Blogs may not be the hottest new tool, but don’t rule them out as part of your organization’s employer branding and talent acquisition efforts.
A good blog can connect a company with job-seekers, energize candidates, and engage your current employees. Here are some tips for creating, maintaining, or improving a corporate recruiting blog, and a look at some companies that are doing those very things.
Post regularly: Nothing looks worse than a blog that’s abandoned, or half-finished, or outdated. If you’re going to create a recruiting blog, stick with it. A weekly post should be sufficient, and there are ways to make even that cycle easier (see No. 3 below). If you can’t post something new one week, link to other resources your company offers or a useful recruiting article from another (non-competitor’s) blog. In a pinch, a funny video, or cute cat photo will do.
Convey your culture: A recruiting blog is the perfect venue for sharing your company’s brand, its mission, and its values. Your careers site will surely include that information, but a blog lets you illustrate it on a regular basis, highlighting employees or volunteer work or milestones. A blog is also more casual and conversational, reading more like a firsthand account of employment and less like a recruitment brochure.
Cummins is pretty good example of this. Its corporate blog (whose image-heavy format I love) features a 300-word piece on diversity. At the bottom, there are a series of articles by employees: “What Black History Month Means to Me.” This shows Cummins’ commitment to diversity much more effectively and sincerely than a website that says “We support diversity.”
Hand the reins to a variety of employees: With all due respect to the HR and talent acquisition teams, job-seekers want to hear from “regular” employees. Let workers in different departments and different seniority levels guest-host the blog every once in a while. They’ll give their own individual insights into what it’s like to work for your organization.
Google’s blog, while not specifically meant for recruiting, perfectly illustrates this. Scroll through its posts and you’ll find articles from the director of consumer hardware, the VP of engineering, someone from the Safe Browsing Team, and a communications associate. They bring their own unique experiences and speak to different types of job-seekers.
Don’t just tell — show!: You may associate “blog” with “text,” but blogs can be so much more. Include photos of your employees, your workplace, and your internal events. Include video testimonials from your most enthusiastic workers. Answer job-seeker questions with quick videos that show that you’re listening to their concerns. Later on, you can explore adding memes, GIFs, and infographics, depending on how fun and casual your organization’s employer brand is.
Write general advice: Don’t just write about your own organization. A good recruiting blog should be a general resources for job-seekers, even those outside your field. Offer advice on résumés, job interviews, and cover letters. Provide the latest information on mobile job searching, job board apps, and video interviews. You’ll score higher in online searches, you’ll create a more loyal and grateful audience, and reach talent you might never have expected.
Accenture’s recruiting blog does this, with articles like “Be the Quarterback to Your Own Career” (timed to the Super Bowl) and “Career Transition – Find Your Strengths.” This advice applies to any job and provides value to a wide array of job-seekers, who may one day become candidates.
Link to job listings: As much as job-seekers wants to read your advice and learn about your culture, they also want to browse your current openings and apply for jobs. Make sure your blog — either in the individual entries or on the homepage — has ways for job-seekers to submit their applications. You should also include instructions for directly contacting recruiters with questions or follow-ups. In fact, you can devote whole articles to descriptions of jobs, or an in-depth look at a single department or location, or an interview with an HR professional.
When HP’s jobs blog hosted an interview with a recruiter, it received 19 comments — high engagement for what’s actually a niche article.
Invite Responses: Speaking of comments, why not create a conversation with your readers? Let job-seekers ask questions about the interview process. Some may want to know about relocating or interning. They may want to share concerns about the job market in general, your field in particular, or recent news or events that might affect your organization. An honest, transparent response will make a great impression on potential employees.
Oh, and one last tip — where should you put your blog? If possible, it should live on your corporate site’s CMS so it integrates seamlessly with the rest of your talent acquisition. But you can also launch it on a separate platform, such as WordPress, Blogger, or Tumblr. Just make sure to link to your careers site and to use official colors and logos, so job-seekers will know it’s an approved, legitimate source of hiring information.