Employee Spotlights vs. Testimonials vs. Employee Stories — How They’re Different & Why You Should Care
If you work in recruitment marketing or talent acquisition you know that the importance of employer branding in 2021 cannot be understated. Some statistics suggest that 50% of employees will be open to new jobs after the pandemic.
To be an employer of choice you will need more authentic employee-inspired content to show that your culture can thrive even in a remote work world. If company values are more than words on a wall, now is the time to show it.
We have researched more than 2,000 employers looking for best practices in promoting a positive, inclusive, and values-driven workplace. High-end videos, life@ Instagram pages, employee blogs, or a story-rich career page, we’ve seen it all.
Based on our research, companies who promote their values in a believable way and spotlight employee success on a regular basis benefit from Glassdoor and Indeed Culture reviews that average 4.02 — compared to 3.4 for those who do not.
According to LinkedIn’s research, a strong employer brand reduces turnover by 28% and cost per hire by 50%. In addition, 75% of job seekers consider an employer’s brand before even applying for a job (ModernHire).
The time to use more employee generated content to attract talent is now. It’s trusted, relatable (if done correctly), and in a never ending supply (assuming you’re focused on delivering a great employee experience). The benefits are big.
Spotlights vs. Testimonials vs. Stories
We have talked to a lot of companies, candidates and prospects to get their take on the move to more employee-focused content. Who is reading them? What do they accomplish?
Employee spotlights, employee testimonials, and employee stories each bring added value to an organization. Yet although they may have similar goals, they can be different in intent and outcome.
Below we highlight content types and the benefits of each.
DM us on Instagram @hellogoodseeker if you’d like a version of the sheet. We turned it into a storytelling maturity assessment tool. It’s ideal for finding new opportunities and gaps in recruitment marketing and employer branding content plans.
Our Bias for Employee Stories
#1 Reason - We built a solution for collecting, centralizing and curating employee stories for engagement, recruiting and marketing. All we think about is helping companies ready to dive in.
Employee Stories are a powerful compliment to your testimonial and spotlight efforts. They are the most valuable type of employee content and serve as a trusted window into an organization’s culture for candidates.
In fact, candidates trust the company’s employees 3x more than the company to provide credible information on what it’s like to work there (LinkedIn). So, if you are actively posting spotlights and testimonials — kudos! Don't overlook the power of employee stories.
Employee Spotlight: Freeman Webb Company, Nashville TN
We love how in this spotlight fun facts are shared, Dee’s picture is front and center, and the company expresses appreciation for her hard work.
Employee Testimonials: Credence Management Solutions, Inc., Vienna VA
We love how in Marisa’s testimonial she provides insights into what it’s like to work at Credence. This is a great testimonial for job candidates interested in hearing from an employee’s experience.
Employee Stories: Bozzuto Group, Greenbelt MD
This is a great story highlighting Darren’s impact at Bozzuto. The layout of the page entitled, “Employee Perspectives’’ and the questions asked demonstrate Bozzuto’s dedication to employees. Reading these stories provides a window into what it’s like to work there.
The Bottom line
Employee-focused content is a must for any employer branding and recruitment marketing content strategy. Taking it to the next level with more employee-generated content is a big opportunity for values-driven brands.
Here’s why you should consider all three in 2021.
Employee Testimonials are required. They are an easy way to emphasize your EVP and corporate values. Just make sure you put real names with faces. In our current review economy, nothing says “don’t trust what we say,” like stock employee images and fake names. We've talked to job seekers who actually look for people on LinkedIn to see if people on the website are real. These days testimonials on your site are expected. The advantage only comes when you have something and competitors do not.
Employee Spotlights are fun. Spotlights are a great way to show employee authenticity and that leadership cares about employees' whole self. We have found that the primary audience for Spotlights is remote coworkers, but candidates are influenced by them if specific to someone they will work with if they join. Although they are harder to sustain and require more effort they should be a key part of your content and employer branding strategy. Advice based on feedback from employees at one company with a Spotlight program, "I wish they would pick people from across the organization and different staff levels. Feels like the same people all the time."
Employee-generated Stories are powerful. Stories are multi-purpose. They can promote a positive employee experience, attract talent and customers, and serve as a learning tools at the same time.
We're talking about content that tells the story of work being done. What's happening when everyone is "heads down" should be the inspiration for employee stories. Showing big and small successes, progress, lessons-learned, and values at work reveal the day-to-day experience ... and that's exactly what candidates and prospects are looking for. They want more trusted examples of "business as usual."
How GoodSeeker can help you?
1. We offer a SaaS product that is a simple way to collect employee stories that support your values, brand and talent goals. Think of it as a treasure hunt for employee success. Sign up at www.goodseeker.com
2. We've gathered data on over 2000 companies related to their efforts to promote employees as part of their brand. We are happy to provide a free comparison of your presence compared to others, along with free recommendations. DM us on instagram or twitter @hellogoodseeker. You can also send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.