Encouraging Engagement in an Increasingly Unengaged Business

146924435A couple of months ago it occurred to me that we needed a change of perspective at M Force Staffing. We’re growing. We’re successful. And because of that we run the risk of losing touch with the most important part of our business: our people. The more you grow, the harder it is to deliver that personal touch that makes many people prefer small business.

In the digital age of recruiting, we’ve got more tools than ever to connect with our customers. But with auto-tweets, mass emails and cookie cutter content generation, these tools run the real risk of having the opposite effect: disengagement. Why actually talk to someone and build a relationship when you can just “poke” them on Facebook?

To counter this perception, we came up with something called our “Make a Difference” campaign. We began with four key ideas: Make it Simple, Make it Easy, Make it Personal and Make a Difference. Our team then built a comprehensive internal and external campaign around these four ideas:

Make it Simple. We’re here to grow business and help people find jobs. And yes, sometimes that involves paperwork, contracts and other legal documents. What it doesn’t mean is that we’ve got the right to overcomplicate the process. Our goal is to be clear about what we’re doing and make things as simple as possible for our clients, customers and job seekers.

Make it Easy. There’s an important difference here. What’s simple is not always easy. There are some processes or jobs that are extremely complicated. We think it’s our job to strip away all of the unnecessary headaches out of these complex processes, and just make them easier!

Make it Personal. This is a business of phone calls and emails. That can be very impersonal for many people. Many job seekers, for example, will apply for careers online and never hear back from anyone. That’s no way to do business. Our goal is to approach everything through the lens of providing a personal touch.

Make a Difference.  This is the end goal. The three previous ideas are all means to this end. We want to make a difference in every phone call, every email and every placement we make. This includes how we interact with each other.

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The internal rollout focused on “Difference Dollars.” We printed off some Monopoly-inspired play money with our logo on it and gave everyone in the company an allowance of dollars each month. We then challenged everyone to give out those dollars when they saw a coworker go above and beyond to portray one of our four goals. Finally, we tied the difference dollars to actual rewards, including time off, gift cards and charitable donations.

The external campaign rollout included extensive marketing to our candidates and clients. We send out emails, posted updates explaining the ideas on our website and social media pages, and themed our monthly newsletter releases around all for our themes. We even delivered Thanksgiving pies to our top clients with the words “Easy as Pie” attached.

But what have the results looked like? The program is still in its infancy, but early indications show that we’re seeing positive increases in contacts and interactions with candidates who have applied for jobs online. We hope that this trend will continue, resulting in happier candidates, happier clients and more jobs!

MORE: Apathy: The performance culture’s greatest threat

Andy Moss

Andy Moss
Andy Moss is vice president of M Force.

Andy Moss

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