Learnings from ERE’s Creative Excellence Awards Webinar

Jan 28, 2014

Screen Shot 2014-01-27 at 6.16.33 AMLast month Brandemix was fortunate enough to co-host the CEA awards presentation, along with ERE’s Todd Raphael.

The CEAs are an award program designed to recognize outstanding achievement in recruitment advertising and marketing. Each year recruitment ad agencies and corporate recruiting departments from around the world enter their best creative advertising campaigns. Each entry is judged by a panel of the finest creative and professional talent from across the country, of which I was one.

As context for the awards ceremony, Todd and I did some research on 2014 recruiting trends, much of it already familiar to readers of ERE, particular John Sullivan’s illuminating articles. In case you weren’t able to attend, here are some of the important learnings you might have missed.

  • Layoffs are at their lowest level since 2001
  • Hiring is heating up
  • More employees quit their jobs in October than in any other month since the recession of 2007 to 2009

In fact, according to, 55 percent of hiring managers and recruiters plan to hire more professionals in the first half of 2014 than they did in the second half of 2013 — a jump of 9 percent from the same period one year ago and the highest level on record since Dice Holdings first posed the hiring question in mid-2010.

Other 2014 Trends

  • Employer branding is considered the best long-term recruiting strategy, as recruiting looks more like marketing.
  • “Apply with LinkedIn” becoming more accepted, or LinkedIn in lieu of a resume
  • Employee referrals and social media are melding
  • What attending college looks like is changing, and thus college recruitment marketing is changing as well
  • A metric-driven employee referral program becomes a dominant hiring source
  • Boomerangs become a primary target once again
  • Predictive metrics and the use of big data move from interesting to essential
  • The mobile platform continues to be a critical tool
  • And on social recruiting, though it’s becoming a more significant part of the recruiting budget and Facebook becoming more accepted as a recruiting source, here’s a bit of advice. Keep your eyes on the next trend. Teen panelists of Ignition 2013 had these comments: “I hate Facebook. It’s just so boring. Now I’m an Instagram user.” “I used to scroll down Facebook and read every single status. Now I just love Vine.”

From the award submissions themselves I learned this:

  • Augmented reality is really here. The seamless process from ads to booths and banners with QR codes or other ways to connect with smart devises made for a totally immersive recruitment experience.
  • Website redesigns on the rise — in fact, there were more than 50 submissions. Flash is out, HTML is in, and content is king.
  • As a words person, I am disappointed to see that copy is still a second-class citizen to creative. While people and pictures were front and center, copy and provocative headlines have not evolved as much.
  • The link from employer brand research to uniquely branded creative is still missing a beat. Those of you looking for DIY branding have the research part down, but take my advice. Call in a professional to do the analysis and brand architecture.
  • And finally my favorite — there is more transparency and greater details given about the hiring and selection process from attraction through onboarding. All great, as recruiting comes out from behind the curtain.

Want to know more? Download the full presentation here.

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