In an isolated part of New York, where winter snow is measured in yards and one out of every three citizens is running for president, you will find the Cornell Center for Advanced Human Resource Studies and the publishing headquarters of HR Spectrum.
I was re-reading an issue from September, 2006 (yes, that is how geeky I can get) and came across an article on employer brand equity and product awareness. The article featured a research study conducted by Christopher J. Collins of the School of Industrial and Labor Relations. Specifically, the project was entitled ‘The Interactive Effects of Recruitment Practices and Product Awareness on Job Seekers’ Employer Knowledge and Application Behaviors.’
What the good professor found was that job seekers were more aware of and more attracted to companies that had more visible products or services. Just as important, students applied to these companies at a higher rate than they did to companies that did not have recognizable products or services.
Let the wailing and gnashing of teeth begin at B2Bs throughout the nation. Actually, make that 90% of companies regardless of whether they’re classified as B2B or B2C.
The key adjective used in highlighting the findings was “recognizable.” As in recognizable by the market, not by the company that makes it. So even though you might know that your organization is the leading provider of (fill in obscure niche product or service here), it doesn’t mean you’re going to get a recruiting boost from that.
The best way forward? Regardless of the self-perceived strength of your product or service brand, assume that employer brand awareness will enhance your marketplace profile.