Take a moment to reflect on your company from the perspective of an IT professional. What would make them want to be part of your team? Why would they be interested in your open tech roles rather than the countless others out there? Competitive salary offers can certainly play a role, but it takes more than just money to capture the attention and interest of today’s tech pros. With current IT market conditions in favor of candidates, employer branding is becoming a stronger focus for many business leaders.
Selling Your Company
Half of any strong employer branding strategy must emphasize selling the company by highlighting the characteristics that make it a great workplace. To that end, consider a number of areas that serve to attract great tech talent:
- Work-Life Balance: Do you offer flexible scheduling or the opportunity to work remotely? These options are increasingly expected in a growing gig economy.
- Benefits: Health insurance is important, but consider the fringe benefits such as free beverages, catered lunches, or gym memberships that can help you stand out as an employer.
- Culture: 36% of job seekers become disinterested in a company due to a negative culture. Your employees should feel celebrated during anniversaries, birthdays, and times of achievement. A great culture also contains fun activities, whether they be team dinners, golf outings, bowling tournaments, or holiday celebrations.
- Team Environment: Collaboration is exciting for tech professionals, and they seek out opportunities that encourage open and continuous dialogue between employees and across departments.
- Employee Engagement: Employees who are happy with their employer are engaged with their surroundings and coworkers. Focusing on improving employee experience and engagement through various methods makes it easier to sell your company as a career destination.
Selling Your Open IT Roles
The other half of a strong employer branding strategy is expertly selling the open role. Think of those job descriptions that consist solely of a long, bulleted list of responsibilities. Too often, these focus primarily on what a company requires from the candidate and not what the candidate can expect from the company. This becomes a one-way view of openings that doesn’t work when the IT unemployment rate is 2%.
With studies proving that job seekers value learning new skills and working with challenging technical problems, consider what the most exciting aspects of your openings are and make them stand out wherever the role is mentioned. Does your role offer access to new technologies or coveted software programs? Will it involve working with high-profile projects, Fortune 500 clients, or industry leaders? Where have others who held this role gone in their careers? Let your answers to these questions shape your approach to selling your open IT roles.
Branding Platforms that Work
Whether a job seeker is exposed to your overall company brand before your open role, or vice-versa, if both are branded correctly, they can feed off each other and create a powerful one-two punch. If your company and roles are primed to sell, it’s time to spread the word to IT pros through a number of channels:
- Your Website: Few corporate websites accurately represent the company behind them. If yours is outdated or not optimized for mobile devices, it gives the impression your technology and practices are out-of-date as well. For your website’s job listings, Forbes suggests using a visual storytelling approach to capture interest and convey the brand you’ve worked so hard to build.
- Social Media: Since 57% of job seekers use social media as part of their search, a company with no LinkedIn or Facebook presence will raise red flags. Maintain a LinkedIn presence by sharing relevant content and encouraging employees to interact with your page. Utilize Facebook to leverage your great culture by posting pictures of your cool perks and fun events. Candidates see such imagery as an authentic and unfiltered window into your operations, so make it count.
- Online Reviews: Third-party opinion carries tremendous weight, with nearly half of job seekers turning away opportunities solely due to a company’s poor reputation. Take control of your Glassdoor page by tactfully responding to negative feedback and encouraging happy current employees to leave reviews.
- Email: Candidate email marketing isn’t dead; it just isn’t being utilized like it should be in 2018. Instead of sending job listings to cold database leads who may not even match the description, give them something of value like a newsletter of tips or an industry article. By providing something instead of asking for something, a candidate will come to see you as a trusted voice and be open to the right opportunity that matches their skill set when it comes along.
- In-person opportunities: While digital channels are the chief way to connect with today’s IT pro candidates, there is still great power in creating a strong personal connection out in the field at industry conferences, events, career fairs, and meetup groups. Prep your entire workforce on how to speak about the company and refer those with potential.
Employer Branding in IT
It takes a lot of effort to build a great company filled with exciting opportunities, so don’t let all that hard work go to waste. You might know you have an amazing company and your current employees might know why they love to work for you, but do the job seekers you want to attract know? Spreading the word by focusing on your employer branding is the final piece of the puzzle to put in place.
Looking for more insight to attracting IT pros? Download your 2018 Midwest IT Salary Guide here.