Govcon employee sharing job opportunity with colleague

Nine out of 10 employers say employee referrals provide the highest return on investment for talent recruitment. Do you have the right govcon marketing approach to make your referral programs successful?

If you’re a government contractor trying to recruit top talent, you know it’s a challenging, never-ending task. Fortunately, one of your most potent govcon marketing assets is right under your nose: your employees.

Research clearly demonstrates that candidates sourced through employee referrals are:

  • Four times more likely to be offered a job than applicants who apply online.
  • Almost twice as likely to stay longer than 4 years.
  • Hired 13+ days faster on average.
  • $1,000 less costly to hire.
  • Better cultural fits (cited by 70% of businesses).

In fact, some studies show 88 percent of employers rate employee referral programs as their best source for new applicants. It’s clearly good business to attract exceptional new candidates by empowering your existing workers to advocate for your company.

Doing so, however, requires a comprehensive digital marketing approach that marries your government contractor website content and social media channels with specific marketing applications and internal HR policies. Read this blog post to discover 6 govcon marketing best practices for hiring top talent with the help of your existing employee base.

Make It Easy for Employees to Share Open Jobs

Your employees are often your best advocates. By making it easy for them to share job openings with their industry colleagues, former co-workers, and friends, you’re tapping into a valuable source of potential candidates.

In the tight-knit community of government contracting, endorsements from your employees will go a long way. Even if they have great networks and positive things to say, however, your staff will need your help to get the word out. You can make it easier for them by:

  • Establishing an internal communications program that notifies your workers of current or upcoming openings; they often aren’t aware of open positions and thus can’t promote them.
  • Providing links to job postings via email or accessible company portals for easy forwarding.
  • Encouraging them to announce openings on their personal social media profiles and rewarding them for doing so.
  • Distributing ready-to-share posts with relevant hashtags, graphics, and links.

Promote Openings on Your Company’s Social Media Channels

LinkedIn offers a targeted audience for job openings. It’s where many people start when they are looking for a new job, so in many ways it’s a receptive audience. That’s why recruiters love it so much.

By sharing your job openings on LinkedIn, you can reach a large pool of qualified candidates who are actively looking for jobs. Posting openings on your corporate account also makes it easier for employees to like, forward, and share with their networks to extend your reach.

In addition to LinkedIn, encourage employees to share job openings on other social media platforms, such as Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram. These platforms can be used to reach a wider audience and generate interest in your company.

Utilize Social Media Amplification Tools

Social media amplification platforms make it easy to distribute information, track activity, and reward your employees. Applications like Hootsuite, GaggleAmp, SocialHP, and Sprout Social enable your employees to share job postings (along with other content that reinforces your employer brand) automatically or with one or two clicks. This simplifies the process for employees and exponentially spreads your message.

In addition, tracking shares and click-throughs in one dedicated platform lets you monitor the reach and effectiveness of your job postings. This helps you deploy your time and efforts in the most efficient way.

Gamification can be a powerful motivator as well. Digital amplification tools help you identify which employees are most effective at promoting your company and its job openings. You can reward these employees with prizes or other incentives to encourage them to continue sharing job postings. Consider launching friendly internal competitions to motivate your staff to ramp up their outreach efforts.

Top Talent Acquisition for Government Contractors - Checklist

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Incentivize Employees to Promote to Their Networks

In Deltek’s 2022 Clarity Government Contracting Industry Report, an annual survey of government contractors, nearly half of all respondents identified the same initiative as a top priority: increasing incentives for referrals from existing employees.

Referral bonuses encourage employees to promote and refer acquaintances. Almost 7 in 10 companies offer employee referral bonuses ranging from $1,000 to $5,000. Offering cash or other incentives for successful referrals taps into employees’ networks, increasing the likelihood of suitable candidates who typically perform better.

Rewards don’t have to be expensive to be effective. Extra time off, trips, gift cards, or internal recognition programs can motivate employees without breaking the bank. And don’t forget that not all incentives are financial in nature. Nearly a third of workers are motivated by helping their friends find employment.

Feature Employees on Your Government Contractor Website

Showcasing your current employees on your website’s career section is a great way to promote the talent and culture of your organization. Get their permission to use their faces, voices, and words when telling your stories. Video testimonials, employee profiles, career advancement stories, and internal awards are all great ways to show potential candidates what it’s like to work for you.

Featured employees are more likely to share their stories with their friends and colleagues (for self-promotion and pride). This helps create an authentic connection between potential candidates and the team they could be joining. Additionally, it gives prospective candidates more insight into the organization’s culture and the people who work there.

Use your social media channels and website to announce when someone is promoted to a new role. This humanizes the process and puts a face to a name. Of course, use discretion for any roles that involve sensitive work or government clearances.

Promote from Within When Possible

Promoting from within demonstrates opportunities for advancement and shows appreciation for employees’ contributions. Allowing internal staff to apply for promotions before seeking external candidates boosts satisfaction and improves morale among your existing employees.

Promoting from within has other benefits, too. It shows employees that their hard work and dedication are appreciated. It also creates opportunities for advancement and helps to retain valuable institutional knowledge. Finally, it gives you time and flexibility to backfill promoted employees on your own schedule while easing the onboarding and transition process.

Turn Employees into Advocates with Smart Govcon Marketing

By following these tips, you can leverage your employees to recruit top talent for your government contracting organization. When they are treated well, employees become brand ambassadors, showcasing your organization’s benefits to their networks.

Investing in employee engagement and empowerment yields positive results for recruitment efforts in the long run. Begin utilizing your employees today to bring in the best talent and help your company grow and succeed.

If you need help, contact the govcon marketing experts at Ocean 5 Strategies. We help companies plan and execute best practices for hiring top talent, starting with your government contractor brand identity and website!