Having trouble finding employees?

It’s time to use marketing to win the war for talent.

I can’t tell you how many meetings I’ve been in over the last two years where people mentioned how hard it is to find good talent. This is true with our clients from the east coast to the west coast and, yes, in Boise. I’ve heard stories about people accepting jobs and simply not showing up because they found jobs elsewhere.

But take heart. If your company is based in a mid-sized market there are ways for you to win the war for top talent. You’ll need to do more than create postings on Indeed. You’ll need to create a corporate culture that people want to be a part of, and you need to convey that culture with smart marketing. Below, I provide a few insights into how we do this at Duft Watterson.

  • Your website is your company’s front porch. While your website might do a fine job winning the customers you want, it might not do a good job of expressing your company’s dynamic culture to that other important audience: the talent you want to hire. So, review your website, make sure it conveys a personality and a culture that people want to be a part of. And I mean really do it. Question everything. Photography, messaging, copy. Everything. Here’s a bonus: If potential talent finds it interesting, so will your customers.
  • Know who you are. If you can’t clearly and concisely state your company’s unique position in the market, you’re missing the mark with customers and top talent. People want to work for companies that can express their unique value confidently. If you can’t do this, you should probably edit the clutter by doing a brand plan to codify your brand position, unique value propositions, brand voice, and other brand elements. The last thing you want potential talent to say is, “Tell me what you guys do again?”
  • Activate thought leadership: So, you’ve put your job posting on Indeed. You might have also posted a few blogs. Now’s the time to button things up and get a true content marketing machine up and running. With the right plan, you can create a road map for the year and get a jump on key topics of discussion and better manage your resources. This will make your life easier, and it will help your company show up as a leader in its business category. Not just for your customers, but for the people you’ll need to hire to serve them months down the road.
  • Get your message right. When we talk to out-of-market candidates, we remind them that they’ll be able to “work at the highest level here, without enduring San Francisco or Seattle commute times and housing prices.” This resonates with people who live in these cities because they’re proud of what they do and often think they need to stay there to do great work. So, turn that perception on its head. Share stats about Boise’s dynamic business and tech scene. And highlight our thriving arts, our outdoor rec opportunities, our 200-plus days of sunshine and our SHORT commute times.
  • Manage your employer reputation. Remember, what happens in the office doesn’t always stay in the office. So, it’s important to manage your company’s reputation on a regular basis. The formula for doing this varies based on your business model, the number of employees you have and your culture and hiring goals. But you can look at this as a positive and work to harness the power of your reputation on sites like Glassdoor. This can help establish your company as a great place to work and win the war for talent more often.

The take away from all this is that doing one thing won’t ensure you win the war for talent. It requires a combination of marketing fundamentals working in unison for the long haul. And there’s no better time than now to get started.