Friday, April 10, 2009

The Candidate Journey - from applicant to employee

Published in 2007, “Recruitment 2020” was the result of nine months of research that focused on developing possible futures - or scenarios - for recruitment, and to identify their implications for the industry and for public policy more broadly.

The paper in its entirety is widely available online and is an interesting read for those with direct recruitment responsibilities and even more so for those who run businesses of any substantial size.

Amongst the many findings, they identified the need to bring the recruitment process “into brand” and use the engagement of candidates as a window through which outsiders can see how you operate and make a decision on whether or not they wish to join such a team.

(From Recruitment 2020, pg 77)
Align the recruitment experience with client ethos

At a time when job seekers are showing an increasing interest not just in levels of pay but also in a much wider set of factors - including how it feels to work somewhere - the experience of being recruited matters.
Organisations with a relaxed, business-like or playful ethos (and brand) need to ensure that the process of recruitment itself reflects that ethos. When candidates go through recruitment processes they are also gathering information and making judgments about their potential employers - meaning that the process must reflect the organisation itself. This requires differentiated processes designed not just to identify the right competencies but also to create the right impression.

We do have clients in China that have already identified this and are working towards improving their performance in the “candidate journey,” not just to “prove” that they do what they say they do…value open communication, respect individuals, act with integrity etc, but also to begin the cultural induction of the candidate by exposing them to the organisational culture from the very first engagement. The result is a new employee who has a cultural awareness and affinity with the organisation on his very first day at work. On-boarding process, assimilation and retention can all be improved as a result and best of all, you will have created a brand advocate who will no doubt go tell his friends what a great place to work he has found.

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

And you thought you had recruitment challenges...

Top jobs go empty in deadly Chinese mining center
(Associated Press Writer Christopher Bodeen)

BEIJING – Position open: Mayor of Chinese coal mining city notorious for frequent fatal accidents and heavy pollution. Prospective candidates: None.

State media reports on Wednesday said the jobs of mayor and Communist Party boss in the northern city of Linfen have gone unfilled for more than six months because no one wants the potentially career-killing positions.

The former incumbents were fired after a mining accident last September that killed 270 people.

Replacements have yet to be found from within the local government and attempts to recruit candidates from outside the area have so far failed, the China Daily and other newspapers reported.

"The ideal candidates must be willing to risk their political career," it said. Job tenure will likely last only until the next accident, China Daily said.

Asked about the reports, an official at Linfen's government propaganda office said new leaders were expected "soon."

"It's not as serious as media reported," said the man, who refused to give his name as is common among Chinese bureaucrats.

Despite the axing of numerous officials, changes in political leadership at the local level have done little to curb the carnage in China's mining industry, the world's deadliest. Most accidents are blamed on corruption, poor regulation, and cutting corners on safety to feed the growing economy's insatiable demand for coal.

Friday, March 20, 2009

Recruiters Placing More Emphasis on Corporate Branding

A recent survey by recruitment software company Standout Jobs and reveals that 43% of the companies polled are pulling their spending from Internet job boards and re-directing those resources to better showcase their brand to potential employment candidates.

The shift away from job boards is a response to current market conditions, which have made more high-value candidates available to companies looking to capitalize on the market's turnaround with strategic hires, reveals the survey. And while the current market remains grim, optimism still dictates many of the respondents' near term hiring plans, with more than 30% planning to increase hiring during the second and third quarter of 2009: adding the fourth quarter raises that number to 41%.

Referrals are still the most popular avenue for sourcing jobs, but the companies polled indicate their Web site or career page as being the next most valuable vehicle for finding candidates. Job boards, while useful for generating a higher volume of resumes, are being criticized for not delivering qualified candidates, which are seen as the key for surviving the tough current economic climate and building future organizational strength.

"We decided to create this poll to get a sense of how bad or good the market for hiring really was at the organizational level, rather than continuing to rely on media reports which have been overwhelmingly negative," says Benjamin Yoskovitz, Standout Jobs CEO and founder. "With the help of our poll partner,, we asked 450 internal company recruiters a number of questions having to do with their hiring practices and plans for the immediate future.

The results showed cautious optimism, with many expecting to start hiring again in the third quarter. We also learned their standards and processes have changed, and now strategic hiring is the name of the game." Companies are putting more emphasis on engaging quality talent in an effort to show they're a 'great place to work' for the right candidates. Creating a better fit between employer and employee is seen as a key to hiring success, and employment branding attracts the right type of candidates through more open, regular and interactive communication with applicants.

This trend was evident in the poll question "Which recruiting trends do you think could improve your recruiting efforts?" Of the respondents, 239 claim "social networks," while 187 respondents indicate candidate relationship management was high on their list of priorities. The survey further indicates that search engine optimization was also a favorite followed by "other," blogs, online video, and Twitter.

Companies are clearly interested in re-marketing to job seekers, treating people well in addition to delivering a strong candidate experience. Even though the companies polled indicated they were increasing their dependence on their sites and social tools to engage candidates, the majority of them had no specific strategies for recruiting Generation X and Y applicants, which have grown up with the web and are more likely than their older colleagues to use it for job hunting, socializing and networking.

Friday, March 6, 2009

Dominos Delivers

What I love about this recruitment drive from Dominos Pizza in Australia is the visible input and support of their marketing team and CEO in getting out this media release.

It’s obviously a great message during times of job-loss and much easier to get media attention but still, they have done a great job on their careers site with a clearly articulated and compelling candidate value proposition (CVP) for all vacant positions.

Turns out Dominos is a fun place to work, pay is good, there are serious training and development opportunities and real potential for long-term careers even from entry level driver / delivery jobs.

Their careers site is worth a visit as it ticks a lot of boxes. One feature that I love is where they answer the questions of parents who might be considering the benefits and dangers of having their little ones take their first foray into employment.

Also, by suggesting that they have traditionally relied on students and part-timers but that they are ready for applications from others, they open the door for a much wider group of potential employees by driving home the message that Dominos is a viable long-term career option.

An influx of these employees will most certainly reduce staff turnover and directly impact the bottom line of this listed company whose investors and stakeholders should all be happy with this public and highly professional display of respect to the management of their human capital.

Media release:

Pizza chain has 2,500 job vacancies

Tuesday March 3, 2009, 4:20 pm

While the mining and banking sectors lay off thousands of workers, a major food chain says it has 2,500 vacancies.

Domino's Pizza is seeking casual pizza deliverers across its 434 stores in Australia.

The chain is bucking the trend which has seen 3,000 jobs lost in Queensland's mining sector alone this year, and hundreds in other industries such as banking and retail.

Domino's chief executive Don Meij said the economic downturn was turning many families to more affordable takeaway food.

"As a result this has seen our stores experience the need for additional staff to fulfil orders and deliveries," Mr Meij said.

Domino's has launched a recruitment website, to help fill its vacancies.

With a minimum hourly rate of $10.78 for the first three months plus $1.73 for each delivery, the traditional job takers are university students.

But Domino's corporate operations manager Kerri Hayman said there were career paths at the firm, which might have ex-bank workers and miners lining up for jobs.


Monday, March 2, 2009

Fear Not! Web2.0 is here to stay...

One of the single most compelling reasons for a company to undertake some research and development of their employer brand is simply to position the organisation to perform better in what is now known as the "recruitment2.0" or "web2.0" landscape.

In this world, honesty and transparency are key so only having indulged in some navel-gazing, and taken a stance in some key areas, are organisations in a position to participate in conversations about themselves as an employer in these forums.

It is a fact that "the crowd controls the message" now and HR are indeed correct to have reservations about this but if you choose to stake no claims of your own, or worse, continue to use the white-lies of yesteryear, then you are genuinely and completely at the mercy of the crowd – and this, it seems to me, should be even more of a concern!

The following article from CIPD picks up on the concerns of HR in general when presented with the reality and opportunities of a web2.0 world.


Avoid ‘Facebook fear factor’, CIPD tells HR

A new CIPD report finds that HR is failing to take advantages of "the many opportunities presented by Web 2.0 technology." The report suggests that the potential benefits of this technology are being overlooked because of fears about potential employee misbehaviour and a reluctance to lose control over its use. It warns that HR faces losing out on the possibility of playing an important role in guiding the adoption of Web 2.0 to enhance organisational and business performance.

The report (‘Web 2.0 and Human Resource Management: ‘Groundswell' or hype?') lays out a systems framework to help HR professionals think about how web-based content (in the form of texts, videos, opinions and other applications) can be transferred - through new Web 2.0 social media technologies - into important HR outputs. As well as offering clear guidance about Web 2.0, it cites a number of case-studies illustrating how organisations can reap the benefits of these technologies (in areas such as collaboration, learning & development, employer branding and engagement) while simultaneously mitigating the risk of employee abuse.

CIPD organisation & resourcing adviser Vanessa Robinson says "Web 2.0 provides employees with new tools for collaboration and knowledge-sharing. Its open, democratic nature, however, has meant that many HR professionals are focusing on the negative side, which is a shame as Web 2.0 is here to stay.

"HR is in danger of playing catch-up as a profession in failing to advance the interests of organisations by navigating them through the undoubted benefits. As well as limiting potential abuse by carefully selecting the technology used, HR professionals must develop and communicate clear and well-informed policies to help employees understand what behaviour is acceptable and what is clearly not.

"Organisations will be increasingly faced with employees seeking to use Web 2.0 social media technologies at work, so rather than ignore them or ban them outright they will need to adopt sensible policies that fit a particular context. There are no one-size-fits all policies because contexts differ, which is evident from our research and case studies."

Monday, February 23, 2009

On Video CV’s:

From an recruitment industry point of view, it seems that whilst everyone can appreciate the benefits of a multimedia CV, and there are even some enterprises out there promoting the practice, it didn’t seem to me to be gaining a lot of steam over 2008.

Post-financial crisis however and suddenly "talent" is a buyers market again and job-seekers will need to impress if they want to get a foot in the door.

Are we going to see more video CV’s in 2009 from applicants wanting to differentiate themselves? And if you are a recruiter…are you ready and willing to receive them? See what these recruiters think...

Multimedia CV: Put your best face forward
By Lia Timson
The Sydney Morning Herald
Published: 07 February 2009

Get in front of potential employers with your own video.

When Matt Niedzwiedz wanted a job in event management, he prepared a multimedia CV package to showcase his talents.

The party organiser had spent many years working on the music scene in Warsaw and London and wanted to demonstrate his skills to potential employers. So he produced a 30-minute presentation, burnt it to mini-CD and mailed it away. He also produced a shorter version that he posted on video-sharing website YouTube.

"I was quite known in Europe but here I would be nobody," he says. "I wanted to show potential employers my way of working."

Niedzwiedz is not alone. An increasing number of tech-savvy jobseekers, particularly generation Ys, are using webcams, camera phones, editing software and online video-sharing sites to promote their talents and stand out from a long line of hopefuls. While there are subtleties to the technique, it can pay off.

The human resources manager at accounting firm Pitcher Partners, Melissa Banek, says she likes to see CVs on video.

"It provides a great snapshot of the candidate's profile, experience and education in [their] words," she says. "I find it an efficient use of time. The employer can work out which questions they would like to
further probe in an interview and not waste time going over old ground."

However, Banek warns some employers could immediately exclude you from a face-to-face interview if they are unimpressed with your video CV.

A browse of YouTube, where many jobseekers post their CVs as a supplement to targeted mail-outs, shows the diverse range of video resumes being produced.

Some have very poor production values and feature applicants giving lacklustre performances. Others dazzle the viewer with their high quality and confident presentation.

The director of non-profit placement agency NGO Recruitment, Richard Green, says he is yet to receive a video CV but expects that day is not far off. He believes a video CV could work well for jobs where media skills and unconventional thinking are an advantage, such as head of communications at an organisation like Greenpeace.

The talent manager for advertising specialist recruiter The Ladder, James Greet, says job applicants considering a video CV should make sure it is primarily focused on their experience and capacity to do the job.

"It may be a very creative way of building excitement around [you], as far as it's well directed, informed and entertaining," he says. "Done badly, it could ruin your chances."

Mature-aged workers can also take advantage of the technology, according to Sam Leon, the principal of XMSolutions, an over-45s recruiting firm. He favours web conferencing and video CVs over phone chats and preliminary person-to-person meetings with jobseekers. He says employers also appreciate avoiding travel expenses for first interviews of interstate candidates.

"It gives a feeling for the candidate's personality and whether they are genuine," Leon says. "You can pick up body language, watch their eyes and get them to hold up things like diplomas.

"Over the next five years, video CVs will be as normal as printed or emailed CVs, without question."

When Tourism Queensland recently sought applications for a dream job on Hamilton Island, it insisted on video CVs in the first round to get a feel for the applicants. The role pays $150,000 for six months of work, living on the island and promoting it to the world. More than 8000 applications have been received.

The area manager for recruiter Drake International, Zipporah Szalay, says video CVs should be carefully prepared. Drake has a professionally staffed production studio to help candidates properly represent themselves. It regularly produces 30-second videos for candidates, especially those looking to work overseas.

"We've done it for Asian students going back to their countries to work, even doctors and nurses," Szalay says.

"You can demonstrate a cultural fit [with the company] by the way you communicate your passion and charisma and they can click on a link to your CV. But it doesn't work for everything. Professionalism is the key. You need to really take care because you only get one shot at it."

Niedzwiedz has learned valuable lessons from his video CV. He received just one response from 60 CVs sent out. He now believes his 30-minute presentation was too much of a demand on a company's time.

He hopes to make another assault on the job market soon, using the insights he has gained.

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

"hungry designers wanted"

This is definitely still one of the best recruitment ads I have seen.
Apple seems to have got both their product and employment identity down. :)


Choosing a Recruitment Communications Agency

The following is an excerpt from an article written by Ri5 for the January issue of Pharma Times, the monthly magazine for the pharmaceutical, biotechnology and healthcare industries.

The first half of the article, not included here, focused on the history of the recruitment communications industry. The following portion then goes into how the internet has effected that landscape and how a recruiter might go about selecting and engaging professional support in this area.

This should be of interest to anyone who is considering seeking the support of an agency such as Oxus and I am pleased to say that when looking at their main criteria, we tick all the boxes!

"... And then along came the Internet and, not only did the goalposts move, but the rules of the game went out of the window. As in so many other aspects of life, the Internet opens up wonderful potential for recruiters, while at the same time presenting a new set of challenges. The opportunities are threefold: the Internet offers extraordinary scope for an employer to communicate with its current workforce and potential employees ...; it allows far more detailed communication about an organisation, its culture and what it is like to work there; and it has vast capacity for candidate administration. This is not then simply a new channel for advertising vacancies but a platform on which to build and promote an organisation's image as an employer - the employer brand. It can also provide the administrative infrastructure for managing talent pools and pipelines.

Response rates and costs can be measured in real time, allowing campaigns to be fine-tuned on the run. Yet alongside all these largely positive possibilities, there are dangers lurking: anyone who has a modicum of Internet savvy will check in the chat rooms and on social networking sites to get informal views about any prospective employer's good and bad points. There is thus very little point in constructing a gold-plated employer brand if one scratch reveals rather tarnished base metal below.

The purpose of recruitment (or employment) communications is to achieve the best possible return on an organisation's investment in attracting and retaining the people it needs. Recruitment communications agencies are in business to develop and implement effective recruitment marketing strategies and employee communications, using a wide range of media expertise and creative flair to deliver such results. The specialist skills that such agencies have evolved over the last 50 years or so are now allied to the most sophisticated knowledge of digital and Internet technologies. At the very least, recruitment communications agencies deliver useful and valuable services; at best, they can help to achieve real competitive advantage.

Not all agencies offer the same services. The starting point is much as it has always been:

A recruitment communications agency will be able to write, design and produce recruitment advertisements and manage their placement in appropriate online and offline media.

They will offer expertise in the design, production and hosting of recruitment websites - both general careers sites and job-specific microsites.

They will advise on how to optimize the use of search engines, job boards and other online and offline media to drive qualified traffic to the right place.

Many will offer strategic advice on employment marketing, brand development and management, and communications strategies.

Most provide response management facilities.

Perhaps the key task for any employer wishing to appoint a recruitment communications agency is to specify precise requirements before devising a selection process to identify the best qualified.

Drawing up a long list of recruitment communications agencies that could meet the specification should be fairly straightforward. Look at the advertising agency listings and visit the agencies' own websites to get an impression of what they are like. And look for good examples of online and offline recruitment communications, and try to find out who was responsible. Or simply contact the HR team in organisations you respect and ask who they use. Once you've identified your targets, you should make contact and, if initial impressions are favourable, arrange a meeting. Some form of structured assessment may be appropriate, or you could consider a trial project or a competitive pitch between a short-list of agencies (probably inviting a maximum of three contenders), making it clear to all concerned the criteria you will be using to determine the winner. (One of the most useful exercises may be to brief all agencies on a "real" project and invite them to propose fully-costed solutions, with as little room as possible for ambiguity.)

Recruiters, not just in the UK but the world over, have at their disposal the means to communicate more effectively than ever with employees and potential employees. The price of getting it right need not be high, but the cost of getting it wrong could be huge. UK recruiters are fortunate to have at their service the world's most accomplished and talented recruitment communications experts and any effort put in to finding the right agency partner is likely to be repaid in spades."

Ri5 call themselves “the premier information and marketing platform for the recruitment communications industry” and they are without a doubt one of the best sources of information online for this industry. Check them out if you wish to read more.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Heath and Desire Paths

This is Heath, making my first blog post. I came to work at Oxus about 8 weeks ago, having no background whatsoever in anything HR, ATS or Employer Branding-related. I've lived in Beijing for a little over two years, spending most of my time teaching and learning valuable skills. (read: Spending massive amounts of time on the internet, reading books, illegally downloading music and watching pirated DVDs.)

Now I find myself the Systems Solutions Manager in charge of an Applicant Tracking System. It's been an exciting few weeks here. It's been wild going from total ignorance to being pretty well versed in the world of Talent Management Systems. Luckily, I've had good teachers. Everyone in the office has plenty of experience in the HR world, and every day I learn something new. On top of that, the internet is a fantastic resource on its own. I've spent hours on sites like, fistfuloftalent,com and, just figuring out how this world works.

Now, I realize that the majority of the people reading this blog probably have a better handle on the world of HR than I do. I'm new. I think I can, however, offer a fresh perspective.

One thing that has been particularly interesting to me is the way HR departments in China seem to lag pretty far behind those in the US/UK/Europe. In the West, it's commonplace to utilize the internet to simplify the hiring process. Business in China, though, hasn't adapted.

Pre-internet, paper resumes and applications were the only ways to figure out who your applicants were. These had to be read individually and sifted/sorted by hand. An enormously time-consuming and expensive task.

Today, this process can be automated. Applicants can apply online, resumes can be parsed and relevant information can be tagged. You don't need people reading every resume. It's easy.

Why then, is this practice not in action in the world's most populous country? There are millions of people looking for jobs in China. Companies are inundated with resumes. Yet still, applicant tracking systems are far from commonplace. It's insanity.

Look at this picture:

It's a "desire path".

You see them all over the world. You don't need to walk all the way around the sidewalk. Just walk directly where you want to go. It saves time and energy. In recruitment, it also saves money.

A Post for never saw these shots did you?

These images were taken when shooting the "farmer using computer" shot for Intel's "Create the New Normal" campaign. Mid-winter, not a great day, damn cold and no greenery. We were counting on some post-production to see us through. Still, we needed a field of vegetables so we planted one! See the end result above...then see how it was done! (slide-show)

End result was a royalty-free image for the client (their own requirement) at less than half the cost of buying a lesser quality one we'd already found in an image-bank.

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Employer Branding; more than just pretty pictures

Employer Branding is gaining popularity and awareness in China today and a number of companies are investing large sums to develop their own Employer Brand (EB). What most of us see as a result of this investment in time and money is a collection of creative visuals and catchy copywriting espousing the joys of employment at such and such a company. But is this really what employer branding is all about? Is there more to Employer Branding than just pretty pictures and catchy advertising taglines?

Written by Employer Branding professionals in China, this article will look into the process of employer branding by drawing on the experiences of Microsoft China Research and Development (CRD) during their 2007 Campus Recruitment Program. The article will illustrate the process taken, the justifications for them and the results that can come from leveraging your employer brand in the recruitment market.

“Brand Building?”

Legend has it that a major MNC recently approached HodesOxus asking how much it would cost to “build” their employer brand. The answer was simple, “That will cost you nothing; you already have one!”

The fact that every organization already has an employer brand is an unavoidable truth that is sometimes more easily recognized by replacing the word “brand” with “reputation”. Whether you like it or not, you all have a reputation as an employer, based on the variety of opinions that have been formed amongst your staff and stakeholders over the period of your existence. It is the sum of these opinions and the associated emotions, values, and feelings that constitute your “Employer Brand.” Companies may sometimes feel that these perceptions are underserved or maybe even downright incorrect, but as they represent the reality of your brand (or reputation), they need to be properly understood before any actions can be taken to manage them, address them and begin to leverage them to your own benefit.

So how should this MNC have approached the issue? They could have asked, “How much will it cost to discover my Employer Brand?” Obviously you simply cannot go and make up a bunch of stuff about your company and send it out to the public only to discover that your existing employees don’t actually agree with it. From a recruitment perspective, the employer branding messages must ring true. They must not only come across as genuine, but more importantly, be something that the organization is able to deliver on. Anyone joining an organization for a particular set of reasons will not stay long if these commitments are not delivered upon. A big part of employer branding is simply about making sure that your organization is attracting the right people, for the right reasons, aligning employee expectations with the reality of the job offering.

Assessing perceptions

And so it begins with research, which, done properly, should assess perceptions both internally and externally of the company. By offering a safe environment with an emphasis on confidentiality, small, internal focus groups of employees across all levels of the organization can offer valuable insights into the real state of affairs. To compliment these findings, the perceptions of the company as an employer also need to be assessed from the outside, ideally from the type of people you are hoping to attract – your target audience. Identifying candidates for this external research can be more challenging and if focus groups prove to be too difficult to arrange (getting 8 unrelated people in the same room at the same time can be hard), they can also be achieved through 20 - 30 minute telephone interviews with an experienced interviewer.

When compared, the two sets of data can show a picture of internal employer brand “reality” against external employer brand “perceptions”. This is the information that should be the basis for the design of a messaging strategy that addresses the strengths and weaknesses of the employer brand as it is. This creative application incorporates not only the copywriting but also the whole visual appeal of the brand including the overall theme and taglines.

A Case Study in Employer Branding creativity and implementation; The Microsoft China Research and Development (CRD) 2007 Campus Recruitment Campaign.

In early 2007, Microsoft CRD invested in both internal and external research into their “core-tech” target audiences across China and India. The findings indicated some external perceptions of Microsoft as an employer that were worrying to its recruitment team and that it wanted to address. These included that CRD was an intense and demanding working environment that was not as creative as its competitors. Some felt that projects in China lack challenges and involved more implementation than incubation of new technology development. Internally however, CRD was recognized for its excellent training and development opportunities, it’s exposure to cutting-edge technology, career development and “impact”, the extent to which an individual’s contribution can be felt both inside the organization and in the world at large.

Knowing that they had a compelling employment offering, CRD settled on a strategy of drawing on a selection of newly recruited “stars” to deliver the messages for them. This “dream-team” of core-tech superstars became CRD’s spokesmen and women, in some cases returning to their old campuses to talk to the graduating classes about life after school and life at Microsoft CRD.

Thus CRD went to campus with a very open-door approach that was summed up in the tagline “See for yourself”. Leveraging familiarity with Microsoft’s corporate slogan of “We see…”, this tagline was an invitation to “come and have a look” that at the same time displayed an almost defiant confidence and pride in their offerings as an employer. The result was a resounding success. The recruiting target for the event was exceeded by 20% without compromising on entry requirements and interview / screening systems. So successful was the campaign in fact that it won a creative excellence award at CEA 07 and went on to form the basis of the internship campaign in 2008.

Using a more youthful and urban theme of a colorful graffiti-sprayed wall, the “stars” partook in a half-day photo-shoot that formed the visual basis for a variety of communications that delivered a number of key messages to the target audiences. CRD was very aware of the amount of pertinent information that their target group had access to, so stretching the truth was never an option. At the same time, they were aware of the demand for this talent and the fact that nearly every graduate from the top schools was likely to be presented with more than one “letter of offer” from a major player in the IT sector.

From the perspective of the job-seeking graduate, the employer branding messaging should have given them an understanding of CRD as an employer that might have differed from what they “heard” elsewhere and by hearing it directly from their peers on the inside may have lent it increased credibility. The result is that when letters of offer come in, the candidates have the added security of making an informed decision about their very first career move.

Employer Branding however should also deliver more than that. Microsoft’s Campus road shows and presentations were attended by many more than those individuals who finally took up offers of employment. All the brand awareness and familiarity now imparted into these other graduates who will be joining other organizations will carry with them a perception of what it could have been like at Microsoft. This could mean that they would go on to consider Microsoft again in a few years time or even end up working with them indirectly as a client or service provider.

Off campus however and into a real labour market, not all of your target audience is actively seeking employment and the opportunity to seed in the minds of those who are already engaged in other organizations the benefits and features of employment with your organization is just as critical. Employer Branding is not something that should appear solely in the realm of recruitment advertising. It is about spreading that awareness into the offices of your competitors, thereby beginning to attract passive job seekers with its well crafted and well positioned messages.

Furthermore, having defined your offerings and laid them in a concise and consistent manner, the communication of them through a much broader variety of channels will also allow for the development of passive candidate channels. By building your employer brand into your careers site and coupling it with a web-based application system, the opportunity exists to turn any media channel, from industry publications to online communities, into viable recruitment channels. The company can begin to undertake recruitment advertising that does not hold a job title or job description but rather attracts potential candidates to your careers center by delivering carefully crafted messages. Once on your site, they can begin to understand what you stand for and what you offer to your employees.

Recruitment partners such as headhunters and even internal recruitment staff also stand to benefit from the development of an employer brand by becoming clearer on the jobs they are “selling” which results in a greater return on investment over the long term. At the end of the day, if they are selling your company as an employer, they must be fully equipped to do so with the maximum amount of honesty and integrity. There is too much to lose in getting this wrong.

Much more than just pretty pictures and copy, Employer Branding is an exercise in research, followed by a creative application that is intended to deliver a powerful and consistent message about your company that carries with it all the emotion, values and excitement that your company can inject into the lives and careers of your staff.

Footnote: HodesOxus is the partnership of Oxus Solutions Ltd ( and the Bernard Hodes Group ( ) who have come together to offer Employer Branding expertise in the China market. The designs used in the Microsoft campaign can be seen in the portfolio on

Thursday, January 8, 2009
















  三、强化培训是强身健体的最好选择 :


  四、企业文化建设,“稳定压倒一切,团结就是力量! ”



Monday, January 5, 2009


This is the Chinese language version of an article I wrote for "China Staff" (a CCH publication) back in August '08. An English language version will go up here in a few days.



“品牌建设” ?

曾有一个跨国公司找到hodesoxus咨询需要投入多少成本才能“打造”他们的雇主品牌。他们得到了一个很简单的答案,那就是 “您不用花一分钱,因为您已经有了” !

每一个企业都拥有一个属于自己的雇主品牌,而“品牌”一词更容易被“口碑”所取代 。不管您是否愿意,您的雇主口碑都在您作为雇主的基础上形成,这个口碑汇集了您的员工以及所有利益相关者的看法。这些看法和相关的情绪,价值观念和情感的汇集构成了您的“雇主品牌”。公司有时可能觉得这些看法是不全面的,甚至是完全错误的,但它们却真实的代表了您现实中的品牌(口碑)。所以在您决定宣传您的雇主品牌前,请全面了解公司内部的这些负面看法,并着手解决这些问题。

所以先前的那个跨国公司应该问的是: “应该需要多少钱来发现我的雇主品牌?” 很显然您不应该去编造一个个美丽的雇主谎言,并把它们传播给公众,但最终却发现您的员工会站出来粉碎这些谎言。从招聘的角度来看,雇主品牌的信息/承诺必须要真实。同时,更重要的是这些信息/承诺是能够兑现的。那些为特定的承诺而加入企业的员工,一旦发现这些承诺不会被兑现,很可能会选择离开。雇主品牌建设从很大程度上来说,是要确保您的公司用实实在在的承诺,吸引适合您公司的员工。更重要的是,这些员工入职后,将发现他们对公司的期望值与公司的现实相符合。



将内部和外部的两组数据进行比较,即可显示出内部目标群对该雇主品牌的“真实”评价和外部目标群体对该雇主品牌的“看法” 。清楚标明该雇主品牌的长处和短处,这为如何设计品牌营销信息的传递策略提供了基础。这种创造性的整合策略,将文案,整个品牌的视觉魅力,还有总主题和广告标语有机地融合在一起。


在2007年年初,微软CRD决定从内部和外部研究其在中国和印度的“core-tech”目标群体。调查结果显示,很多的外部目标群体对微软作为雇主有负面看法,这让微软的招聘团队有些担忧。这些看法包括: 微软CRD的工作强度大并且很苛刻,创造性也弱于竞争对手。微软在中国的项目缺乏挑战性,更多的是做技术执行而不是新技术的开发。但是微软内部员工认为:研发中心给与了员工良好的培训和发展机会,让员工接触到了尖端技术,重视员工的职业发展 ,员工的个人贡献无论在公司的内部还是在世界大舞台上都有着深远的影响。


微软在校园内采用了非常亲民的做法,他们打出新的口号: “see for yourself” ,成功利用了人们熟悉的微软公司的宣传标语“we see… ” 。 这个新口号邀请应届毕业生们来微软看一看,同时显示微软作为雇主的信心和自豪感。2007年微软的校园招聘相当成功。在没有降低员工录用标准的条件下,招聘目标比预计超出了20 %。这个成功的校园招募也赢得了CEA07创造性卓越奖并为微软2008年校园实习生活动奠定了良好的基础。

运用青春感十足和色彩斑斓的城市主题涂鸦墙, “新星们” 参加了为期半天的照片拍摄,这些人物加背景的视觉图片成为了微软传达其雇主承诺的基础,并加工成为不同的传播内容并通过不同的媒介传达给目标群体。微软明白其目标群体可以通过不同的方式获得相关的雇主信息,所以在传达其雇主承诺时不夸大,讲事实。同时,微软意识到几乎每一个顶级学校的毕业生基本上都可以拿到好几个科技界巨头的聘用书。







注: Hodesoxus 是由Oxus Solutions.(和Bernard Hodes( )组成,Hodesoxus为中国市场提供雇主品牌建立的专业服务。微软2007年校园招聘案例请参阅 “ 案例” 部分。