The answers to these questions are obviously followed by a) company name (and if it’s not a popular/well-known brand) b) the type of company c) your role. If the answer to the second or third question is “they’re a recruitment firm” or “I’m in recruitment”, then the scrunched-up-nose reaction of your inquisitor will tell you all you need to know about the perception of the industry in the majority of the wider public.
So why do people continue to work in recruitment (firms or in-house departments)? Especially in HR where you are fighting to build an employee brand which is under more and more instant scrutiny thanks to the world of social media or in marketing where you are trying to differentiate your business in the face of competitors with the similar business approaches?
Having now accepted a new role as a Marketing Manager in a recruitment firm (keep an eye on my Linkedin profile in the next couple of days to see who!), I can tell you my reasons.
It’s the challenge of change. It’s the challenge of making people (both internal stakeholders and external audiences) think differently about recruiting and job seeking; the challenge of pushing boundaries; the challenge of becoming early adopters of new techniques and processes; the challenge of being the best.
The firm I’m joining is a (relatively) new recruitment firm but has bold plans for the future and I’m excited by the challenges that it presents to me. I’ve been entrusted with growing the brand and introducing new ideas to improve the recruitment process, but I will be working closely with all areas of the business to realise the company’s objectives. Marketing (and recruitment) touches all areas of business and the chance to influence these areas excites me.
My past lives means, in addition to marketing, I keep a close on eye on the world of recruitment and I do think there are exciting times ahead for those who want to embrace it. BraveNewTalent’s Dave Martin was in San Francisco frantically tweeting about the importance of mobile marketing in the recruitment world and it does feel like a sea of change happening, and those who can harness, understand and implement new ideas will have a real head-start on competitors.
I also caught up with the Dylan thought leadership event with ‘Marketoonist’ Tom Fishburne who spoke on the topic of “Why the HR Director is the new Marketing Director”. Now, whilst this initially horrified me (trying to do me out of profession!), the crux was important – I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again: working together to build brands of companies and industries is the key to overall success.
I don’t want negative reactions saying that I work in recruitment and nor should anybody working in the industry so building relationships with our audience and affecting change should be something everybody is focused on.