Tell a story to attract the right candidates

Telling a story helps you connect with your audience, evoke a reaction and make your material more memorable. So could storytelling help organisations connect and engage with potential candidates?

When we say “tell a story” we mean bring to life what it’s like to work in your company. A good story will be:

  • about real employees and real scenarios;
  • relatable and relevant to candidates,
  • and an honest reflection of your organisation.

Why tell a story?

Telling a story is about attracting the right candidates; candidates who are going to fit in well with your company ethos, culture and be a valuable addition to your current team.

A well-told and honest story can convince candidates that your company is the right fit for them. It can help candidates imagine working for your organisation, achieving their goals with you.

Candidates can make a more informed decision

It can be hugely frustrating for employers when, after the CV sift and interview process, candidates aren’t quite the right fit. Although there is no fool proof way of preventing this, by providing genuine stories and content about what it’s like to work for your organisation you’ll be offering candidates the opportunity to ‘self-select’ out of the recruitment process.

By demonstrating to candidates what your work culture is like you’re giving them the chance to identify whether they will be a good fit or not. At Anne Corder Recruitment we always try to provide candidates with as much information about our clients’ company culture, to give candidates the opportunity to think about whether it is the right job for them.

The right candidates will interview much better

Content that tells a story about what it’s like working in your company is perfect pre-interview research material. The savvier candidates will use such content to understand more about the skills you value and how their character, attitude and work ethic could fit well with your company ethos.

Don’t be afraid of directing candidates to content that explains more about what it’s like to work for you. When you invite them to an interview, include a few links to content they may find useful/of interest.

Stay at the forefront of candidates’ minds

As mentioned before, stories are much more memorable – they’ll stick in the minds of candidates. This can be crucial to attracting high-calibre candidates who may not be actively seeking a new job when they come across your company. Instead, a story that depicts your organisation’s great work culture, career progression or employee relations may just be what sticks in their minds later down the line, when they do begin a search for a new job.

Ways to tell your story:

We’ve established why telling a story can be a great way to attract the right candidates. But what stories can you tell and how can you tell them? Here are a few examples that can get you started:

  1. A case study: Ask some of your most engaged employees to get involved with a case study about their career so far in your organisation. Perhaps they successfully completed a graduate scheme with you or have worked their way up the ladder and demonstrated some of your core company values along the way. Get them to tell their story in a blog post or in a short video.
  2. Share your story on social media: It’s easy to think of a story as a long-winded piece of prose but it doesn’t have to be. Use social media to tell a story in little snippets. Share photos of team activities or employee achievements. Think of how everything you share online builds into a bigger story about what it is like to work at your organisation.
  3. Tell a story during interviews: Of course, an interview is an opportunity for you to find out more about a candidate but it works both ways: candidates will use interviews to find out more about your organisation too. When they ask questions about what the work environment is like or how they will be given the opportunity to progress, try to give real examples. Tell them about a graduate who worked their way up in the organisation or tell them about your most recent employee away day or after-work activity.

Telling a story can make your workplace seem much more real to a potential candidate – give it a go in the next piece on career content you create. For more useful tips and advice on improving your recruitment strategy and employer brand have a look at our employer resources.

About the Author

Anne Corder

Anne Corder

Owner

Whilst still actively handling recruitment assignments, Anne specialises in Human Resources with many years of experience in that sector. She blogs on wider recruitment issues affecting both candidates and clients, commenting and offering tips and advice to help achieve the right outcomes.