Yukon Rolling Out New Recruitment Branding, Marketing

Oct 11, 2011
This article is part of a series called News & Trends.

In case you’re looking to apply for this open HR job, be aware that the snow starts in October and melts in May.

OK, so Yukon would like you to know that there’s more to its territory than a six- to eight-month long winter.

In 2008, it began looking at a new strategy for recruiting, retention, branding, and marketing the new brand. It wanted to better attract youth, Yukon First Nation (aboriginal) candidates, people with disabilities, and others, and do a better job at staffing hard-to-fill jobs.

By the way, if you don’t know where Yukon is — it’s next to Alaska. It’s about the size of Texas, but with only 30-35,000 people (less windy than, say, more southern Canadian areas like Winnipeg, notes Renee Paquin, an HR director in Yukon’s territorial government). Yukon hires social workers, healthcare professionals, environmental professionals, library employees, and others; in all, about 5,000 employees and about 650 jobs posted annually. Some communities can only be reached by airplane.

Paquin says that to arrive at a new employment brand, the Western Canada recruiting ad agency Midlyn Day held focus groups with employees, Yukon residents, and with residents from outside of Yukon. It also conducted telephone interviews with leaders in the organization, senior managers, and HR directors.

The Yukon HR team also looked at existing information it had, such as its annual employee engagement survey, exit surveys, and surveys of people who were hired from outside of the territory.

The result was a “comes with a territory” tagline — but, as ERE junkies know, a recruiting tagline is not a recruiting brand. The brand, the value proposition, the desired reputation, is really, in this case, about what comes with the territory: career opportunities and mobility, the lifestyle and environment, work/life balance, and the ability to make a difference in the world.

Along with the new brand came new materials, which were rolled out this spring and are still being created for various jobs. There are posters. Redone job listings. A new website, again with help from Day Advertising.

“The brand resonated,” says Paquin. “People are really behind it.”

Metrics and results and ROI are still in the works, as the marketing strategy is still being implemented. The posters that targeted First Nation job candidates resulted in a Creative Excellence Award, as did other branding materials created for the campaign.

This article is part of a series called News & Trends.
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