How did you apply for your latest job?
Did you tread the well-beaten path and pour long, hard graft into creating the world’s best CV? Or perhaps you took the plunge and turned up for an interview unannounced? (rather like this brave fellow)
Or maybe you just happened to stumble upon an ingenious ad hidden within the bowels of the internet while nonchalantly perusing data being sent from iPhone apps?
Okay, we know that last one’s a wee bit of a stretch – but not if you happen to be Zack Whittaker.
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Hide and seek-ing a job
The cyber-security reporter discovered the concealed job ad – created by Apple – completely by chance.
While analysing the iPhone data, he uncovered the unique URL ‘us-east-1.blobstore.apple.com’, where the ad was lying in wait.
The ad – targeted at ‘a talented engineer to develop a critical infrastructure component’ – consists of a graphic of Apple’s famous logo made up entirely of strings of incredibly complex-looking code.
It’s the latest addition to the growing list of expertly creative organisational job ads that are increasingly making the rounds in today’s changing recruitment and employment market.
In the same vein, in 2016, Dyson concealed a code within a YouTube video as part of its ‘Rethinkers’ recruitment campaign:
And an increasingly common trend (for all maths and computer-science boffins out there) is for the employer’s contact number or website to be hidden in a cryptic equation which the prospective candidate must solve first, as with this inventive Google ad:
Value your values
Creatively inventive job ads like these are a great way to sift through the goldmine of prospective candidates and find exactly the right people for your company. But they’re also a unique opportunity to broadcast your organisational values – and build a reputable image based on them. Not just for customers, but for potential employees too.
After all, when we talk about the ‘employee experience’, this definition isn’t confined solely to the period of time for which someone is an official employee. It encompasses their entire experience with the company brand – from when they first apply for the job, to when they eventually depart.
So if you’re going to make your organisational values the focus of your recruitment campaigns – or any external marketing for that matter – you have to ensure you demonstrate this same level of commitment to them at every stage of the employee experience. You have to live and breathe them every day – internally and externally in equal measure.
If you portray an innovative spirit, make sure your organisation really is innovative. If you evoke a strong sense of commitment to workforce diversity, make sure you display this commitment in everything your company does. When it comes to the employee experience, the whole is greater than the sum of its parts.
Discontent gone viral
If there is a discord between your marketing and internal practices, it won’t go unnoticed by new employees – and they likely won’t just turn a blind eye either. A good example of this is ex-Apple employee Ben Farrell, who, upon discovering the employee experience within the company was a complete departure from it’s external brand identity, promptly quit after less than two years, and went on to write a pretty damning blog which ended up going viral.
Failings like this can do lasting damage to a company’s reputation. And productivity too – because if the organisation isn’t committed to the values it trumpets, why should employees commit to the company?
But in organisations where employees are motivated by shared values and a commitment to a mission and purpose – and have a positive employee experience – they’re nine times more likely to have high customer satisfaction!
Leaders and managers are the most important people in upholding organisational values to employees. As a key part of the employee experience, they have to set the example. It’s important to create shared comprehension, so the values are known and understood and can be conveyed to the front line. (If your leaders or managers are struggling to articulate or demonstrate brand values, we can help).
Practice what you preach
The underlying principle here is that it’s not what you say you’re going to do – it’s that you actually do what you say you’re going to do.
So you can’t just plaster your organisation’s values all over your website or walls (although we can tell you through experience that this doesn’t go amiss), hoping they subconsciously sink in and that everything’s fine and dandy.
If you want to really retain the talent you attract through your creative recruitment campaigns, you have to create a compelling – but most importantly, consistent – employee experience, from start to finish.
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