Employment story – a magnet you should use to attract people

The power of storytelling: incorporating narratives in your recruitment approach

Science has finally proved it: human brains and bodies are wired to enjoy a good story. To put it simply, if you read or hear a nicely put storyline, your brain reacts as if you were experiencing the events yourself. These insights are put to good use in marketing strategies. But recently storytelling has started progressively making its way into recruitment practice as well.

Employment story – a magnet you should use to attract people

Storytelling in recruitment scored particularly high when the companies understood the importance of eliciting inspiration, avoiding the old-school strategy of quoting bland facts that Generation Y has grown tired of and, instead, building a bridge towards a deeper company-candidate relationship. Thus, digital storytelling has redesigned the way businesses draw their corporate identity. The story made it fully possible to broadcast a complex frame of ideas, values, product lines, collective corporate imprint and core expertise.

In fact, at the recruiting stage people respond to what is called an employment story – a narrative that allows them to take a look at what life as your employee would be like. Crafting an impactful, well-written story allows recruiters to raise the level of emotional connection with the candidates and eventually to put the ball in their court: to stimulate applications. Storytelling in HR essentially humanizes the company brand. Companies can use storytelling on the site, on their Careers page, in job postings, and in social media.

Here are some suggestions that will help you engineer a successful storytelling campaign inside your recruiting process:

  • Identify relatable values at your company’s heart – and build a story around them

As noted in Forbes: “A company brand has many human-like characteristics. It has a personality, an identity and creates an experience through how it communicates and behaves.” These traits are crucial for employer branding construction. Add a word to your story on company case studies that sharply demonstrate the values at its core. Never miss a chance to fill a job posting with details on your corporate culture and day-to-day life in the office; create the so-called “participation effect”. Remember that nowadays candidates don’t enjoy applying for positions in “anonymous” environments.

  • Don’t make it clichéd

Put yourself in the jobseekers’ shoes: they would prefer unique, gripping stories rather than plain one-sentence EVPs. Find your company’s voice: Generation Y and Generation Z candidates appreciate authenticity and originality and need to be reached on an emotional level. Metaphorically speaking, your classic job description or platitudes from the “About us” section are bare walls, whereas a narrative element with which you frame them is the wallpaper: something important, almost personal to make one feel at home!

  • Craft a story that’s right for the audience

Half of the success in storytelling lies in understanding the audience and what will resonate with their needs. If are you trying to attract senior management candidates, put the spotlight on the company’s growth. Are you in search of a team leader? Point up the values of collaboration and the goals to achieve. Targeting someone for junior staff? Underline the learning opportunities and great career prospects.

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