Want to Reach Tomorrow’s Leaders? You Need a Multi-Channel Approach

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To reach tomorrow’s corporate leaders, companies today not only need to have robust career sites, but they need to be as multi-channel today as are the young men and women who want to work for them.

PotentialPark, the Swedish recruitment market research firm, says college students and recent grads turn in large numbers to corporate career sites for information about companies they may want to work. But, they also expect those companies to have a presence elsewhere — especially on places like Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, and on blogs, too.

The career site is fine for providing fundamental information about the company, but it’s a one-way communication. Young adults want more interactivity, so they expect their future employer to talk with them on social media channels.

“Miles ahead of the employers”

Says PotentialPark, in its just released annual Online Talent Communication study:

Today’s graduates are miles ahead of the employers in using career websites, social, and professional networks as well as in their open mindset for smartphone usage. They expect employers to follow them and to pave their personal way to the right, fulfilling career — they go online for the perfect match.”

Consequently, say the researchers, “Duplicating the career website content and dumping it on social networks is not the solution … Facebook is not perceived as a place for jobs and applications. Instead, employers open up for direct interaction and a deep look behind the scenes.”

PotentialPark-Rankings-2013Surveying almost 27,000 students and graduates in Asia, Europe, and the U.S. regarding online, social, and mobile recruitment, PotentialPark found what the most effective companies already know: while everywhere these young adults look in large numbers (74 percent globally; 85 percent in the U.S.) to a company’s website, almost unanimously they say employers should also be on at least one social media site.

On a global basis, that site should be Facebook, according to 61 percent of the respondents. U.S. respondents picked LinkedIn as their first choice, by 71percent to 64 percent for Facebook.

Even if you have a presence on both those sites, and a strong career site, too, don’t be lulled into believing you are well covered. PotentialPark says the best companies have a broader presence, especially in providing mobile access and career apps.

Wanted: Not just a career, but a perfect match

Among the key findings of the U.S. PotentialPark study, which also apply globally:

  • Job seekers do not want just a career, they want the perfect match. Therefore they expect employers to give them personalized insights and recommendations on each channel.
  • The mobile revolution is imminent. The majority of job seekers (59 percent) are ready and waiting to get started today, and many (26 percent) already have. However, employers are only slowly giving mobile access to careers and jobs.
  • Employers who do not go multichannel may miss out more than they think. A lagging online and mobile recruitment strategy can erode their employer brand.

Who’s doing the best job among the world’s leading companies? According to PotentialPark, it’s Accenture, Bertelsmann, Ernst & Young, Intel, and Microsoft. These companies topped the list in both Europe and the U.S. for having the best online recruitment communication. (Asia rankings are not yet available.) The top companies have a presence on eight different communication platforms.

“Employers need transparency, authenticity, and creativity to win the audience’s attention and interest online, across all the channels that talents use,” concludes the PotentialPark report.

They add: “This is going to be the challenge in the online war for talent in the year 2013.”