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More companies will be investing in their employer brand

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LinkedIn’s Pierre Berlin looks at the trends, challenges, and opportunities set to shape the recruitment industry in 2015:A strong employer brand can halve the cost per hire for a company, and reduce employee turnover by almost 30 percent. 

At the same time, 72 percent of recruiters in the UK say it has a significant impact on their ability to make high-quality hires. However, it’s only recently that recruiters are beginning to take action. Our latest Global Recruiting Trends report indicates that the number of organisations in which their employer brand is sufficiently well resourced finally rose in 2014, having declined in 2013.

2015 will see more and more businesses focus on their employer branding, with marketing and HR functions brought closer together in a wider range of organisations. Just as social media has enabled organisations to communicate with their customers in more transparent and authentic ways, so too has it become an increasingly important channel in attracting the best talent. In fact, social professional networks are now the top source of quality hires for recruitment professionals according to our latest Global Recruiting Trends report. Next year will see businesses harness social media in even more creative ways to reach the best candidates.

Among those organisations that have already embraced employer branding, we will continue to see more innovation across other areas of the recruitment process. At LinkedIn’s Talent Connect London event recently, L’Oreal shared its approach to creating an immersive experience for candidates. This includes installing ‘beacon’ technology around the offices where candidates are interviewing to drip-feed personalised information to them at the right time as they move through the process. This is one of the techniques being used to help make sure all candidates leave as ambassadors for the brand, whether they are successful or not.

The Office for National Statistics recently published data highlighting imbalances in UK talent supply and demand. Ten per cent of workers describe themselves as “underemployed” – they would happily work more hours for the same rate of pay. Meanwhile, a further one in ten are “overemployed” and would prefer to work fewer hours. In 2015, big data analytics will help the government and other public sector organisations to better identify and address economic opportunities and pressure points, as well as to better understand and influence trends in employment and talent mobility.

The digitisation and globalisation of recruitment has increased the pool of candidates available to businesses. We have also seen a huge increase in the amount of accessible candidate data, which has seen recruiters develop increasingly sophisticated technology and analytical skills to turn this into useful information for the business. In 2014 organisations began to realise the potential of their talent function to provide valuable strategic insights beyond simply the hiring and firing of talent. For example, talent functions could have an input into the best locations for an organisation to expand into, based on the availability of appropriately skilled local talent. Forrester has been predicting for some time that the CMO’s technology budget is set to match that of the CIO by 2017 – 2015 is likely to see the “Chief Talent Officer” fighting for a piece of the action too.

In 2015, the talent acquisition function will further consolidate its increasing importance within businesses, providing forward-thinking organisations with a point of differentiation and competitive advantage. This may include, for example, the use of more contextual data. Information such as a prospect’s connections with existing employees, whether they attended the same university or worked at the same company as people already at the organisation, or their social media groups, likes, and shares, can be strong indicators of their likely compatibility with the culture of an organisation. By ensuring that they only interview candidates they already know are likely to be a good personal – as well as professional -fit, recruitment professionals can reduce the time and money spent during the recruitment process.