Job seekers have unprecedented high expectations of potential employers. They treat their job search process like an online shopping experience, crowdsourcing career decisions, scanning reviews from their peers and analyzing a potential employer’s digital footprint. Choosy candidates want their purpose to align with their employer’s purpose, and many won’t join a company with a bad reputation, according to a study by Glassdoor.
Competitive companies share compelling content that maps to every stage of the candidate journey. Content influences a candidate’s decision to apply or accept an offer. It answers his or her questions, provides an insider’s view into your organization, tells stories and more. It answers why top talent should join your organization and not your competitors. Content can be your differentiator.
But even the best content won’t do its job if your employees aren’t sharing it.
Gone are the days when companies can rely solely on their marketing team to build brand awareness, attract talent, and engage with candidates.
How do you accomplish this? Through an employee advocacy program.
Companies engaging in an employee advocacy program are 58 percent more likely to attract top talent, receive four times more job applications, and have five times more job views, according to LinkedIn.
" To get potential employees to know, like and trust you,empower your employees to serve as brand ambassadors "
Employee advocacy programs make it easy for employees to consistently share content online through an accessible medium or platform. An employee advocacy program works like this: an admin loads content into a repository, creates suggested social posts (using the most relevant hashtags and keywords for optimized reach and targeting) and sends content to employees on a frequent, consistent basis.
There are many reasons why employees don’t share company content prior to implementing an employee advocacy program. Even the happiest employees may not think about sharing content, or they simply don’t have time to post on social media. Others are intimidated to post company content and fearful that they may do it wrong.
An employee advocacy program inspires employees to be active on social media and represent your brand by removing all the guesswork around the “right” content to share with their target audiences. Consider it “training wheels” for even the most social media timid employee.
Clearly, employee advocacy benefits your organization and serves as a powerful strategy to attract talent. But what’s in it for the employee?
First, they are optimizing their professional brand online by sharing content that will resonate with their target audience. As employees post high-quality content their networks care about, they are viewed as a helpful resource and a passionate expert in their space. Too often, recruiters spam their networks with job posting after job posting. Sharing other content breaks recruiters free from this negative stereotype. They are adding value and starting conversations; they are giving and not just taking.
Multiple surveys and studies have shared how people trust their peers over brands. When it comes to content, let’s say a message is shared on a company’s website. The exact same message is also shared by an individual employee. Guess which message will be trusted more by job candidates?
Make it easy for your employees to share meaningful content. Enter employee advocacy software–which has gained steam over the last few years. It seems new employee advocacy platforms emerge every other day. The range of capabilities, features and ease of use varies. If you are ready to implement an employee advocacy program, you may want to start with a pilot. As you create the business case for purchasing employee advocacy software, a pilot helps you determine the appetite, concerns, motivators and more.
At Kforce, we launched our employee advocacy program without any additional software and used Microsoft Outlook to email content to every employee twice a week. Within a few months of launching our homegrown Shareable Content Program, we experienced a 496 percent lift in engagement with our content because the employees were happily sharing it with their networks.
Whether you want to start with the technology you already have or shop for new technology, consider the following features when searching for the right program for you:
1. Mobility. In addition to the desktop platform, a mobile application allows your employees to quickly and easily share content from anywhere.
2. Analytics. The ability to measure engagement and content performance allows your marketing team to gain a deep understanding of your target audiences. Access to self-serve analytics for employees allows them to monitor the ROI of their efforts on social media.
3. Suggested content. Content curation is time intensive. Many platforms have a machine learning component that will suggest industry-relevant, high performing content, giving employees several content options to share on any given day.
4. Gamification. A leader board provides employees with real-time data on how their activity compares to their coworkers’ activity. This feature positively impacts program adoption, particularly for fun, competitive company cultures.
Employee advocacy empowers every employee to recruit, which is imperative in today’s content saturated, noisy world.