Fishing in the recruitment pool?

Richard Tyrie, December 18, 2008

Interesting article posted in the LGCPlus entitled 'Fishing in the Recruitment Pool', however some articles need to have the ability to respond, and as I cannot do this via LGCPlus website, I am going to post my thoughts here on the blog.

I recommend having a read of the original article via the LGCPlus website so you understand what I'm talking about.

Whilst I agree with Stephen’s comments about local government needing to articulate the LG employer brand more effectively, this is only part of the challenge.

Aside from the rhetoric…. how do organisations actually create an employer brand (whether ‘of choice’, or not!)?

As any branding pro worth their salt will tell you, brand is about what people ‘feel’ about an organisation; and increasingly, what they tell others. It’s the embodiment of their hands-on experience, or perception of an organisation.  People (and their interactions with others) create a brand – not the employer.

So, back this idea of ‘Employer of choice’:  The question is, how does an organisation ensure that the reality lives up to the promise?  (As a side note for another post… Doesn’t *everyone* claim to want to be an employer of choice?  Does anyone not want to be an EOC?)

Question:

Have most HR Directors actually experienced their own recruitment process (arguably their main shop window for the outside world)?

I doubt it.  If they had, they’d be doing something to improve their approach (just ask the jobseekers).    Most first time applicants to local government walk away from their exposure to the process at best disillusioned; at worst, completely disenfranchised with the notion of a local government career.   A lot of organisations don’t acknowledge receipt of applications.  Hey, most applicants often don’t hear from the employer again, unless they make it past the initial sift… Is that the characteristics of an employer of choice?  They haven’t even joined yet and this is how they’re treated…  And lets not even talk about the recruitment process we subject them to.  Trial by committee anyone? (again, a topic for another day I think..)

It’s a good job that job seeking isn’t an *extremely* personal transaction (“what do you mean I’m not good enough”?), or they maybe inclined to share their negative experience with others (see first point about what a brand really is.)

Until employers start treating job seekers (whether successful or not) with the respect they deserve, their plans to build a great employer brand will be built on shaky foundations..

Stephen, whilst I agree with the sentiment, there’s still a lot of work to be done if you are going to make hay while the anti-private sector sun shine.

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