SmartRecruiters Blog

Getting to 99%: A Joy for Candidates, Employees and Customers at Indigo

As RecruitingDaily executive editor Matt Charney said during his presentation at our Hiring Success 17 conference last month, “employer branding” comes off as just a cliché buzzword. True enough if all it amounts to is including a set of cheesy photos and trite slogans on your career site.

But paying close attention to how you present your organization is critical if you expect to fill thousands of positions each year.

One SmartRecruiters client, Indigo — Canada’s largest book, gift, and specialty retailer — takes extraordinary pride in bringing joy to its customers, and just as importantly, its employees. A case study we published noted that 99 percent of Indigo employees would refer others for jobs there.

I don’t know what Matt would say, but 99 percent? That’s one powerful brand!

Whether you call it great employer branding or not, a reputation like that creates joy all around — for Indigo’s customers, their recruiters, and for all of us at SmartRecruiters. We see this joy quite often as organizations discover how a modern talent acquisition suite like ours makes a big difference in attracting better talent and filling roles more quickly.

Headquartered in Toronto, Indigo employs more than 6,000 people, makes more than 4,000 hires per year, and operates under a decentralized hiring model.

In our case study, Indigo’s Director of Talent Acquisition and Performance Management Sarah Wilson explains that the company’s brand promise to “add a little joy to our customers’ lives” may seem simple, but that “we must make sure our entire team embodies that spirit.”

As it turns out, it’s not as simple as it seems unless you’re using the right suite of tools.

Decentralized hiring: Flexibility and agility a must.

Ms. Wilson points out that the older legacy applicant tracking system Indigo had been using made it difficult to integrate other tools and technologies the company adopted and that integration would have been far too costly.

Because we offer easy integrations with virtually any tool, dozens of pre-configured integrations already built into the platform, and an interface far more intuitive than older legacy systems, Indigo store managers across Canada could quickly get up to speed — essential in a decentralized organization. Ms. Wilson says that Indigo can “now be a lot more flexible and agile than previously.”

Meeting hiring goals weeks ahead of schedule

With a more intuitive application experience and transparency during the interviewing and evaluation process, word has spread. Now more than half of employees hired are either referrals from other employees or apply directly from Indigo’s site — substantially reducing costs and making it easier to fill jobs a lot more quickly.

In fact, for the 2016 holiday season, the company met its hiring goals two weeks ahead of schedule.

“After we switched to SmartRecruiters, we definitely see that candidates are far more engaged,” Ms. Wilson says — noting that more than 44 percent of potential candidates who see a posted job click to apply and 82 percent of those who click complete an application.

“Our brand is an exceptional asset, both on a customer level and as an employer,” she explains, “SmartRecruiters has made it really easy for us to showcase that brand.”

Sure, the term “employer brand” may be a trite cliché, but that’s probably because so many companies only pay lip service to the concept. But when 99% of employees would refer others for jobs in your company, you don’t care what it’s called. You take a lot of joy in results like that.

Oh, and congratulations to Sarah Wilson and the entire Indigo hiring team for winning the “Hiring Team of Year” award at Hiring Success 17 last month!

Download the full Indigo case study here.


SmartRecruiters' Talent Acquisition Suite has everything you need to attract, select, and hire the best talent.