A few weeks ago, we delivered a webinar (which is available on catch up if you fancy a watch) exploring the data around brand reputation and checking out some examples of what good (and not-so-good) looks like.

Someone asked the question: Can you talk more about how tech can help humanise your brand?

That's obviously a YES! from me. I can think of 4 broad buckets for starters, and I'm including links to some examples as well:

A great careers site

Careers sites aren’t just art and copy anymore. You can integrate all kinds of tech into your site to make it a better experience for all. For example, you could have a social wall to pull in all of your content from your various feeds, given that social content is inevitably more personal and current than the latest copywritten-and-amended-and-signed-off-by-legal corporate web copy you've got. 

You can make your search smarter and more human – for example, for Sainsbury’s, we’ve integrated a search engine that understands what you’re looking for in a role even if you use the wrong job title or even misspell your words. That may sound really simple but it's effective. The tech behind it is smart and complicated, but all the user experiences is extra ease in finding what they're looking for. We can link jobs to certain content that people might view, to make their time on site feel more personalised. 

And we can even embed a chatbot with a cheeky voice (like the one we did for The AA) to guide users through the site. Careers site tech should make the experience easier, more personal, and more fun. 

A richer content experience

Film is key. It’s a great way to tell your stories and feature your people. But the question was about tech, and film isn’t tech as such... so if you’re talking strictly technology, 360 immersion is a great option for helping people understand the working environment and challenges early on. 

If you can add virtual reality to that, you’re really giving people an experience. If you're working in an environment that isn't easy to visit, you have too much volume for in-person visits, or perhaps your working scenarios are rarified like the military, police, etc, then applying VR can make a lot of sense. 

The rich experiences in my view create more engaging, more human connections with who you are as an employer. It’s more meaningful and impactful, more likely to be remembered, and encourages people to see you as an employer who is open and transparent.

A better candidate experience

Using technology through the candidate experience can obviously help and there's lots of adoption of this in the industry already. 

Video interviewing may feel like it’s less personal than a face-to-face interview, but if you use it to replace a paper part of the process, or just a phone interview, it can be an improvement. And of course, it matters how your video interview is carried out. Are you asking them to submit a video and then some entity the candidate can't imagine, human or AI, will assess them? Less personal. Or are you using teleconferencing to fit more in, cut down on travel for both parties, and make a virtual human connection? That's just a sensible use of tech.  

Assessments can be made techy in all sorts of ways – for example, I was in a team where we worked with a corporate bank to create an immersive iPad based experience where candidates did a 60-minute business challenge that really gave them a view on what the role would entail, and gave observers a chance to see their skills in a live scenario. 

Again, VR can be useful paired with good occupational psychology work, to create challenges like situational judgment tests, where the candidate really loses themselves in the experience and you get a better assessment out of it too. 

A bit of fun (and exposure)

Tech can just be fun though. We have recently created an augmented reality app for the AA that brings their careers chatbot to life as a cartoon you can place anywhere around you -- soon to go live. 

In the more distant past, I worked with a team that created a fibre optic garden on university campuses to promote JP Morgan technology roles.

Put together with the rest of their campaign, their applications doubled year on year because we had appealed to fellow technologists by showing how inspiring and beautiful technology could be. 

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