An interesting thing is happening right now… there are more employer brand jobs open now than ever. EVER. I haven’t seen anything like it in the past few years. It’s a good… actually, it’s a great time to be in the employer brand space.
So what’s happening?
Well, maybe six or seven years back, it seemed that everyone was getting into the social recruiting game. They were hiring recruiters or others with good social media chops to help usher the age of social into the HR and recruiting space. But as that work has evolved, and companies have begun to realize a social media presence is just a distribution channel for how you express your employer brand… well, they’ve realized they need to build out an employer brand function. So social recruiting has evolved for some into recruitment marketing which is evolving more holistically into employer brand for a lot of teams.
And lest we not forget, a few years back, big, bad LinkedIn began throwing around “talent brand” as “a strategic priority for most forward-thinking companies,” which I think legitimized it even further and underscored the need.
Add in HBR among others who are saying employer brand is keeping CEOs up at night… and that most CEOs believe they own employer brand. Huh. That’s interesting, right?
Just a few little milestones along the way. And yes, EB has been around for longer than that. I know, some of you have been doing it since the beginning of time. I gotcha. No one is taking that away from you. But, now more than ever, there’s a high level of interest in the space. And that means jobs. Which I’m LOVING seeing.
So how do you get involved?
Well, let’s start with the jobs. For starters, the jobs I’m seeing open tend to be at the mid-level and fewer at the leadership level (as many talent acquisition leaders are continuing to own and shape the function). But a few director and above roles are popping up occasionally. For someone who is looking to transition from a recruiting role into something else… I’d say start looking right around you within your organization as a place to start. Or consider looking externally at the jobs that keep popping up. A simple Indeed search using the keywords “recruitment marketing,” “talent brand,” “employer brand” and “employment brand” will yield you results. Also check out this round up from Employer Brand International’s CEO which offers an analysis of 32 different EB jobs.
Get smart about branding and marketing in general. Forget about employer brand for a minute. Please, please, please just get smart on brand and marketing fundamentals if this is the space for you. Do you know what a persona is? What’s the difference between brand essence and positioning and pillars and a value proposition? How do you write a creative brief? All this translates to employer brand. When I started getting interested in the space, I read books like The Brand Gap and Kellogg on Marketing. Fundamentals are good.
Get exposed to the EB landscape and players. To get some flavor for what the space is up to, I like the monthly #EBChat that a few folks in the employer brand space have started up. Follow the hashtag #EBChat or @TalentBrandOrg for news on the next chat. It’s typically hosted by various EB pros in the space and it’s a super passionate group of pros driving it. And then you can follow some EB pros and leaders who are doing it right and doing it well—here are five I recommend:
And there are many, many more out there.
It’s awesome watching the EB space explode. There’s lots of good sharing happening amongst the EB pros and consultants in the trenches. And there’s a lot of great work being done by companies big and small who are looking to get job seekers and employees alike drinking the kool-aid that is their EB. It’s gonna be fun in a few years time to look back at how far we’ve come… so come get yerself a job in EB. Giddy up, let’s go!
Jessica Lee is a VP of TA at Marriott International where she leads a team that enables the company to think big, broad and boldly about all things talent acquisition and in effect, keeps them relevant and ahead of the curve in how they attract and acquire top talent. Don’t be fooled by that fancy pants title and description though, she’s still an everyday HR gal in the trenches at the core. SPHR certified, a decade and a half into trench HR life… she can whip up a corrective action plan or source for your purple squirrel in a heartbeat.