Recruiting

brand ambassador

Brand Ambassador: Employees Help Promote Companies

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Traditionally, the term ‘brand ambassadors’ has been associated with A-list celebrities that charge a large sum of money to sell a product or service. But according to a Nielsen study, 84% of people trust recommendations from friends, family, and colleagues over other forms of marketing.

This principle also holds true for marketing your employer brand. As highlighted in LinkedIn’s Talent Trends Report, job seekers are looking for unfiltered insights from current employees while considering new jobs. Some of their comments include:

“Connect me with insiders — nothing like hearing straight from the horse’s mouth.”

“I would like to hear the positives and negatives from real professional staff members — not the marketing gloss from the CEO or marketing. Real people. Real jobs.”

This was further corroborated in our recent survey in Kenya. Our findings revealed that while researching to learn more about a company, 38% of the candidates preferred speaking to current and/or former employees, 27% of them view current and/or former employees on LinkedIn and 20% of them check Glassdoor for reviews.

READ | Ask these 10 questions to define your Employee Value Proposition

Now that we know the importance of promoting your company’s employer brand through your employees, let’s move on to understanding what a company needs to foster a recruitment brand ambassador :

Show off your employees

Your employees define your company culture, manifest your company’s vision and live your values. Without them, your employer brand would cease to exist. By showing off your employees and increasing their engagement with the values of your company, you can bring out the recruitment brand ambassador in them!

Highlight employee experiences on social media

Did you know that one in four job-seekers view other employee profiles after finding out about a job opening? It would therefore be beneficial to encourage your employees to keep an updated, attention-worthy and professional online profile. Additionally, you can also leverage their experiences by having them share their stories as recruitment brand ambassadors on social media.

Encourage your employees to use their LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook and Instagram social media handles to represent the values and culture of your company. For instance, if you’re hosting a mixer for your employees, create a hashtag and ensure your employees use it to share inside pictures from the event! Here’s an example of one of our Shortlisters doing the same:

brand ambassador

Not too long ago, Thomson Reuters’ stint with employee-generated content took Instagram by storm. In order to help prospective hires picture themselves working in offices across the world, they launched a campaign called #FeaturedFriday. Every Friday their Instagram handle featured an external or internal office photo captured by one of their employees.

      

The campaign garnered 30% of the likes for their Instagram account in 2016, but the real winner? Their employer brand visibility grew and so did their positive brand image!

Urge your employees to share company values & culture on LinkedIn

Make sure that your employees have up-to-date LinkedIn profiles with their company photo, descriptions, cover photo etc. coordinated, which lends a polished and cohesive feel when candidates are searching on LinkedIn.

You can even give employees a line about your work culture to add to their LinkedIn summary, e.g., “I have thrived both personally and professionally thanks to the supportive culture at <Company name> — check out our careers page or reach out if you’re interested in joining us!”.

Encourage your employees to write reviews on Glassdoor

Ask your employees to write reviews of your company on popular sites like Glassdoor. Ideally, favourable reviews will help strengthen a prospective candidate’s urge to work for your company. According to our latest candidate survey conducted in Kenya, job seekers claimed they would accept lower pay if the company has positive reviews online.

In the event that you receive negative reports on platforms such as Glassdoor, don’t give up! Your response to those negative reviews can actually help build your employer brand. For instance, you can use this as a chance to address negative feedback tactfully. Responding to negative feedback by current or former employees in a positive manner on this public platform will help secure the trust of job-seekers or anyone else out there.

Looking to grow your team? We can help you; Shortlist offers a wide range of recruitment solutions that help companies build great teams.

Hiring in India? We can help

Hiring in Kenya? We can help

Include employee testimonials directly on your careers page and in job descriptions

Add employee testimonials to show off your office culture and day-to-day activities in the form of pictures and videos in your job description or on your careers landing page. For instance, marketing giant HubSpot uses this feature on their careers page in the following manner:

Image credit — HubSpot

If you do not have a careers page you can always share testimonials on your social media handles. Moreover, if you do not have the option of making sophisticated video clips of employee testimonials, don’t worry! A smartphone camera and a video posted to social media still brings your employer brand to life!

READ | What is your employer brand and why does it matter?

As reflected in our recent candidate survey in Kenya, over half of the candidates use the job description and careers landing page to learn more about what it’s like to work at a company — over Glassdoor and all social media platforms. It’s therefore important to capitalise on your website as much as possible.

Employee referral programs can go a long way

Unlike other recruiting strategies, the employee referral program uses existing employees to find and hire the best talent from their networks. Research shows that referred candidates are 55% faster to hire than employees shortlisted through careers sites, and that employee referral programs reduce cost per hire, improve the quality of hire and reduce attrition rate.

With the help of some of these tips, you bolster recruitment brand ambassadors who can help you find talented job-seekers excited about coming on board!

Stay tuned for more

As part of our latest campaign on employer branding, we will be sharing actionable resources and tools like these over the next few months. To receive all of our latest tips straight to your inbox, sign up for our weekly newsletter here!

Anything specific about employer branding that you’re hoping to learn? Let us know in the comments below.

Employer branding tips for Kenyan companies

Download our survey report for actionable insights from 1,200+ Kenyan professionals

Effective Job Description: How to make it inclusive and engaging

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“Recruiting is a selling process, and people have options. Look at the job description as a marketing opportunity.”

– Adam Robinson, CEO of applicant tracking system Hireology

Gone are the days of writing general and thoughtless job posts. According to a study by Indeed.com, 61% of employed applicants said that an interesting job description would prompt them to consider a new job. And according to our recent candidate survey in Kenya, over half of candidates use the job description to learn more about what it’s like to work at a company — over Glassdoor and all social media platforms.

Needless to say, in order to hire the best talent you want to ensure your job post gets noticed. To create an effective job description, you need to strike a balance between being succinct and providing just the right amount of information so candidates can self-qualify for the role. How can you achieve this?

1. The right job title

Make your title accurate and SEO-friendly. If you’re hiring a Senior Customer Service Representative, avoid using acronyms like “Sr. Customer Service Rep.” or off-beat titles like “Customer Support Guru.” These deviations reduce clarity in a case where it’s beneficial to be as clear as possible.

Moreover, sticking to the conventional title also makes sure your JD is search engine optimised — meaning candidates searching for that type of job will be more likely to find it while searching on Google. If you’re not sure what title to go with, it could be useful to do some research on popular job listing sites for most-used titles of similar job openings.

2. An effective job description is gender-neutral

It is imperative to be mindful of using non-gender-specific pronouns and job titles in order to promote diversity and inclusion. According to a study published in the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, replacing words with gender stereotypes attached to them — like “ninja,” “rockstar” and “guru” — in your role title with more straightforward words like “sales representative” and “developer” can help make prospective candidates feel more included. You can always scan your job description through the Gender Decoder tool, which will tell you whether your job description is too gender-specific.

3. Pictures and videos

It’s one thing to say your company culture is great, it’s another to show it in action. We recommend you add pictures and videos on the careers landing page to show off your work environment, day-to-day office activities and people in your company. For more tips on improving your careers page click here.

effective job description

On our recruitment landing page for Africa’s Talking, we highlighted their fun work culture with this office snapshot.

4. Explanation of the role’s purpose

An effective job description says why this role is needed and important within your organisation. Individuals like to feel needed and that their role is a crucial piece of the bigger puzzle.

5. An effective job description includes your mission statement

You may know what a company does or sells, but often its broader mission or “reason for being” is far more compelling to prospective employees.

In our latest employer branding survey, when asked what factors are most important to respondents when considering joining a new company, Kenyan professionals ranked the company’s mission and impact on society over flexible working hours and well-known brand name!

6. Showcase your EVP

Focus on highlighting your Employee Value Proposition — the set of differentiators that make you an attractive place to work. According to a studyby Gartner, a strong EVP can help you attract significant talent, boost employee engagement and reduce compensation premium by 50%. Read more about creating an EVP here.

For instance, TransferWise’s latest job post for a Senior Java Developer clearly states the opportunities this role will give a candidate.

Image Credit: TransferWise.com

Similar to most marketing tools, job titles and postings customised to a target audience are likely to produce higher conversion rates. So think carefully about the target audience for this role (e.g., Are they more senior and would be excited by taking on a lot of responsibility? Is it geared towards millennials so they might be excited by your fun, open-plan office?) and tweak your EVP accordingly!

7. Highlight future prospects

According to a study by LinkedIn, future career prospects, intellectual and financial advancements are among the key factors that make an applicant accept or reject an offer. Include the potential career path that someone in this role could take, and map out how they could take on more responsibilities, learn new skills, and eventually be promoted within the organisation.

8. An effective job description is mobile-friendly

A recent study by Indeed.com indicated that 77% of people aged 16–34 use a mobile device in their job search, and that 72% of people aged 35–44 also turn to mobile. Therefore, it is imperative to make your JDs mobile-friendly!

Learn more about optimising your employer branding for the mobile generation here.

9. Mention something unique about your office culture

An effective job description highlights your company culture. Do you have bring-your-pet-to-work Fridays? Flexible schedules? Happy hour Thursdays? Remote work opportunities? Shout these out in the job description!

10. Go beyond “an equal opportunity employer”

Stating that you are ‘an equal opportunity employer’ may not be enough. To show your dedication toward building a diverse team, a few more words about can go a long way. A good example is IBM’s statement on diversity and inclusion:

IBM is committed to creating a diverse environment and is proud to be an equal opportunity employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, gender, gender identity or expression, sexual orientation, national origin, genetics, disability, age, or veteran status.

You should also highlight any inclusive benefits your company offers. For instance, if you offer paternity leave or any other childcare subsidies and facilities, definitely mention them in your JD.

With the help of some of these tips, you will have talented job-seekers excited about coming on board!

Stay tuned for more

As part of our latest campaign on employer branding, we will be sharing actionable resources and tools like these over the next few months. To receive all of our latest tips straight to your inbox, sign up for our weekly newsletter here!

Anything specific about employer branding that you’re hoping to learn? Let us know in the comments below.

Employer branding tips for Kenyan companies

Download our survey report for actionable insights from 1,200+ Kenyan professionals

Shortlister Spotlight: Meet Brenda, Applicant Care Associate

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At Shortlist, we love building our team almost as much as we love building yours! We have some pretty amazing people across our three offices who have a real passion for what they do and for the Shortlist mission.

Today’s installment of Shortlister Spotlights (a Q&A series to get to know some of our team members) stars Brenda, an Applicant Care Associate in our Kenya office!

Who is Brenda? When not at work, she’s probably in between classes, catching up with friends and family or on some of her favourite series, trying out a new recipe that involves pasta or getting some much needed shut eye! She also likes to make the most use of her commute time reading articles on Medium or a book on her current reading list. Basically embodying one of our favourite Shortlist values, Be a Whole Person.

A fashionista, party-animal or a foodie? Read on to find more about the face behind #CandidateLove!


Hi Brenda! Tell us about what you do at Shortlist:

My role involves working with candidates. Excellent candidate experience is our top priority and as such my role revolves around getting them through their applications by providing information that pertains to the roles we are recruiting for. In addition to that, I also educate both current and potential applicants on how the Shortlist process works as well as ensure that they get feedback on their applications promptly.

I also create content for our candidate blog series where we discuss different issues affecting job seekers and give guidelines on how candidates can get their dream job! Recently, we kicked off a candidates engagement series where we seek to establish deeper interactions with professionals in different fields through training and networking events.

What is your professional background, and what were you looking for in your next career step when you found Shortlist?

Before Shortlist, I was in Sales which involved customer acquisition and education. I then moved to Customer Service which was more of a support role, offering aftersales services and upselling and cross-selling products to existing customers.

When I found Shortlist, I was looking for an opportunity to take on more a challenging role in terms of the scope of responsibilities and expand my knowledge in customer experience. In addition to that, I wanted to be in a space that offers opportunities for both personal and professional growth and development.

What’s your professional superpower?

Empathy.

What’s your favourite Shortlist value and why? (Check out our values here)

Being a whole person: Ever since I joined Shortlist I feel like I’m well on my way to becoming one! As a part-time student and also working full time, it can be difficult to manage both without feeling like one end is falling off your plate. I am fortunate enough to be at Shortlist where we are constantly encouraged to be more than your job.

Because of this, I’ve tried out a couple of new things — for example, I started writing and learnt new skills in digital marketing through managing our candidate social media engagements. I have also been able to have a bit more time for friends and family thanks to the occasional flexibility that my job gives me — I’m now able to plan on when to get my work done and dedicate time to other activities.

What are the three words you would use to describe Team Shortlist?

Brilliant! Upbeat! Industrious!

Brenda also loves fashion!

What’s your favourite Shortlist memory?

There’s so much that happens on a day to day, and I make memories at Shortlist every day! My favourite so far has to be my first week at Shortlist; Aside from the warm welcome, we were kick-starting a major project, and everyone was nervous about how it was going to turn out. We were about nine team members in Shortlist (Kenya office) at the time and having each one of us embody the team spirit played a part in ensuring that the project was a success. The commitment and collaboration did enhance Shortlist One Team value way before it was even made official.

Why is the Shortlist mission important to you?

Helping candidates unlock their potential is important. Shortlist brings a new way into the recruitment process and especially how we treat candidates as we try and bring dignity back into the recruitment. On a personal level, I went through the process and felt the Shortlist difference so helping others through the same and having them feel comfortable and confident in the process is of utmost importance.

As you know, we like to give “high-fives” to recognise when our team members do something awesome. Now is your chance to make a public high five to a fellow Shortlister:

Edinah: Willing to help and always happy!! Literally, it’s contagious!

Olivia: I can’t think of a time I have approached her with questions on anything communications and content related or regarding my role with somewhat difficult responses, that she has not graciously come to my rescue!

Alvin: Ever so generous with his knowledge and experience. I think we have all benefited from Alvin’s expertise both at a professional and personal level.

Mercy: Life of the house for sure! A great listener too.

Ceverene: It’s such a pleasure to work with her; she’s very detail oriented and ensures she gets things done down to the last T.

What do you like to do outside of work?

Girl time is always fun time!

Hanging out with family and friends. This is usually my way of getting out of my head (introverts will understand).

I try and workout whenever I can, and I prefer outdoor activities/workouts. I run every weekend and try to squeeze in 15 minutes for an at-home workout. I find YouTube videos helpful for this. I also have a BBG guide which my colleague Olivia shared with me sometime back and a Shawn T guide for more intensive training.

I am trying to make reading a habit, and so I read a lot more lately. I am currently reading, Sometimes you win, sometimes you learn by John C Maxwell. The book gives insight into why we should not focus so much on our loses and always see these as an opportunity to gain some new perspective and make better decisions. It also paints a clear picture of the damage we can do to ourselves when we fail to learn from our failures or if we allow ourselves to remain defeated.

Have some alone time — I am a natural introvert, but I can be an extrovert occasionally. Hence, I do appreciate time to sit down, organise my thoughts and recharge before taking on a new project.

I also love to listen to music, and a Techno/EDM playlist is always my go-to when I feel myself getting sluggish.

Sleep! My job takes a lot of my mental energy and juggling both work, and school really drains me. This helps me to reboot.

When you were little, what did you want to be when you grew up?

I’ve never been one of those people who’ve always wanted to be one thing in life. I have had moments where I could switch up… I remember I wanted to be a musician at one point. My Mother freaked out when I told her this and insisted I study Business instead. When I was in high school, I wanted to be a doctor, thanks to my love for Biology. Then I grew up, and I just could never see myself working in bloody environments or practising on dead bodies.

I have also wanted to be an Architect like my Father — not sure what happened to this one. Last and currently on my list is a Psychologist. I love helping people and giving advice, and I believe I will get around to doing this at some point in my life. 😊

Tell us about a candidate that inspired you?

I’m always inspired by candidates, working with them every day. I admire their determination to keep going and try again even after a setback. I have encountered an applicant who has been declined for positions seven times and kept on trying until she was finally hired for the eighth role she applied to. The resilience and the determination to not give up despite many failed attempts really inspired me.

Another example is a candidate who has attended each training since we started candidate engagement events. What was inspiring about this is the effort he made towards his professional development by taking the time to attend training consistently to upskill himself.

What surprised you about working at Shortlist/ how is Shortlist different than other companies?

Shortlist has a dedicated leadership team keen to help each team member achieve their highest potential. It also offers a challenging environment where you get opportunities to try your hand at different things and learn new skills.

What are you currently reading, watching, or listening to?

Reading Sometimes you win; sometimes you learn by John C Maxwell, watching Dynasty, Star and HTGAWM, and listening to… really depends on my mood or vibe.

Meet Brenda’s bestie, Mimi

Do you have a favourite quote or saying?

My inspirational quote is If I use all I’ve got, God will be all that I’m not! — A reminder to always work your potential, put your best foot forward and believe that you will eventually get to where you want to be!

What is that place in the world you’ve not visited yet but would love to?

Italy! The country of amazing fashion, art and of course PASTA!🍝

Which two individuals, living or dead, would you love to sit next to during your flight back from the above destination?

Trevor Noah — who wouldn’t want to laugh all the way back? — and Ayodeji Awosika — he’s an amazing writer.

Final words?

You don’t have to create a masterpiece every day, some days you just need to paint.


Thank you, Brenda! We are so lucky to have you on Team Shortlist.

If you would like help building your team, let us help you. Shortlist offers a wide range of recruitment solutions that help companies build great teams.

Shortlister Spotlight: Meet Poonam, UI/ UX Designer

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At Shortlist, we love building our team almost as much as we love building yours! We have some pretty amazing people across our three offices who have a real passion for what they do and for the Shortlist mission.

The next installment of our Shortlister Spotlights (a Q&A series to get to know some of our team members) stars Poonam, a UI/UX Designer in our Mumbai office!

Who is Poonam? Given a chance, she would do anything to be taken to outer space. If you think she is lost, you will probably end up finding her in the deepest parts of the ocean exploring the mysterious marine life in an all-glass submarine. If this isn’t enough, then you should know that mimicking Gollum from Lord Of The Rings is her secret talent.

Read on to learn more about our creative, hardworking Poonam!


Hi Poonam! Tell us about what you do at Shortlist:

Besides making party hats and reinforcing good ergonomics, I help design and build empathy-driven products that empower employers and candidates to find the best job matches. All whilst trying to make them smile!

In this exhausting and tedious world of applying to jobs, I love that I can help build products that are delightful, empathetic and easy to use.

Fun times with the Shortlist family

What is your professional background, and what were you looking for in your next career step when you found Shortlist?

I have a background in fashion design (and so, strangely called P-Fash at work now) and spent close to 8 years working as a magazine stylist, a costume designer, a founder of a clothing label, a curator at a fashion week and a creative director for an innerwear brand. Was that enough? Guess not!

Last year I decided to venture into uncharted waters of digital product design and joined Shortlist as an intern to start my learning curve with strong mentorship and guidance. Little did I know I’d still be here today! Huge thank you to Rachel, Paul and Simon for giving me a shot.

What’s your favorite Shortlist value and why? (If you need a reminder, check out our blog post here!)

Hard to have a favorite- they’re all great values to live up to. I would although, give our newest value “One team” a special mention. A big part of the culture and what I’ve loved about our Shortlisters is the willingness to help and support each other and putting the team first.

What are three words you would use to describe Team Shortlist?

👉🏼 ⚡️🙌

👉🏼 🚀🌈

👉🏼 🙃👻

#Stimulating #Growth #FUN

What’s your favorite Shortlist memory?

My first day at Shortlist. I was scheduled for meetings and was spoken to in two foreign languages- tech and recruitment. Do I remember anything from that day? NO. Where was I? From hemlines and buttonholes to handmade everything to fashion shows to designer boutiques and now to assessments and competencies to hiring to coding to bots!! Hello world!

My greatest reminder, day one.

What surprised you about working at Shortlist?

Shortlist is like being a part of a vibrant family. A family you work with, play with, you struggle with, prosper with. You share responsibilities with. You feel supported with. You do better with, think different with, think human with.

And amidst all, who always has your back.

Shortlist gives you the space to be who you are and contribute to your individual, unique ways. Every Shortlister contributes significantly to making this a more shared space, space more like home.

What are you currently reading, watching, or listening to?

Reading Cyber Sexy and listening to KISS. Yikes, not sure how that sounds. And, playing LOTS of table tennis. Wait, you didn’t ask that.

What is your spirit animal?

Nudibranchs. Might be too slow to be my spirit animal, but boy, aren’t they fascinatingly beautiful?

Spot the odd one out

Anything else you want the world to know about you, Shortlist, our team? Your favorite playlist to work to? Inspirational quote? Favorite restaurant in Mumbai?

Mowgli days with some simple bare necessities 🎵

I like pineapple on my pizza,

But recently lost my dairy visa,

Sorbets and smoothies are the way to go,

Vegan, Gluten-free, Boring, and Ket-o

I love being in nature, Chlorophyll is my drug,

It’s like being given, a warm fuzzy hug

Dr. Seuss shows me all the places I’ll go,

And I continue my journey with a little disc-o,

Now give this a read as if you’re rapping,

And make it a song with some tapping!

Silly I know, but I like to rhyme,

If it lightens up your day, maybe it’s worth my time!


Thank you, Poonam! We’re so lucky to have you on Team Shortlist.

Did reading about Poonam’s experiences make you want to join our squad?

We’re hiring a Data Scientist (Mumbai or Hyderabad), Head of Product (Mumbai, Hyderabad, or Nairobi) and Recruitment Associate (Nairobi).

Apply today — we’re excited to hear from you!

If you would like help building your team, let us help you. Shortlist offers a wide range of recruitment solutions that help companies build great teams.

why good employees quit

Why do good employees quit?

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Losing a star employee can feel devastating (no matter the size and scale of your company). So it’s not surprising there’s a plethora of research on why good employees quit their job and how to mitigate that outcome. Many say that people don’t quit a job, they quit a boss, but as I dug further into the research, I found it’s a lot more complicated than that…

In particular, Facebook’s internal research about why good employees quit their job at that company, recently published in Harvard Business Review, tells a really interesting story about how to lose, and keep, great employees.

Some key takeaways on why good employees quit Facebook:

Good employees quit their job at Facebook for a few main reasons:

  • The employee no longer enjoyed their job
  • Their strengths weren’t being used
  • They weren’t growing in their career

On the flip side, this means that managers can retain great employees by customizing experiences for their people, including:

  • Enabling team members to do the work they enjoy most
  • Helping team members play to their strengths
  • Carving a path for career development that accommodates personal priorities

What does this look like in the day to day?

It’s things like making sure you know whether a top individual performer on your team actually wants to become a manager, and if they don’t, thinking through how their role and responsibilities can grow in other ways.

I’ll close by noting that that most of the research about why good employees quit – or employee turnover in general – has focused on the United States and Europe. However, at Shortlist, we recently conducted a survey with almost 6,000 Kenyan jobseekers which touched on these topics.

We found that the two most important things jobseekers are looking for in a new opportunity are (1) career growth (69.2% of respondents) and (2) alignment with company mission (14.4% of respondents). When you contrast this with those who stated the most important things were salary (only 8.5% of respondents) and stability (only 4.2% of respondents) — clearly, jobseekers are looking for a lot more than your standard 9-to-5!

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Related: Happier Workplaces: Four Essential Ingredients for Building Them