is confusing for the customer/candidate if the messages are contradictory. This confusion can be avoided by getting marketing and HR to work together and plan the communication in cooperation.
CANDIDATE EXPERIENCE = CUSTOMER EXPERIENCE?
HR and marketing are connected through Candidate Experience. Treating customers badly makes them stop buying the company products. You can probably guess how this affects the candidates if they are treated badly. Yes, exactly. They also stop buying the company products, tell their friends, and in worst cases, they write on social media about it, and the word spreads. Therefore, marketing and HR should work together to ensure that both customer and candidate experiences are handled perfectly.
In the best case scenario, candidate experience equals candidate experience, and the communication is as good in both cases.
Download a Definitive Guide to Candidate Experience!
2. Recruitment Marketing: Full of Opportunities
It is not easy to find another communication channel through which your conversion is as good as the recruitment messages.
The goal for a recruitment process is to find an ideal job candidate. However, the process can be used for so much more, and one key thing is communication. Recruiting enables a one of a kind opportunity to communicate with a target group that you already know is interested in your company. You have multiple touch points with the candidates starting from the job ad and ending at the hiring decisions and communication with the unselected ones. It is not easy to find another communication channel through which your conversion is as good as the recruitment messages. Candidates read the messages because they want to—they are extremely interested in what you have to say.
To make the communication interesting and relevant for the candidates, get input from both HR and marketing. Both of their expertise is valuable. Candidates can be offered, for example, material about the company (to be read before a job interview) or discount codes for company products.
In our company, we had the experience of enabling other companies to offer discount coupons for their candidates who were not selected in the recruitment process. We also tested the candidate experience with this customer by requesting feedback from the candidates. The results were highly positive. Candidates appreciated their effort and interest towards the company being noticed. They were even happier when they received personal feedback from the recruiter at the same time. This was a killer combination!
Recruitment marketing does not mean spamming.
I need to be clear here. By combining HR and marketing, I do not by any means denote that companies should start to send spam-like messages to candidates. The communication needs to be planned carefully, and only relevant messages should be sent.
Every time you consider to do or not do some sort of communication, think about the candidates first. Does it help them in some way, and is it relevant to them? If the answer is no, you definitely should not do it. As you know, your candidates (= customers) come first.