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Engaging a team in an employer branding project

Reading Time: 6 minutes

Engaging a team in an employer branding project will increase employee engagement. Capture their stories for recruitment marketing content that will reach, and inspire, the right candidates.

Sometimes you are recruiting for a group that’s magic. Candidates walk into an in-person interview undecided and walk out trying to close you.

With team value proposition and team story content, you bring your ace-in-the-hole to the start of the process. The team can cast their spell on a wider audience, not just the candidates who’ve advanced to a final step.

Shavonne Thomas, North America Employer Brand and Recruitment Marketing Business Partner at AstraZeneca, knew a magical team (they literally cure diseases). They were a team of scientists who were also engaged, excited, and photoshopping their selfies onto a mock career site to see what their own branding content would look like.

Shavonne knew to capture the Biopharmaceutical Division’s culture, she needed to understand the team value proposition, support with stories and create content that resonated with candidates. But, it all starts with team buy in. Shavonne further engaged the Biopharmaceutical Division to bring their employee experiences to candidates. Here are the steps she took in engaging the team in the employer branding project.

First: She showed what’s possible

The team approached Shavonne about creating a culture video. Sure, she said. She could help with that. And, what if they hired a storytelling expert to uncover the team’s most compelling experiences to inform the content? What if they were captured their natural team energy and cohesion on camera, working together in the lab and during a team meeting? How about a landing page featuring their team, in addition to their paragraph on the careers site? And what about social media content, like quote cards and a story short cut from the longer video?

Showing the team what’s possible further involves them in the process and expands the scope of creation and promotion. It’s not one video, it’s a marketing campaign that captures and communicates their team experience on multiple channels.

Second: She injected the project with purpose

Teams that aren’t in talent acquisition and recruitment marketing might not know the cold hard truth: candidates want to hear from employees more than anyone else. Your employee storytellers are the experts on your culture. Their experiences make the most persuasive and insightful content.

The stories they tell directly influences who joins their team. This is an important project that will impact their team dynamic and experience in the future.

Shavonne made the team feel like stars by treating their stories as critical to the content (because it is!). It was so important, experts were coming in to help them best tell their story and capture compelling images. It was so important, they needed an entire day for the project. It was so important, we’re having a call beforehand so we’re best prepared to make the most of the day.

Third: She encouraged ideas and feedback

The team couldn’t wait for the interview day. They had a few ideas for questions that might prompt good responses from their teammates. Could they submit them to the employer branding story experts?

‘Definitely!’ Shavonne said.

After seeing the landing page, the team wanted to share with the world. They were attending an industry conference. They thought, “How do we bring our team culture to our industry peers?’ They asked if they could hand out cards with the landing page on the back. Shavonne’s team designed and printed them.

When you create team content the group is connected to and proud of, they’ll share widely with their networks.

Deliverables and Results from the Team Branding Project

Shavonne and Stories Inc. were able to uncover differentiating themes within the BPD team: good examples of collaboration within the team, their love of science, and camaraderie. The BPD team told Shavonne they love having their story defined with creative assets that bring them to life, and they’re currently in talks for a phase 2 that include team members in the UK. From one interview day, the team received:

  • Recruitment Landing Page for BPD, to bring to life the team
    • Video stories of employees sharing their perspective, tidbits and experiences while in BPD at MedImmune
    • Insights from the storytellers during their interviews – Shavonne used their quotes for internal recruitment campaigns as well
    • Real photos and b-roll video of employees in the labs
    • Organic social media  content about BPD on already established recruitment channels (Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn)

When you have a team that sells itself well during the interview process, think like Shavonne: bring the experience to a wider population of candidates by branding the team. Capturing that magic is possible, especially when you’re deliberate about engaging the team throughout the process. Show them what’s possible, inject the project with purpose, and encourage their feedback for content they’ll be proud to share with their network and industry peers.

Learn more about team storytelling — download our guide!

This article originally appeared in Recruiting Daily.