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What’s your business story?

  28th January 2019       Hannah Hashtroudi (nee Darby)
 Client, Employment, Recruitment

Hiring staff is now a two-way street where the power is no longer solely in the hands of the employer. Candidates are putting more onus on whether they can see themselves working – and enjoying working – for a company in the long-term before making the leap from their current role.

In addition to assessing the salary and benefits on offer, more and more job seekers are turning to employee reviews and brand reputation. Sites like Glassdoor are increasing in popularity and if you’re not effectively getting a sense of your company culture across in your job adverts, then application numbers could be poor in the first place.

With National Storytelling Week currently taking place all over the UK, we thought now would be a great time to encourage employers to think about your own business story and how you can use it to attract a loyal and motivated team.

It’s been proven that those who are happy in their jobs are more productive and stay longer in their roles. A survey by Deloitte, an employer who openly lists top 10 reasons to join the firm on their career site, also revealed recently that 88%  of employees believe a distinct workplace culture if important to business success.

By providing job applicants with an honest picture of how your company operates, your values and culture right from the outset, you can improve both your recruitment and retention rates.

Start at the beginning

Whether your business is a global multinational or one-office start-up, it’s always good for prospective employees to know how you started and the stage your business is at now. There are just as many candidates excited by the opportunity to be part of a growing company as those who are more suited to a more established business.

Sell your service or product as you would to a customer

In far too many job adverts, the service, product or even industry is omitted, leaving job seekers confused about whether they have the relevant subject matter experience for such a job. In some instances, this is down to the company being seemingly boring and unexciting. But the fact is, you have a successful business and people pay for your product or service, so sell to the candidate what’s so great about what you do and how they’ll play a role.

Talk about the workspace

Paint a picture of the working environment and what candidates can expect from your facilities. Is it open-plan and colourful, or sectioned offices with muted colours? Are there meeting rooms and breakout areas or communal and outside spaces? Is the dress code formal or relaxed? And where is your premises – on a trading estate, town centre or in secluded countryside for example?

If the role is not based in one location, talk about the variety on offer of being ‘on the road’ or able to work from several sites.

Different businesses call for different workspaces, and it’s important to be transparent. Don’t say you offer modern workspaces and dress-down Fridays if that’s not what your company offers. Some workspaces need to remain corporate and employees suited and booted at all times and that’s OK. The likelihood is that your workspace will be tailored to the type of work you do, and that will be expected.

Don’t avoid the ‘day job’

In company descriptions, the nuts and bolts of the job itself can be easily forgotten, but they are just as important as the ‘fluffy’ stuff.

Explain what is expected in terms of working hours and telecommuting, the tasks they will be responsible for, what important targets and deadlines must be met and how they are expected to work – alone with complete autonomy, as part of a team, reporting directly to a line manager or a combination of all?

If it can be a fast-paced and stressful environment at times, say so. But couple this with the rewards they get as a result – bonus, extra holiday, job satisfaction and career progression.

Candidates will also want to know how they are going to be managed and if there are professional development opportunities.

Describe the ‘extra’ good stuff

Tell candidates what benefits you offer and the initiatives you encourage. This could range from the more standard pension, healthcare and cycle to work schemes to free breakfasts, subsidised social events and charity work.

Be specific and give examples of what you’ve done in your company in the past and the perks you provide and why – what do you believe in? Working hard and playing hard?

Be true to who you are

Whatever your business story, be open and transparent. Few legal secretaries will expect to turn up in trainers and a t-shirt and even fewer back-end web developers will be used to working within the strict hours of 9am to 5pm.

However, getting your company culture and business story across at the earliest opportunity will ensure your roles are being applied for by the most motivated candidates.

If you need support telling your business story to candidates, our recruitment team would be happy to help!

Hannah Hashtroudi (nee Darby)

Principal Recruitment Consultant

Hannah is a specialist in the Office & Commercial sector. Dedicated, hardworking and motivated, Hannah thrives on sourcing and placing the best talent from SME’s through to large blue chip companies across the region and in London. Hannah has grown an enviable reputation for sourcing high level senior appointments together …


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