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Extra, Extra….Candidates Want to Read All About It

September 26

So, here you are. Healthcare reform is well underway. Budgets are being cut. Yet the demand to hire the best and brightest talent doesn’t wane.

What’s a talented acquisition professional to do? The answer is simple. Publish or perish. There are literally hundreds, if not thousands, of mediums that can increase your organization’s level of visibility. And here’s a quick “how to” on where to start.

  • Work with your company’s web department to integrate an ongoing column on your career site that offers candidates a realistic preview of the positions for which you most actively recruit. Give a job seeker practical information on what the opportunity entails, why your culture is unique as compared to other organizations in your space, and real tips on how to secure a job within your company. Ensure the columns are updated on a regular basis, and invite “guest writers” (your own team members) to keep the content fresh.
  • Now that you have your web folks engaged in the mission, let’s turn to marketing. All progressive organizations leverage press releases to keep their brand front and center. But is that press regularly focused on the growth and good news stories related to recruitment? Enlist the help of marketing to ensure there is a recommended once-a-quarter media blitz delivered to applicable media outlets (community/regional/trade journal print and other targeted e-media) that discusses how your organization is growing, hiring and focusing on high-performing employee retention. There is a huge appetite for this type of content in a tough economic climate, and there are very few healthcare companies who are taking advantage of this low- or no-cost branding opportunity.
  • Okay, so we have the web and marketing teams involved now. Who else can we engage to help spread the message on behalf of talent acquisition and recruitment? Your own colleagues! Among the ranks of your talented employees, there are aspiring and accomplished writers. Develop a Brand Ambassador program that identifies high performers who are interested in helping bring other pros to the company. These Brand Ambassadors can be selected via a number of ways. One way is to launch a contest seeking journalistic entries on a relevant topic (i.e., why is Hospital X a great place to work) … and then reward the selected writers with perks like a free lunch, an extra day of PTO or other fun prize…for utilizing social media, blogs, community news, etc. to promote the company’s recruiting message. Many of your own associates are actively engaged in their professional associations. And who better to reach Physical Therapists, for instance, than your own PTs who are involved in their regional and national professional networks. This aforementioned PT would submit articles on your company’s “employer of choice” status to the people you want to reach most!
  • Now I know this next option won’t be a new one to consider, as you can’t escape the ubiquity of ever-present social media, but there are some tips to employ … even if your organization doesn’t yet have a social media policy defined or approved. You, as a talent acquisition professional, can yourself become a social media guru, while simultaneously enhancing your personal brand and increasing the level of visibility of your healthcare organization. And one of the most effective ways to achieve these mutually beneficial goals is to become a Twitter expert. Even if your company doesn’t yet sanction this social media tool, you can build your own Twitter “handle” (that’s the name you’re known by on Twitter!) to share information on how healthcare professionals can source out today’s best jobs, improve their resume and cover letter, and/or work their own professional networks. As you begin to build a following, and follow other Twitter accounts that are well-known in the human resources and recruitment arena, you’ll enjoy the benefit of enhancing your skill set, while others see that you are a representative of Company Y on your Twitter bio. I have seen firsthand how our own organization, and many of our client organizations, make hires through those too-important-to-ignore 140 Twitter characters. And don’t downplay how this Twitter expertise makes you a more marketable HR pro yourself. Today’s most progressive employers often won’t consider an individual who doesn’t have a strong understanding of social media.

Today’s candidate has an expectation that they are going to be able to find relevant content about their prospective employer, not only on a career site, but in lots of other mediums. Doing a quick Google search on your company and the words “recruitment,” “careers” and “jobs” will help you determine what your organization’s baseline level of visibility is today. Be sure to consistently measure results as your communications program becomes better defined. Share results with key company stakeholders and leaders to ensure ongoing support.

Publish or perish? It’s not just for academia anymore.

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