It’s a tech job candidate’s market right now. Tech companies want workers — all at the same time. So, how can startups and scale-ups attract top talent? They’ll need more than just a job posting and the promise of a foosball table to bring in the best.
Working for a PR agency for tech companies, I know how a great story can position those growing companies as a cool company to work for.
For instance, wouldn’t it be nice to land a job at the company that just got a giant round of funding? How about the company that’s delivered the next big thing, that’s about to dominate their market? Candidates for tech jobs will use those news stories as signals that they’re a great company to work for.
Here are a few headline ideas to use in your PR strategy to boost your recruitment marketing, and position you as a cool company to work for:
Use business growth to attract employees
“[COMPANY NAME] raised [$ NUMBER] in a new funding round, and is hiring [NUMBER] new employees in massive growth spurt”
For example: Facebook raised $3m in a new funding round, and is hiring 100 new employees in massive growth spurt
Nothing says growth and progress like a big dollar sign. Crass, but true. But a funding round isn’t the only way to demonstrate growth.
Perhaps you’re hiring in the tens or opening new headquarters. Did you reach a crazy milestone in your revenue or number of employees? All of these storylines point to a company that is successful — which is exactly the kind of company people are looking for.
Be sure to use language that demonstrates movement and innovation. After a year of calm, employees are focusing on progress.
Put the spotlight on your c-suite members’ success
“[FOUNDER] starts [COMPANY NAME] to do [MISSION], after a successful exit at [PREVIOUS VENTURE]”
For example: Ryan Holmes starts Hootsuite to manage social media, after a successful exit at Invoke Media
Potential candidates love an industry leader with a past record of success more.
If your organization has recognizable c-suite members with past stories of success or big exits, put them in the spotlight.
Alex Clark made the news when his company, Bit Stew Systems, was acquired by General Electric. A few years later as Clark launched his startup, it became a key part of the PR strategy.
Headlines like ‘Alex Clark’s first company sold for $200 million. Can messaging app Quantum Pigeon serve as his encore?’ used previous success as the hook to bring in interested parties to the new venture — whether that be investors, general readers, or more importantly, prospective employees.
This story is best to use when launching a company, or when the c-suite member in question joins the team. But, 2 years down the line, you can adjust this.
Highlight lessons learned from the member in question. Achievements made at the new company that rival the old one. Or have them announce big plans for the future that tie in with their past.
Brag about the unique benefits your company offers
“[COMPANY NAME] offers employees [BENEFIT]”
For example: American Express offers employees 5 months parental leave
In 2007 (that’s how memorable this announcement was), Google started encouraging engineers to spend 20 percent of their time on personal endeavors or interests. Years later, it still sticks out as an incredibly unique benefit.
What benefits do you offer that are worth bragging about? Or, if you’re missing it, what can you start offering? Act on the story that you want to write.
Bear in mind, unlike Google, the story doesn’t have to go on for years and years. Hootsuite and Bumble recently made the news after they announced a week off for all employees this summer. A small gesture that goes a long way — for employees and media.
American Express announced 5 months of paid parental leave (the US doesn’t have mandated parental leave). While the benefit itself only affects specific employees, the story establishes them as a caring and progressive employer.
Highlight any awards you win — and the success that led to it
“[COMPANY NAME] wins prestigious [AWARD NAME] after [SUCCESS THAT WON THE AWARD]”
For example: Tech Talent Canada wins prestigious Tech Reporting of the Year Award after supporting hiring companies in Canada
And the award for best headline goes to…you! Aside from a funding round, winning an award is one of the easiest ways to get a media hit. You can more easily hire top talent that wants to join a company flush with cash.
The key here is to focus on the right kind of media. Won a national award? Go for national media, but lean towards the industry niche. Won a local or regional award? Aim smaller. Larger media outlets tend to scan smaller channels for stories, so you may be able to get syndication through that.
If none of these headlines fit your company, it’s worth comparing your company to competitors and pinpointing the differences. What do you do that’s so unique that employees should pick you?
Shani Kotecha is an Account Executive at the tech-focused PR agency, Mind Meld PR.