THE BLOG

Winning Over Millennial Talent: Use the Interview As an Employer Branding Tool

05/22/2015 12:58 pm ET | Updated May 22, 2016

By: Suzanna Thekkekara

In India, the idea of employer branding in catching on with companies like Mahindra using the RISE campaign and interweaving it with its employer brand. MNC firms like Capgemini are harnessing the power of social media for their recruitment needs as well. However, by and large, employer branding is an area that is just starting to attract the attention of companies. Employer branding is often mistaken for just Twitter and Facebook, however, these are just forms of socialmedia. If you want to create a good employer brand, you need to work from the core, make sure that you have the right values, engagement initiatives and reward mechanisms in place. This will help you promote your employer brand better via social media and other channels.

The interview is one of the most powerful employer branding tools. According to a survey quoted by Business Insider millennial job candidates see their job as a life experience and not the end goal. What this really means is that you need to sell the career opportunity to millennials and let them see how your company can fit in with their personal outlook on life or give them an experience that enriches them. The interview is a great way to convey these messages since it gives you maximum time with your target audience. According to a Millenial Innovation Survey by Deloitte, Indian millennials are more likely than their global counterparts to think that they work for an innovative company and feel that their organization helps them be innovative. Thus innovation and being empowered to be innovative is also seen as a major draw in an employer.

A good interview is one that is skillfully done and it tests competencies that are needed for the job. The candidate is left with such a great experience that he/she promotes your company and employer brand through word of mouth and makes great recommendations on social media. A good interview asks situation based questions, leaves room for the candidate to speak and asks for plenty of examples. A good interview is one that is well researched -- prepare in advance and look up your candidate and ask questions that help you understand the candidate's experience better.

A great interview is one that adds to your employer brand as well. Use the interview to sell your employer brand. Of course we expect candidates to read up on the company, but the interview can be used to deliver that personal touch and connect with the candidate. The attitude that the employer conveys during an interview is of utmost importance. Qualities valued in the company are conveyed through tone of voice and phrases used and how the candidate is treated. While high pressure interviews may need to be used for certain roles, the interviewer needs to be able to connect with the candidate on a human level, even in these scenarios. The bottom line is that interview candidates need to be treated with respect and they like to be valued and empowered. Organizations that show how they empathize and care for their people are the ones that will win the war for talent in the long run.

Suzanna Thekkekara is an HR Manager in the banking and financial services industry. and has also helped build a millennial driven advisory business in India. She has a Master's degree in International Employee Relations and HR management from the London School of Economics.