Thursday, 9 November 2017

#cipdace17 blog 5 - session D2

So here we are on Day Two, and as predicted I’m a little more tired than I was yesterday. The evening fringe activities last night were all excellent, and then I’ve been speaking this morning at a breakfast seminar on flexible working. 

I may have used the platform to make a big announcement too, something it’s been hard to keep secret. See the Twitter feed for details. 

And now I’m in session D2 on enhancing your brand and attracting the right talent. 

First up is Jane Graham from Wiltshire Council. She talked about the journey they went on from a traditional to innovative approach to talent acquisition and what worked for them. 

The financial challenges faced by local government are well documented, and so the ability to attract the best talent is something that is also difficult. Her first case study was on social workers, where demand exceeds supply at present and there are numerous problems around recruitment and retention. 

They worked with an agency to understand their current employer value proposition and to get to know their target audience more. This proved helpful because it showed them the kinds of things that attracted social workers and helped them to understand why some previous campaigns had not worked. They moved away from using stock images in their campaigns and used images of actual staff, actual things happening at work and used this to refresh their offer. 

The results speak for themselves. They increased the number of applications, reduced turnover, reduced agency spend and filled more vacancies. They also had softer results that improved engagement, and helped them to move into the 21st century!

This approach seems to have worked really well and is one of several organisations I’ve seen who have been on a similar journey and really embraced new technology, analytics and a thorough approach to talent acquisition and employer brand - but in my view you get out what you put in. 

Put in the right amount of effort and you’ll be rewarded. 

Next up was Jon Dawson from Mandarin Oriental Hotels. They had a strategy to become one of the best known employer brands within the UK hospitality sector, separate from their parent company Marriott. They had zero presence in the UK at the time, and were doing this at the same time as recruiting 250 people to actually open and run their hotel. 



The photo above shows the journey they were going on, and he outlined a challenge where the various creative people who worked with them were great in generating excitement and buzz around the brand, but the technical side of having a candidate portal wasn’t ready in time to manage this demand. 

This was an interesting talk of how to create an employer brand and whole new organisation from scratch, and to me highlighted how many organisations are hamstrung by their own history and how, if they started all over again, they would end up with something completely different and at the same time more appropriate for who they are and what they want to do. 

As refreshing and developing our employer brand is something we are about to work on in my current organisation, this was a very relevant talk. 

But now I need a coffee. 

Till next time...

Gary

Ps in other news, check out my recent big announcement...blog coming soon on that