Heading into 2020, Micron Technology Global Talent Brand Manager John Taylor said his team’s number one priority is innovation around engagement in their global talent markets.
“We want to make better use of our existing data to learn more about our global audiences,” he said. “A lot of factors go into that. We’re making sure we can measure what happens out in the market and make data-driven decisions.”
He said their second priority will be better managing candidate experience at scale.
“We have a global footprint, we’re in 18 countries and have 37,000 employees,” said John. “That also equates to a lot of people in our recruitment funnel.”
John said as they’ve been working to globalize their campaigns this past year, they’ve needed to figure out how to manage relevant, local content, and scalable, consistent messaging.
“We want a familiar look and feel regardless of location,” he said. “While building out our FY20 strategy for talent marketing to include regional perspectives, we’ve been expanding in new markets. This means more research and learning for us, so we may invest differently.”
For their expansion, they’re focusing on discovery and research to ensure they’re being thoughtful and intentional about how they access a market.
“For example, over the past year, we ramped efforts in Japan,” said John. “We did a deep dive to understand our target audience, the channels they engage with, what they care about, and what they expect from an employer. We spent significant time on that work prior to launching anything.”
As a result of that work, he shared, when they were ready to engage, they saw higher engagement numbers. Micron also enabled programmatic media to target the correct audience and then retarget them as appropriate to drive up that conversion rate.
John also said, as they expanded their content strategy and reach, it was important for them to share stories which reflect the company’s vision and mission.
“It can’t only be marketing speak,” said John. “We’re intentional about looking for a way to produce real, authentic, and relatable stories for our audience.”
For example, in their Japanese market, they had several team members share stories around their time off work.
“We learned that PTO was a big deal in Japan,” he said. “You get a certain number of days off for the year, but can you actually use them at your company? Micron recognizes that time off is important to our team members in Japan. So, we had fun with some stories around that, and the content created and shared around that topic received incredible engagement.”
But, said John, working at such a large scale has its challenges.
According to John, their global team flexes around the time differences to accommodate each other.
“As a team, we are thoughtful and seek input at the local level to ensure we understand their needs and the local market,” he said. “That’s the heart of it.”
Looking forward to 2020, John said they are also adapting to the evolving talent market.
“We’re seeing a noticeable shift across the marketing industry moving from a reactive, campaign-driven approach to talent marketing towards a more strategic, forward-looking function,” said John. “We hear people speaking about more productive relationships with their global marketing team and using a more rigorous, data-driven approach to marketing campaigns. Talent marketing is becoming more of a discipline.”
John said those changes require an understanding of data and being able to adjust as you go, instead of getting locked into one strategy.
“You need to pivot and make adjustments quickly, based on the data,” he said.
Moving forward, he said he and his team want to better understand and engage where they have gaps in measuring ROI and other parts of their program.
“We want to spend more time with our data science team and make sure that we’re able to scrub the data coming in and turn it into something actionable,” said John. “That’s how we’re going to better inform our spend, our resources, and our time in 2020.”
One of the biggest trends he’s looking forward to seeing in 2020 is the utilization of AI platforms in the recruitment funnel and how it changes talent marketing.
“We’ve implemented an AI platform at Micron, which we think will change how the mid-level recruitment funnel is managed in terms of automation and efficiency,” said John. “If it helps free up some of our TA staff from some of those day-to-day tasks, it will create opportunity to utilize their expertise and soft skills in other areas. We see potential for positive impacts to the overall candidate experience.”
He said AI may change how their organization operates, and it may enable them to try things that they haven’t been able to do yet.
On top of their high-priority 2020 goals, John said they also hope to improve their metrics and how they can execute on them.
“We are focused on improving funnel metrics,” he said. “We want to be able to go back and talk to the marketing organization or the business and be able to clearly articulate what is happening with their investment for any of the projects that we’ve partnered on.”
He said the primary goal here is to improve visibility across the business. And he’s hoping to expand their grassroots talent advocacy efforts as well.
John said finding these major goals and executing on them starts with leveraging what you have.
“For us, that means continuing to establish and grow effective, close partnerships with our marketing team and folks across the business who we can leverage to share their knowledge when necessary,” he said. “That means getting input from folks across the board to make sure that you’re engaging correctly with specific audiences.”
He said the same principle holds true for their external partners and emphasized the importance of spending time with your vendors.
“If you have a great vendor that you’ve been working with for a long time, don’t sit back and say ‘everything’s great,’” said John. “Continue to mature that relationship. Ask questions, make sure you understand them and where they’re going, and that it’s aligned with where you’re going as an organization.”
He also emphasized the importance of utilizing active knowledge sharing with industry peers, like the Talent Marketing Board.
Most importantly, to set yourself up for success in the new year, John said not to be afraid to launch a program and then iterate from there.
“The key is to actually start something,” he said. “It’s easier to adjust your course once your ship has sailed than to actually get it out of the harbor.”
He also advised spending lots of time on the front end with new partners and vendors.
“Make sure there’s a clear understanding of what your organization is trying to achieve before you begin something new,” said John.
John Taylor from Micron Technology has been a member of the Talent Marketing Board since 2019. You can follow him on LinkedIn.