Firms need to realise the significance of promoting their employer brand

Tags: Knowledge

Interview | Sebastien Hampartzoumian, senior managing director, Michael Page (India)

One of the world’s leading recruitment consultancies, Michael Page, was founded in 1976 in London. The organisation today has a strong presence in key market segments across the globe.

n It is said that developing talent pipeline is a key challenge for firms today. What should Indian companies do to overcome this challenge and create a strong talent pipeline? What role can social media play here?

Developing a talent pipeline has two key issues, drawing talent into the business and then retaining and nurturing it. Social media clearly has a role to play in showcasing the brand and values of the organisation to attract passive talent. Indian firms need to realise the significance of promoting their employer brand — it’s cost effective, quick and far-reaching. Processes should be put in place to create an association between your brand and what comes to mind when people think of working for your organisation. Most candidates want to work for a company they’ve heard of and are familiar with. With regard to maintaining and nurturing talent within an organisation, social media is a useful information tool but isn’t the key driver in ensuring that your talent stays within the business.

n Social media has changed the recruitment trend in the country and industries are talking about recruitment 3.0. How do you see the strategy taking over the Indian market?

Social media is obviously a much talked about aspect of recruitment. It undoubtedly offers individuals an excellent opportunity to access opportunities and for companies to reach out to talent. So, it increases the possible contact points for all parties. Indian firms are now adopting social media to know prospective candidates better. They are looking for the top ten searches on the candidate’s name on Google, number of twitter followers as well as size and quality

of recommendations on LinkedIn.

Adapting social media tools coupled with strong analytics will allow a more focused approach towards recruitment. However, one must keep in mind that social media is part of the attraction recruitment process. Once the process moves into the assessment cycle, there is limited impact from social media.

n What are the key imperatives of a great social media recruitment strategy?

Visibility, attraction and ease of use consistent with company brand, positioning and sector is crucial. While LinkedIn and Facebook offer the largest quantity of potential candidates, other websites offer quality candidates in terms of niche skill sets. For recruitment processes where skills and competencies have to be checked and matched with the recruiter’s needs, an individual’s education and professional experience are vital sections of the profile.

LinkedIn is the largest business networking social media site that offers easy access to people dedicated to finding jobs. Organisations should ensure that the company and employees have updated pages as potential employees will do their own research on the site to help make decisions. As mentioned earlier, the organisation’s social media presence is a reflection of the company, so make sure the pages are updated frequently and display your culture and business.

n It’s essential that job seekers learn to understand and effectively navigate the social space in order to improve their chances of getting noticed by employers, ultimately enhancing their job prospects. What are the key imperatives that job seekers need to practice?

First impressions count. With social media, one does not have control over the number of people able to form opinions. This can magnify a thousand-fold. The more information you give, the more your professional employer can know about you in the first glance. Therefore, you must ensure you are clear in your message. What works and makes an impact with your friends on social media may not be what your future employer will see. People are responsible for what they want to feature on their social media profile. It is their responsibility to manage it and be aware of the potential risks if they are over-exposed. Customise and ensure your image and brand reflect the professional aspects you wish to convey.

n India Inc is positive on hiring this year and a lot of companies are looking out for talent. How can organisations use social media to project themselves as employers of choice to better engage with potential talent? What are the vital steps that firms need to take?

Social media gives companies a fantastic opportunity to reach out and to engage potential talent for their organisation. To do this they must identify the right platform that is most used by their target audience —LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook, or all three. Decide on the message and demonstrate how the culture and the values align with the individuals. Ensure your social media offering has a positive impact and grabs their attention. Make sure you can also handle the response. Finally, multimedia is an ongoing process, don’t start strongly with your presence and then tail off. You’ve then wasted what you’ve built. Maintain the level and ensure you can handle the response.

n What are the best recruitment practices of the west that you think India must replicate?

Gather feedback through listening posts (for example surveys, job sites, focus groups, job posting audits) to monitor the experience you are creating for candidates. Based on the feedback, create actionable steps that will result in a more impactful and truly exceptional social media based recruitment experience.


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