There are plenty of creative ways that visual storytelling can set your organization apart in a competitive labor market.
The difficulty of recruiting in today's tight labor market is no secret. Creating engaging employment branding and telling your story differently can position your business ahead of the competition as you look to attract top talent. To that end, organizations are now taking a more creative approach to telling their story and using visuals.
Images Are Powerful
Images can tell a thousand words, facilitate deeper connections, generate more interest in a topic and be extremely persuasive. With power like that, think of what images can do if they are thoughtfully applied to recruiting.
When it comes to employer branding, images can tell a more comprehensive story about the most important elements of business: people, values, mission, impact, culture, environment and more. For example, when a person explains their office space, it can be difficult to describe it in so few words before losing the interest of the audience. However, a photo or video of your office space can immediately deliver that same message in only a few seconds. And in today's world where simplicity and speed drive our experience, visuals are your secret weapon.
Some visuals need a supporting story to ensure that their messaging is received correctly. Using a simple formula of the right images and the right story in the right format can enable you to promote a genuine and humanized employer brand with a competitive edge in the game of talent acquisition. Before you start building your image library and crafting supporting content that is aligned with your employer brand, consider all the channels you could use in your visual storytelling strategy.
There's no one more qualified to tell the story of a business than its employees. They can talk about their career paths at the organization, explain what they do in their roles and describe how they contribute to their projects and the business in a fresh and organic fashion.
Using video testimonials from employees talking about their work experience has become an employer branding best practice for many reasons. For instance, they are more engaging and authentic than written narratives, and they can offer a valuable preview for job seekers and help to persuade candidates to act.
If your employees are uncomfortable with producing a short video, ask them to take candid action photos while on the job to correspond with their written messages. This can add character and still tell a visual story in a meaningful way.
Showcasing your career progression strategy is among the top five factors that appeal to job seekers, reports Forbes. Candidates want to know if an organization invests in training programs to develop their skills and whether it will provide the room to grow. Because career progression is a top priority on most checklists, it's a perfect opportunity to leverage visual storytelling by creating an eye-catching infographic to outline the career path.
One creative example of this practice would be to include an infographic in the shape of a road map. Start by identifying each phase in the career path and pairing it with a simple and fun icon. Next, incorporate programs that are available for training. Finally, bring it all together by showcasing each item on a timeline that clearly displays an achievable career progression plan. This can show candidates that your organization is committed to helping each employee reach their goals.
Another great infographic example would be to show career progression through the success stories of tenured employees who are now in leadership positions. Use before and after photos of employees that show the career steps they took to get where they are today. Promoting these messages indicates to candidates that career success can become a reality for your employees.
Creative Job Ads
Job descriptions are the central selling point for applicants, so why not tell a story? Start by using conversational language, painting a realistic picture of company culture and positioning the reader at the center of it all — as if they already belong at your organization.
Then consider writing a creative job ad that highlights key benefits and promoting the ad instead of your job description. Add an icon, image or video and link to your newly created job description online with the link to apply included. Remember, it's difficult to stand out among the millions of other job descriptions online, but storytelling can help. You can always link to a job description in the ad to offer more details as the candidate gains interest.
It's a best practice to refresh job descriptions before posting a new role to ensure that they're written in a conversational, current and engaging manner.
Share on Social Media
Social media isn't slowing down. Over 5 billion people globally are using some form of social media every day — discovering trends, watching videos, and being influenced by what they see and hear. Your organization would be missing out on a prime talent market if its employer brand has a weak presence on social media.
Getting started and creating content are naturally the biggest hurdles for most businesses. But the great thing about social media is that it's intentionally designed to be unfiltered and candid — so don't overthink it. One simple way to build your social content would be to allow employees to share real stories, pictures and videos about their work, colleagues and experiences.
Giving your employees some freedom to create content humanizes your brand and grants candidates the opportunity to visualize the lived experience and develop a meaningful connection to your business as a great place to work. It's also cost-effective and can empower your employees to share their voice. However, it's important to make sure you train your employees on the proper use of social media platforms, policies and guidelines for how to share employment brand messages. Practice some quality control to ensure positive messages are filling your pages.
There are plenty of creative ways that visual storytelling can set your organization apart in a competitive labor market. Using these methods to your advantage as a recruiter, hiring manager or marketing professional can help you to improve every aspect of your employer brand strategy.