If you think you have a hard time overcoming stuff like negative Glassdoor reviews, compensation that’s not competitive with the market or some of the other challenges most commonly ascribed to employer branding initiatives, trust me, you have nothing to worry about—some recruiters out there have it way worse.
Like the guy who has to do the hiring for Louisville, Kentucky-based Diverse Erection Company, which, by the way, you sicko, specializes in crane and construction equipment rental. In fact, turns out, the market for people with erection industry experience is pretty intense, since there just aren’t enough Erection Engineers to go around. Yes, that’s a real job—and one that, like these unfortunate series of employer branding events, has real requisitions and real recruiters attached.
If you think that consumer brand and employer brand are mutually exclusive concepts, well, these 5 of the most unfortunate employer brands in talent today just might convince you otherwise.
Because no matter what the candidate experience at these companies is, you can sure as hell bet it’s probably going to involve a whole lot of awkwardness somewhere along the line….
5. Bimbo Bakeries
A lot of companies, particularly in Silicon Valley, have taken a hit for not hiring enough women or doing enough to attract female talent. Something tells me, however, that even the most misogynistic organizations still have an easier time finding female talent than Bimbo Bakeries.
This is probably why this multinational food services company has built an elaborate employer brand around “BBU,” (short for Bimbo Bakeries USA) openly eschewing the company’s actual name and building a snazzy careers site around the tagline, “Be Your Best.” Of course, describing your company’s EVP, among other benefits, as producing the “world’s greatest buns” might prove that sometimes, your best just isn’t good enough.
Then, there’s what happens when any red blooded male (hey, he’s diverse!) sees a good Bimbo…
Now Hiring: General Utility, Bun Line (Lubbok, TX)
4. Kum & Go.
If you’re from anywhere where tornadoes regularly strike trailer parks or a Sonic is considered haute cuisine, you’re probably familiar with the Kum & Go chain of convenience stores. Of course, having a business model of only locating in BFE within the highest turnover segment in the entire workforce means that candidates keep going as fast as they’re coming (not Cumming, sicko, which is of course an engineering consultancy in San Diego).
While the company has attempted to address this talent crisis by creating a sticky employer brand, this multi-ethnic Kum & Go team looks like they’re living the brand—but man, those guys sure look like they just lived the brand with a woman who looks like she could also be the face of the Bimbo recruitment marketing franchise…
On the plus side, when your candidate FAQs include this question, you’re guessing that their qualified, interested and available applicants include anyone with a pulse, a Corinthian Colleges degree or a CIR certification:
How do I fill out the education section if I do not have my high school diploma or GED?
If you have not received a High School Diploma or GED, please fill in your school’s information and mark “No” for diploma received.
Of course, since they run on Taleo, it still recommends allocating 40-45 minutes to fill out the application, even if, as the next question down informs potential applicants, “If you do not have any work history, you may put any job such as babysitting or lawn mowing or you may put “N/A” in all required fields.”
At least they’ve got candidate experience down cold. Just don’t ask what’s in the pipeline.
Now Hiring: Division Vice President (to “perform overall performance” by promoting the “Kum & Go Vision.”)
3. Boring Business Systems.
Now, this is transparency (although I’m guessing ADP is probably fighting them for a license fee to use the tagline that’s by all rights theirs)—a company called Boring Business Systems,whose career site copy literally consists of this riveting call to action:
“Do you feel like your career or job is stagnant and unrewarding? Tired of feeling like a number lost in the corporate sea? Are you interested in making history with a locally-owned company in their 90th year of business? Join our team!”
There is, of course, no attempt at adding stuff like images, fancy branding or anything but a black font on a white background. I like this company a lot, because they might be the only employer out there who’s obviously not hyperbolizing their “opportunities” like, at all.
That is living your brand, my friends.
Now Hiring: Interested parties for all positions should submit their resumes to firstname.lastname@example.org. Yes, really.
2. Fuchs Lubricants.
I really don’t need to describe this one anymore than this:
Yes, I see why they would need a filler. They should try poaching from the Kum & Go.
1. LeCoq Cuisine:
Pity Lisette Martinez, the HR Generalist whose e-mail address is prominently listed as the place where any interested applicants for this regional frozen foods supplier should submit their resumes. Because, well, while apparently the French naming convention was a good idea to appeal to gourmands, I’m not sure this must be the easiest call to get returned.
“Hi, I’m calling from LeCoq Cuisine…” is probably as far as you get into that cold call; not to mention the fact that, well, it doesn’t get much better online; the career site states:
“We strive for a diverse workforce while hiring, promoting, and tapping the best and the brightest talent to realize our goal of “perfection in every bite.’”
I’m not sure this is exactly the kind of thing I’d bite if I were your average candidate. Although I’m sure the promised Tour of the LeCoq Cuisine Factory promised by this site will do a great job telling me all about the culture of LeCoq—I’m just not falling for that one again.
See? It really could be worse.
Matt Charney is the Executive Editor for Recruiting Daily, whose flagship property, RecruitingBlogs, is the world’s largest social network and content sharing platform for recruiting and HR professionals. Matt oversees editorial strategy and content marketing for RecruitingDaily’s portfolio of online properties. Prior to joining RecruitingBlogs, Matt served in marketing leadership roles at leading HR technology companies like Talemetry, CornerstoneOnDemand & Monster. Matt began his career as a corporate recruiter for such companies as Walt Disney and Warner Bros.
Matt has been named as one of the top 25 influencers in recruiting by publications like the Huffington Post, Glassdoor, CareerBuilder and LinkedIn, and has been recognized as one of the 2015 HR Game Changers by HR Magazine adn SHRM, the 2015 HRO Superstar for Analyst Excellence and the 2014 Top Recruiting Blogger by Social Talent. His blog mattcharney.com was also named one of the top 15 business blogs to follow by WordPress in 2014. Matt serves as a member of the advisory boards for the Candidate Experience Awards, Rolepoint, RecruitiFi, Take the Interview, HiringSolved, Universum and Textio.
Follow him @MattCharney or connect with him on LinkedIn (www.linkedin.com/in/mattcharney).