Seeking Top Talent? Do What These Professional Services Firms Do Online
Every company’s success depends on the quality work of employees – and nowhere is this truer than in professional services. After all, in legal, accounting, finance, consulting, architectural and engineering firms, people essentially are the business. Which is why successful professional services organizations can teach a lot about how to communicate an employer brand to attract, hire and retain top talent.
Scouring the web for examples of excellence, we found six professional services firms that really get it – from strong messaging on strategically designed career sites to well-leveraged social media and alumni network engagement. No surprise, these same firms have been recognized for employer excellence, by Fortune Magazine among many others.
Innovation is a core component of Cooley’s identity, as can be seen in both their client-facing brand and their employer brand. The firm’s careers site is engaging and easy to navigate, with lots of great video featuring employees. All of these components come together to make it clear that Cooley expects collaboration, diversity, creativity and passion from its people – all of which are critical for an innovative, cutting-edge law firm. Pro bono work is meaningful, not just a business requirement. And, the path to partnership is clear, as are opportunities to connect with others through internal “affinity groups.”
Most professional services firms leverage LinkedIn in some way. But Cooley extends its social media presence, incorporating Facebook and Twitter into its digital strategy, as well. The firm’s presence on each platform features a rich balance of industry news, events, client successes, featured employees and “what it’s really like to work here” topics. The seamless connections between the firm’s overall and employer brand messaging reinforce the idea that the firm truly does prize innovative approaches from employees, for the benefit of their clients.
Finally, Cooley understands the value past employees bring to the firm and uses its online presence to engage them via their alumni network. Cooley encourages alumni to stay connected through alumni events and no-cost CLE (Continuing Legal Education) courses, leaving the door open for ongoing networking and opportunities with this valuable audience.
Deloitte – Consulting, Tax, Audit and Advisory
Deloitte is one of the world’s oldest and largest professional services organizations, recognized by many as a top employer brand. While the firm’s career website arguably could be slimmed down and organized to be easier for job seekers to follow, it does a lot of things right. Deloitte understands that visitors to their careers site aren’t a single, homogenous group – they can be experienced professionals, students or recruiters, and their career expertise could be in any of Deloitte’s key business areas. Accordingly, its careers site includes helpful information based on each audience’s needs. The site uses video effectively, too, with employees from multiple demographics and business areas sharing authentic stories of why it’s great to work at Deloitte.
We love Deloitte’s focus on career journeys that include all of life’s important moments, not just professional milestones. For instance, in the image below, you’ll see that Devon is more than just an audit and assurance professional – she’s also a mom who has trekked to Mount Everest’s base camp in Nepal. These kinds of stories show that Deloitte team members aren’t expected to check their individuality at the door each morning – an empowering message, to say the least.
Protiviti – Business Consulting
For Protiviti, employer branding messages on the careers website for this global consulting firm extends naturally from the key messaging on their solutions pages. Indeed, on almost every page, visitors can see that when you work at Protiviti:
- You will grow
- You will make an impact
- You can be your best
These ideals of development, higher purpose and empowerment are important to employees, particularly millennials looking for the next step on their career path.
Protiviti’s careers website wins with strong overall organization and flow, too. Its highly visual approach divides the firm’s key focus areas into large image blocks for easy navigation and interest. Videos authentically capture what it’s like to work there, emphasizing the firm’s appreciation of individuals who bring unique strengths and abilities to the organization. The recruiting process page reinforces this powerful message with language like “Bring your whole self to work. That’s Protiviti” and, “All we ask is that you be yourself.” Protiviti also understands the value of its alumni network with a page dedicated to upcoming alumni events, ways to stay in touch and a quick link back to the careers page.
In short, when it comes to clear, authentic, and powerful career communications, this firm nails it.
Crowe Horwath – Accounting, Consulting & Technology
Crowe Horwath LLP, a global public accounting, consulting, and technology firm, has a comprehensive careers website with distinct sections for students and for experienced professionals. The student section is particularly strong, highlighting campus events as well as opportunities to learn about internships and the firm’s hiring process. These clear expectations are critical for – and appreciated by – top candidates just entering the workforce or those advancing their careers through post-graduate studies.
That said, Crowe Horwath’s content is where the firm’s online employer branding truly shines. Through the careers blog, the recruiting team regularly highlights important events and timely news while also featuring employees and showcasing employer awards. Equally important, they leverage this great content across all social platforms, reaching their audiences anywhere they might be.
Having your employer brand messaging nailed down, and told in an authentic and clear way is vital. But continuing to tell the story again and again from different perspectives and across multiple channels is what will move the needle in achieving your goals.
We have to love a firm that affectionately refers to itself as “MoFo” (and if the acronym made you giggle, too, you’ll enjoy learning about the reason the firm uses it). We’re so impressed by Morrison Foerster’s inviting, visually appealing, minimalist careers website. Its overarching employer brand messages are clear and include targeted messaging for students, experienced lawyers and business professionals. And, as with all of our favorite careers sites, videos of associates sharing their own stories reinforce MoFo’s employer brand identity, in which passion makes all the difference.
Perhaps most significantly, MoFo’s careers site makes it easy to view current openings and apply. So many employers bury this call to action when they really need to make it as prominent and persistent as possible. The Apply page clearly explains what job seekers can expect in their interview – and they can schedule own interviews with people in key specialty areas, female lawyers, lawyers of color, etc. This clearly shows candidates that a mutual commitment to cultural fit is important here.
From the moment visitors arrive at Baker Tilly’s careers site, they can see and hear employees speaking about the firm, their experiences, development opportunities, work-life balance and the firm’s growth. From there, they can quickly navigate to additional videos focused on how the firm helps employees grow their expertise in the areas that interest them most.
Baker Tilly’s careers site also wins in the area of candidate engagement. Job seekers don’t have to apply for specific positions to connect as “Talent Insiders.” This makes potential candidates feel like they have an inside edge on firm opportunities, with alerts for new job openings, and information about future events and industry news. These last two features go beyond those of a typical Talent Management System (TMS), enabling Baker Tilly to engage with people who may be interested in joining the firm and keep the conversation going, reinforcing its attractiveness as an employer.
Baker Tilly does a great job extending its employer brand messaging seamlessly across social media platforms, namely Facebook and LinkedIn. A dedicated Facebook page for careers offers potential employees opportunities for direct engagement, as well as an easy place to find newly announced job openings. Likewise, Baker Tilly uses its LinkedIn presence to express general thought leadership and reinforce what makes the firm unique. This approach bolsters Baker Tilly’s identity as a place that values individuals and encourages employees to grow.
Did you notice some commonalities among these successful employer brands? All of them use clear, consistent messaging across their digital platforms. All of their employer brand components feel like they belong with their overall, client-facing brands. And let’s not forget about video, which isn’t a fleeting trend or something “nice to have.” It’s an essential component of any authentic, employer brand storytelling. After all, unless your employees are professional actors, it’s hard to fake passion, enthusiasm and connection.
Follow the lead of these firms – who clearly get what it means to establish a successful employer brand online – and you’ll be well on your way to attracting, hiring, retaining and engaging the right talent to help you take your business forward.
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