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The Recruitment Marketing Best Practice Series highlights tips and real-world examples from the 13 practices researched in the SmashFly 2015 Fortune 500 Recruitment Marketing Report Card.


Why is it a best practice?

Your employees were candidates. Your employees are who your candidates are going to work with. They know and live your culture. They are your secret brand advocates! Giving your employees a voice in your talent acquisition efforts allows candidates to hear from their future coworkers in their own words about their career experiences at your organization. It’s invaluable.

Key stat alert: 57% of the 2015 Fortune 500 share employee stories on their career site―and it’s one of the top five most used recruitment marketing practices among these top organizations.

Employee stories fuel transparency in your employer brand and attract and engage candidates to apply. They can also help keep applicants in the selection process interested and learning more about your organization and the role they want.

But you have to make sure your employees feel they can be transparent! Authenticity goes both ways: candidates can be turned off by crafted and highly-marketed stories, and employees can be turned off by being forced to put their name on something that isn’t their real experience. Let the truth out. Candidates will know.


How should I use it?

  1. Find your employee advocates first. Those willing and excited to share their hiring experience, day-in-the-life work or love of your culture are your priority. If there’s no one jumping up and down to sing your organization’s praise, start with employees who feel more comfortable sharing already, like marketing or team leaders. Once you get employees participating, it will be easier to show the importance and results of their stories to others. Plus, most people love the spotlight once they are in it!
  2. Think about the stories you want to tell. Instead of paragraphs of copy coming from the “organization,” let your employees do the talking. Understand where feedback on culture, work, benefits, hiring process, etc. would work best. You might want to use a quick day-in-the-life recap video in ads for your hard-to-fill jobs. You could use quick quotes or pull tweets from employees to feature as a stream on your career site. Not every employee story has to be a large production: real-time reactions after an event or photos taken by a team member throughout the day can really showcase culture. And for Pete’s sake, let employees be personal and funny and human on social media!
  3. Really think about the stories your candidates want to hear. Make the candidate the star (shine that spotlight, seriously). How can your employees help them envision themselves in your organization, in a new role and in the future? Get targeted too: place employee stories per department or job family on specific landing pages or job ads. For example, candidates who specify interest in engineering should be nurtured with content from engineers at your company and about key projects they could be working on. Plus, use them in emails to your applicants too: it can help keep applicants engaged in your brand and more likely to accept an offer, should it come their way.


Who is doing it?

We highlighted Kimberly-Clark in our Recruitment Marketing Report Card for their exceptional use of employee stories (big thumbs up!!). Their People page features employees from all over the world across a variety of different positions sharing their growth with the company.

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Not only can you put a face to a name to a position to a location (hyper relevancy for candidates!), you can also see some more specific timelines of the employee’s growth through different positions and locations. This level of depth really speaks to candidates looking for an organization that will invest in their growth and progression. Kudos.

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