I was immediately impressed when I saw @HarrodsCareers responding personally to hundreds of employment related tweets. This Twitter handle wasn’t simply a feed of automated job postings. There was person behind @HarrodsCareers, a person putting candidates first and boosting the already amazing brand that is Harrods. I had the pleasure of chatting with Nicole McLennan, the Social Media Resourcing Coordinator and Jenny Parry, Head of Resourcing at Harrods, and this is what they had to say about their social media recruiting strategy.
How did Harrods make the decision to use Social Media in their recruiting strategy, and why?
After the success that Harrods has had on Facebook and Twitter combined with the retail industry move towards social recruiting, we saw an opportunity to give our company a voice and reach out to potential candidates; social media would give us the platform to build relationships with people, share stories, photos, interesting information about our company all the while providing friendly advice and support. We started small with a Twitter account and a Harrods careers page on LinkedIn, crafting an ideal balance to get the backing from across the business, with the aim of attracting talented candidates that are passionate about Harrods. We wanted to portray Harrods as a place of work with as much pride as we have for the store, to allow people to experience Harrods as an employer in way that was far reaching beyond our careers website.
How has Harrods benefitted from this? What has this done in terms of amplifying and creating an employer brand?
Being on social media has opened up a useful avenue for us to communicate with prospective candidates, as well as past and present Harrods employees. It’s been an arduous process adopting social media into the overall recruiting strategy, but a year on we are seeing the benefits on multiple levels. We are better able to communicate our company and employer values as well as improve our recruiting process by taking on board feedback and being connected to candidates through a real-time platform like Twitter.
Before we launched on social media, a lot of effort went into re-branding our employer brand and Twitter and LinkedIn have provided a space in which we can truly showcase all the amazing benefits and career development that Harrods has to offer. Now more than ever, it is essential to cement your presence alongside competitors, and what better way to do it than through such dynamic mediums? It’s important to be innovative and explore communication technologies because it allows you to look at your offering from a generational perspective which helps our progress.
What is Harrods’ “Hiring Philosophy?”
On one hand, our hiring philosophy at Harrods is striving to provide a service-driven process in which we highly value candidates’ feedback to make the recruitment journey as friendly and as positive as possible, regardless of the final outcome. On the other hand, we focus on behavioral skills rather than just weighing up technical skills. The right attitude is highly valued, combined with different kinds of skill sets and experience.
What does it mean to be a Harrods employee?
Being a Harrods employee means different things to different people, but at its core it means going above and beyond in everything you do. Our motto is “anything is possible” and through cultivating a culture of excellence we have a strong company ethos of exceeding expectations. Working here can seem intimidating, but we believe that the development of employees is just as important as, if not essential, for the development of the business as a whole. We wouldn’t be able to achieve high standards without investing our people. Being a Harrods employee means passion, opportunity and growth.
Harrods’ move towards recruiting over social media demonstrates the rise of social recruiting. If we can learn anything from Harrods, Nicole and Jenny it’s that big brands need to be dynamic and responsive if they expect to get the best candidates. By responding to each interaction Harrods shows they care about their people from the very start.
Jenny Parry (@JennyParry79) is the head of resourcing at Harrods.
SmartRecruiters is the Hiring Platform.