Sargento Affirms Family-Centric Culture

Employer Branding | Integrated Marketing | Manufacturing

Here was the situation

After Sargento Foods completed a major corporate strategy and business transformation initiative in 2017, the cheese company was ready to take on its next challenge: employer branding and talent acquisition. While the company was already a desirable employer of Real Cheese People®, well-known in its home state of Wisconsin, leaders recognized the need to attract talent from outside the state. Marketing Director Christopher McCarthy had just completed an inhouse leadership development program during which he and his team mates presented a case study on Sargento’s opportunity to better define and position its employer brand. Around the same time, the company’s Human Resources team was exploring ways to improve recruitment marketing. Both teams recognized an opportunity to make a difference for the company together, and they turned to Relish Marketing to help them do it.

Together we did this

Relish Marketing brought its Brandfluence™ process to Sargento’s headquarters in Plymouth, Wisconsin, to explore the organization’s identity as an employer. The process included research into the company’s internal communications, employee engagement, candidate experiences and recruitment processes. We assessed competitor employer brands, as well as the employer brands of businesses in other industries with circumstances similar to Sargento’s. In addition, we conducted in-depth interviews with company leaders, new hires and long-term employees and completed quantitative research with Sargento employees and prospective talent in five high-need functional areas.

Our research underscored the company’s longstanding identity as a place of family-oriented leadership, values and corporate culture, while also revealing opportunities to strengthen diversity. This commitment to family became the cornerstone of the company’s employer brand, “Your Passion. Our Culture.”

Oh, so much better

The hallmark of the engagement was Relish’s commitment to a fusion of strategy and creative, as well as to building strong relationships with clients. Relish Marketing’s founder and President, Pam Willoughby, affirms, “We do our best work when we have a trusted, collaborative, partner-centric relationship with our clients. That gives us the freedom to try original, unusual ideas that represent our client’s identity strategically, authentically and creatively.”

McCarthy agrees, “Relish started by seeking to understand who we are, what we needed and where we were trying to go, integrating strategy and creative simultaneously and seamlessly.” He adds that this approach led to the development of “employer brand messaging, graphics and guidelines that really felt like us – only updated and taken in a contemporary, relevant direction.”

Sargento completed the launch of its new employer brand both to employees and talent candidates in the first half of 2020 with its new careers site.