by Brian Lee, Revelation PR, Advertising & Social Media
Keeping this idea in mind, I recommend using marketing strategies and tactics in your recruitment efforts. Here are a few tips on how to get started.
Segment Your Prospective Employees
As you market differently to business travelers, leisure travelers and groups, you also need to tailor your marketing for different types of employees. For example, candidates for your Director of Operations, which is a more senior-level position requiring at least 10 years of experience, will come from a different pool of candidates for your Night Auditor position, which could be for someone fresh out of high school or college.
Related to this point is the differences in age groups. According to research by Paychex and Gallup, each generation generally finds different things important. Gen X (1965–1980), for example, wants work-life balance, probably because they have children in the household. Meanwhile, Gen Z (1998–2012) cares about working for companies that behave ethically (think corporate social responsibility). I’ll explain the relevancy of this point in a bit.
Develop Strategies and Tactics
For the record, the next step is developing measurable objectives for each employee segment, but I want to skip ahead to strategies and tactics. In traditional marketing, we avoid doing a one-size-fits-all approach whenever possible, making sure each strategy and tactic are specific to an audience segment. This idea applies to recruitment as well.
For instance, a strategy of “conduct in-person recruitment” with an associated tactic of “host a job fair at local community center” makes sense for housekeepers, banquet servers, cooks, etc., but not necessarily for a Director of Guest Experience. A strategy for that position could be “use direct outreach” with an associated tactic of “use LinkedIn to identify and contact candidates.”
In other words, stop using one generic ad or one catch-all approach to fill all your open positions. Chances are, it’ll be irrelevant to some or most of your prospects.
Use Appropriate Messages
Now let’s figure out what to say to your target audiences. Generally, properties promote their competitive advantages to their guests through location (e.g., near the airport), comfort (e.g., new beds) and value (e.g., complimentary breakfast). We can do the same with prospective employees.
As one example, let’s look at the category of value. What is something that you provide to current employees that they would consider valuable? Perhaps it’s mentoring, skills training and tuition reimbursement? These elements are what we call features, but in marketing, we need to focus on benefits.
To do this, take those features to a higher level. Mentoring, skills training and tuition reimbursement could be classified under the benefit of professional development. That’s something that Millennials care about. In your messages to this audience segment, you would say something along the lines of, “We help you grow professionally” (that’s the benefit of working at your property). The proof would be the mentoring, skills training and tuition reimbursement you provide.
To wrap up, segment your prospective employees, develop strategies and corresponding tactics suitable for each segment and use benefits-based messaging when communicating to these segments
About the Author:
Revelation PR, Advertising & Social Media is a valued Associate Member of WHLA. Brian Lee, APR, the President of Revelation PR, Advertising & Social Media, serves on the WHLA Board of Directors.