The Unemployed Professors Blog

You must also be aware that there are copyright laws existing, and you must comply with them if you don t want to be sued for using someone s work without citing.

Can you get away with Plagiarism

Image result for plagiarism

Plagiarism: Just the word has ended careers. Yet some of the most successful people in the world have plagiarized. They managed to beat TurnItIn – so maybe your professor’s dire warnings are overblown. Maybe the whole issue is more complicated than it sounds. Here are some of the top five plagiarizers and accused plagiarists – you’ll be shocked.

5. Malcolm Gladwell. His plagiarism is the sneakiest kind. He wouldn’t have been caught: Instead of rephrasing information, he just took anecdotes and stories and retold them, sans attribution, in his writing. Some would argue that this is not a serious issue, but since his entire brand is about making big claims about society and how the world works, it seems incredibly sloppy. Did he beat TurnItIn, or did he just think his readers would never notice? Maybe the world will never know.

4. J.K. Rowling. Yeah, you read that correctly. Although the case was thrown out of court in 2011, Rowling has repeatedly been accused of plagiarizing Adrian Jacobs’ 1987 novel Willy the Wizard. Whether she plagiarized or not, the case goes to show you that even if you are accused of plagiarism, you can still go on to be wealthier than the Queen of England.

3. Vaughn Ward. The rising Republican star was already well known for publicly stating that Puerto Rico is an independent country, and stated that he didn’t care what it was when people called him out. This was embarrassing, but what he did next will shock you. OK, maybe not: Half of his campaign website’s platform was copy-pasted from other Republicans’. That might not be so bad, but his next move was a real head-scratcher: He plagiarized lines, almost verbatim, from a 2004 speech by this guy named Barack Obama. Ward threw his campaign manager under the bus for the website statements, and never really addressed the Obama statement. While this plagiarism may have been a reason for his resounding political defeat, it has not held him back from a career at a corporation related to health care.

2. Jane Goodall: Goodall has done a great deal of, well, good over the years. She has brought attention to extinction and has provided insight into chimpanzees and their relationship to humans. Yet no one is perfect, and everyone makes mistakes. Unfortunately Goodall’s were somewhat serious. Her 2013 book Seeds of Hope featured many passages that were plagiarized not just from the Internet, but from Wikipedia, for goodness’ sake. This was discovered only when the advance review copies were sent for evaluation. Although this would never have passed TurnItIn, it somehow managed to get through the numerous editors at the publisher, Grand Central. Goodall blamed the plagiarism on bad note-taking procedures.

  1. Martin Luther King, Jr. They say that good writers borrow, and great writers steal. Yet in the pre-TurnItIn free for all that was Boston University in the 1950s, MLK failed to attribute scholarly material: He represented the ideas of another PhD student, Jack Boozer, as his own. In 1991, a panel comprised of professors from Boston University confirmed this finding, chose not to revoke his degree, and attached a letter outlining their findings to the copy of the dissertation in the library. Some have suggested that King got away with it because his professors held him to a low standard anyway due to his race. But think of it this way: Most people think King is a hero, and even though he has been proven to be a plagiarist, he still has a holiday named after him.

So as you see, plagiarism doesn’t necessarily ruin your life. And this list is just the people who got caught. It’s obviously better to pass TurnItIn and fly under the radar. With Unemployed Professors, that’s easy.

Gary Ostrower – 3/26/2002

Yet in the pre-TurnItIn free for all that was Boston University in the 1950s, MLK failed to attribute scholarly material He represented the ideas of another PhD student, Jack Boozer, as his own. They must report the offender to Student Services regardless of intent, and may fail the student for the assignment, lower the course grade, or fail the student for the course.

I agree with Edwin Moise. At Cal State Fullerton we impose similar punitive measures, depending on the gravity of the students’ offense. Typically, a student will receive an F for the assignment and that usually results in a failing grade for the course. Then the instructor writes a letter to the judicial officer who sends a letter of reprimand to the student and keeps the case on file for seven years. If the same student is caught again, suspension and/or expulsion are considered. I like to assign essays on the topic of "Why Plagiarism Is Wrong" to the culprits. In my business communication course we go over proper documentation and acknowledgment of sources, so students really have no excuse. I must say, though, that I was overruled once by a university committee after a student’s appeal. This committee ruled that my punishment had been too harsh. I was outraged! When it comes to plagiarism (and other values, really), the standards of ethics just aren’t universally shared.

Resources:

http://hnn.us/articles/650.html

Can you get away with Plagiarism


https://www.copychecker.org/how-to-get-away-with-plagiarism/
]

Is homework useful for kids? If so, what age should it start

The answer to the question of whether homework is useful and necessary depends on who is given it and for what purpose.

Is homework useful for kids? If so, what age should it start?

Is Homework Good for Kids? Here’s What the Research Says

A s kids return to school, debate is heating up once again over how they should spend their time after they leave the classroom for the day.

The no-homework policy of a second-grade teacher in Texas went viral last week, earning praise from parents across the country who lament the heavy workload often assigned to young students. Brandy Young told parents she would not formally assign any homework this year, asking students instead to eat dinner with their families, play outside and go to bed early.

But the question of how much work children should be doing outside of school remains controversial, and plenty of parents take issue with no-homework policies, worried their kids are losing a potential academic advantage. Here’s what you need to know:

For decades, the homework standard has been a “10-minute rule,” which recommends a daily maximum of 10 minutes of homework per grade level. Second graders, for example, should do about 20 minutes of homework each night. High school seniors should complete about two hours of homework each night. The National PTA and the National Education Association both support that guideline.

But some schools have begun to give their youngest students a break. A Massachusetts elementary school has announced a no-homework pilot program for the coming school year, lengthening the school day by two hours to provide more in-class instruction. “We really want kids to go home at 4 o’clock, tired. We want their brain to be tired,” Kelly Elementary School Principal Jackie Glasheen said in an interview with a local TV station. “We want them to enjoy their families. We want them to go to soccer practice or football practice, and we want them to go to bed. And that’s it.”

A New York City public elementary school implemented a similar policy last year, eliminating traditional homework assignments in favor of family time. The change was quickly met with outrage from some parents, though it earned support from other education leaders.

New solutions and approaches to homework differ by community, and these local debates are complicated by the fact that even education experts disagree about what’s best for kids.

The most comprehensive research on homework to date comes from a 2006 meta-analysis by Duke University psychology professor Harris Cooper, who found evidence of a positive correlation between homework and student achievement, meaning students who did homework performed better in school. The correlation was stronger for older students—in seventh through 12th grade—than for those in younger grades, for whom there was a weak relationship between homework and performance.

Cooper’s analysis focused on how homework impacts academic achievement—test scores, for example. His report noted that homework is also thought to improve study habits, attitudes toward school, self-discipline, inquisitiveness and independent problem solving skills. On the other hand, some studies he examined showed that homework can cause physical and emotional fatigue, fuel negative attitudes about learning and limit leisure time for children. At the end of his analysis, Cooper recommended further study of such potential effects of homework.

Despite the weak correlation between homework and performance for young children, Cooper argues that a small amount of homework is useful for all students. Second-graders should not be doing two hours of homework each night, he said, but they also shouldn’t be doing no homework.

Cathy Vatterott, an education professor at the University of Missouri-St. Louis, supports the “10-minute rule” as a maximum, but she thinks there is not sufficient proof that homework is helpful for students in elementary school.

“Correlation is not causation,” she said. “Does homework cause achievement, or do high achievers do more homework?”

Vatterott, the author of Rethinking Homework: Best Practices That Support Diverse Needs, thinks there should be more emphasis on improving the quality of homework tasks, and she supports efforts to eliminate homework for younger kids.

“I have no concerns about students not starting homework until fourth grade or fifth grade,” she said, noting that while the debate over homework will undoubtedly continue, she has noticed a trend toward limiting, if not eliminating, homework in elementary school.

The issue has been debated for decades. A TIME cover in 1999 read: “Too much homework! How it’s hurting our kids, and what parents should do about it.” The accompanying story noted that the launch of Sputnik in 1957 led to a push for better math and science education in the U.S. The ensuing pressure to be competitive on a global scale, plus the increasingly demanding college admissions process, fueled the practice of assigning homework.

“The complaints are cyclical, and we’re in the part of the cycle now where the concern is for too much,” Cooper said. “You can go back to the 1970s, when you’ll find there were concerns that there was too little, when we were concerned about our global competitiveness.”

Cooper acknowledged that some students really are bringing home too much homework, and their parents are right to be concerned.

“A good way to think about homework is the way you think about medications or dietary supplements,” he said. “If you take too little, they’ll have no effect. If you take too much, they can kill you. If you take the right amount, you’ll get better.”

Responses scattered

The Norwegian Ministry of Education believes that the new Education Act should specify that an individual school can require students to do assignments and homework outside of school hours. Brandy Young told parents she would not formally assign any homework this year, asking students instead to eat dinner with their families, play outside and go to bed early.

The parent of a child in a homework-free school with no timetable changes said: “There was less arguing about homework and when it had to be done. But I also think that the school hours should be extended if the no-homework policy continues next year."

Resources:

https://time.com/4466390/homework-debate-research/
https://phys.org/news/2023-11-homework-kids-age.html
https://partner.sciencenorway.no/education-ntnu-pedagogy/is-homework-useful-or-necessary/2095533
]

M. A. Thesis: What is it and what does it need to do

Now that you know what a thesis is, you can decide whether it s a good option for your career or whether a comprehensive exam would be better.

A Master’s thesis is the last paper you need to submit before you get your degree.

What Is a Master’s Thesis?

Before enrolling in a master’s degree program, it’s important that you know what a thesis is and whether you’ll need to write one. Your thesis is the sum of all of your learned knowledge from your master’s program and gives you a chance to prove your capabilities in your chosen field.

A thesis also involves a significant amount of research, and depending on the subject, may require you to conduct interviews, surveys and gather primary and secondary resources. Most graduate programs will expect you to dedicate enough time to developing and writing your thesis, so make sure to learn more about the department’s requirements before enrolling in your master’s program.

What is a Master’s Thesis?

Unlike thesis projects for undergraduates, which are shorter in length and scope, a master’s thesis is an extensive scholarly paper that allows you to dig into a topic, expand on it and demonstrate how you’ve grown as a graduate student throughout the program. Graduate schools often require a thesis for students in research-oriented degrees to apply their practical skills before culmination.

For instance, a psychology major may investigate how colors affect mood, or an education major might write about a new teaching strategy. Depending on your program, the faculty might weigh the bulk of your research differently.

Regardless of the topic or field of study, your thesis statement should allow you to:

Once the thesis is completed, students usually must defend their work for a panel of two or more department faculty members.

What is the Difference Between a Thesis and a Non-Thesis Master’s Program?

A thesis is a common requirement in many research-focused fields, but not every master’s program will require you to complete one. Additionally, some fields allow you to choose between a thesis and a non-thesis track. In the case of a non-thesis program, you won’t have to write a lengthy paper, but you will have to take more classes to meet your graduation requirement.

Whether you choose a thesis or non-thesis program, you’ll still be required to complete a final project to prove your critical thinking skills. If you favor a non-thesis program, your project may be a capstone project or field experience.

Thesis vs. Dissertation

It’s common for graduate students to mistakenly use the words “thesis” and “dissertation” interchangeably, but they are generally two different types of academic papers. As stated above, a thesis is the final project required in the completion of many master’s degrees. The thesis is a research paper, but it only involves using research from others and crafting your own analytical points. On the other hand, the dissertation is a more in-depth scholarly research paper completed mostly by doctoral students. Dissertations require candidates create their own research, predict a hypothesis, and carry out the study. Whereas a master’s thesis is usually around 100 pages, the doctoral dissertation is at least double that length.

Benefits of Writing a Thesis

There are several advantages that you can reap from choosing a master’s program that requires the completion of a thesis project, according to Professor John Stackhouse. A thesis gives you the valuable opportunity to delve into interesting research for greater depth of learning in your career area. Employers often prefer students with a thesis paper in their portfolio, because it showcases their gained writing skills, authoritative awareness of the field, and ambition to learn. Defending your thesis will also fine-tune critical communication and public speaking skills, which can be applied in any career. In fact, many graduates eventually publish their thesis work in academic journals to gain a higher level of credibility for leadership positions too.

Tips for Your Master’s Thesis

Writing your thesis paper will be a long process, so the first step is to make certain you have a close faculty advisor to guide you along the way. Before starting, consult with other scholarly texts to see exactly how a master’s thesis should be structured with an introduction, literary review, main body, conclusion, and bibliography. Finding a thesis topic may be the simplest or hardest part for you, but choose one that interests you and gives you room to explore, according to Ta Da! Creating a detailed outline will prompt an easier flow of ideas for a well-written thesis. It’s advised that you stay aware of your thesis defense date to allow enough time for proofreading and possibly sending your work to an editor.

Overall, a master’s thesis is designed to support a graduate student’s academic and professional qualifications for a degree by presenting research findings. While it’s important to note that some graduate programs offer non-thesis tracks for master’s degrees, the thesis is the main capstone staple for many others. Now that you know what a thesis is, you can decide whether it’s a good option for your career or whether a comprehensive exam would be better.

Frequently Asked Questions

How long is a thesis for a master’s?

A master’s thesis typically ranges from 100 to 300 pages, not including the bibliography. The length will depend on various factors, including the subject matter and method of your research. There’s no ‘correct’ page length you should aim for. Instead, your thesis should be long enough to properly convey all necessary information in a clear and concise manner.

Can you fail a master’s thesis?

When you defend your thesis, the committee evaluates whether you understand your field and focus area. In most cases, the advisor you’re working with might help you go over your defense beforehand and address any questions that might come up during the final presentation. If you can’t correctly answer crucial questions from the committee, you will likely be given a chance to resubmit your thesis after making corrections.

Are there specific subjects that don’t require a thesis versus those that do?

Not all subjects will require a thesis at the end of your studies. Applied graduate school programs that focus on hands-on experience over theoretical work will mostly favor evaluating you through applied research projects. For example, nursing, education, and business programs prepare graduates for specific career placements and require them to complete internships or supervised fieldwork.

Master’s Thesis Title: Bad & Better Examples

In consultation with the instructor of record and the History or Public History general advisors, they will select a paper advisor for the course, knowledgeable in the student s field, who will very likely fulfill the role of thesis director and committee chair for the student after the GRS. Your thesis is the sum of all of your learned knowledge from your master s program and gives you a chance to prove your capabilities in your chosen field.

Here are four useful tips on thesis writing that will prepare you for the process.

Resources:

https://www.gradschoolhub.com/faqs/what-is-a-thesis/
https://www.txst.edu/history/graduate/grad-forms/ma-thesis-info.html
https://custom-writing.org/blog/master-thesis-tips
]

How to Write a Bullet-Proof Blog Post Outline in 5 Minutes

LL-Blog-Post-Outline-3

Start with the Main Header

Google favors posts with a clear hierarchy which means subpoints need to be nested inside of main points. The post title is the first header (H1), and that’s the most important text in a post. Make sure that you do your keyword research ahead of time and use the exact keyword in the H1.

You’ll also want to use the exact target keyword in the H2. We usually change the H2 a little from the post title (H1), just so it isn’t repetitive on the page. Here, the H2 is the first header in the body of the post, and we’ve altered it slightly from the H1, "How to Write a Winning Blog Post Outline."

There should only be one H2 in each post. This single dominant header is a signal to Google that these are the words that this post is about, and, because it’s an echo of the title, Google knows exactly what people will get when reading this post.

How To Write A Blog Post Outline In 7 Steps:

⭐ Related Blog Post: What Is A Target Audience?

You must know exactly what actions you want people to take with your content. Then you want to know what steps you want them to take after they engage with that piece of content — you want to take them for a ride down the buyers journey.

You can create blog posts or other pieces of content to meet your audience at each stage of the customer journey. Make sure you are using the #R3MAT Method to reach them where they are.

Customer Journey

If you need help finding your ideal reader or help discovering your customer avatar make sure you fill out our worksheet. This worksheet will help you define exactly who your dream customer is.

FREE Download!

CUSTOMER AVATAR WORKSHEET

Step 1: Perform Keyword Research

We use each one every time we create a blog post. This helps us determine what our audience is searching for and gives us an idea for what type of context the blog should have as well as the length.

Once you type in a word or question, Google will show you the top searched questions right away. Each one of those listed are potential blog titles. You could write a blog post on each question if you wanted.

How to blog Google example

You want to get a feel for the main points and subtopic headings (H1, H2, H3 headings) that these blogs use and take note of the length of the blog. This is something the algorithm leans heavy on.

ahrefs blogging example

MarketMuse uses AI and machine learning to help you build content strategies, accelerate content creation, and inform content decisions. They specifically help you see what keywords and phrases you should add into your blog to get the highest possible rankings.

Markmuse content planning strategy

Step 2: Identify What You Want To Accomplish With Your Blog Post

For this step I like to create a Google document that includes everything we want to accomplish for this blog post — this puts all of our important metrics and goals in one organized place.

How to create a blog outline example

We document this information because we evaluated what metrics and data was relevant for our audience and business. Which also makes it helpful for your team because they can see exactly what is going on at any point and time.

Step 3: Organize Ideas And Research

I use the post it notes because I can write down any important subtopic information and move it around until I find a place where it fits in perfectly in my blog outline. This makes it easy to get the right flow in your content so your blog is easy to read.

Google pulls the text from headings and if your headings are also highly searched key terms then you have more opportunities to rank for multiple topics for that one blog post.

When I have conversations with my team I record them and upload them into Searchie.io where it fully transcribes every one of my conversations. This means I never have to waste time going back and listening to hours of conversation to find one key point.

Step 4: Put It All Together

Asana example

Asana allows our writers and teammates to communicate in one place. And our teammates can also see what stage someone is at with a task without ever having to ask for an update!

Step 5: Get Writing!

FREE Download!

Resource:

https://www.lean-labs.com/blog/how-to-write-a-blog-post-outline
https://www.digitalmarketing.org/blog/how-to-write-a-blog-post-outline

Small Business Guide To Call Answering

small business message

Small Business Guide To Call Answering

We’ve all been on the receiving end of a phone message that was delivered incorrectly. If it weren’t so, than The Game of Telephone never would have been created. You know the one, right? The first player relays a message to the second, whispered in their ear. The second whispers it to the next player in line with no repeats. it continues this way through several other people. As the message goes through each set of lips and ears, it changes. After it is whispered to the final person, they say what they think the message was, and everyone gets a good laugh. Because it’s often so wrong. It changed little by little with each listening ear.

Outside of the game of telephone, the same problem comes up. Was it Cheryl who called or Sherry? Shirley? There wasn’t any whispering. There was only one person between the caller and the person who the message was intended for. But there was plenty of opportunity for some confusion.

What happened?

The person taking down the message could have failed to communicate the right message. They could have forgotten to get a name. Or, worse, a return phone number. Taking a phone message is much more than just getting down basic information. It seems like a small part of the whole small business pie. It can fall through the cracks. But it isn’t. Taking down a message incorrectly can mean no call-back for that person. You could potentially ruin the relationship with the person on the other end of the phone.

Slow down.

Contrary to popular belief, the goal of a phone call isn’t to get the person on the other line off the phone as quickly as possible. Not in the mind of some customers, at least. A recent study done by Gallup found that customers prefer their service to be thorough rather than quick and to-the-point. They’d much rather someone take their time and help them out, knowing the job was done correctly. This translates over to message taking as well. Yes, you have a lot of things to do, but the moment the phone rings, your attention goes to that caller.

answer the phone correctly for your small business

cat answering phone2. You Can Make or Break a Caller’s Day with the Words You Say

Now that we’ve covered tone, let’s move onto what you actually say when you pick up the phone. It’s important to immediately introduce yourself and the company you work for. Do not just answer the phone “hello?” This gives the caller zero information as to who they’re talking to or what business they’re calling. Instead, answer the phone (while smiling, of course) and say “Hi this is *your name* with *your company* how may I help you this *time of day (morning, afternoon, evening)*. You can re-work this greeting to whatever matches your speaking style best as long as you are introducing yourself and the company you are representing from the get-go and lastly, are maintaining professionalism, of course.

With that being said, it’s absolutely paramount that you maintain a professional tone throughout the conversation. Try to avoid slang and definitely avoid any language you’d use at a bar with your closest friends. Instead of saying things like “Yeah, I don’t know” say “Let me find out for you.” These small but impactful changes in your language can greatly affect how the caller perceives your business.

Listen Up Buttercup

Our next topic on how to answer the phone is listening. We all know that there is a big difference between hearing someone and actually listening to someone. When someone calls your business, give them your full attention. You may be tempted to multitask, especially if it’s a busy workday. We get it – you have a lot going on. Your boss is pressing you for that assignment you completely forgot about and your mom keeps texting you and asking what cookies mean on ‘the interweb.’ The truth is that multitasking will only distract you from the call and potentially frustrate the caller. In other words, refrain from multitasking at all costs and do your very best to focus on the caller.

We recommend taking notes on every call to ensure that you’re focused. Detailed notes will also only help you in the future. When someone knows that they are being listened to, it establishes a sense of trust and credibility. On the other hand, if you’re typing away, fumbling around in your drawer for that pen you lost, or the worst of them all- eating, the caller may feel unimportant and will take their business elsewhere.

How to Answer the Phone When Your Friend Who Is a Business Partner Calls

It just may happen that you have friends throughout a specific industry or at a competing firm and you may come in contact with them throughout the working day. They may even be prompted to call you, whether for professional reasons or just to see how things are going.

The important thing is to maintain professionalism but without coming across as cold, insensitive, or insincere as doing so will not only cost you your friendship but may also cost you a potential business transaction or even your job. If your friend calls and your friend is a business partner, you have slightly more leeway than if a friend who is not a business partner calls.

Answer the call with a professional introduction as noted above. Address any professional concerns your friend may have, even if your friend isn’t calling with professional concerns. When all professional concerns are addressed, feel free to indulge in the usually friendly banter.

But try to keep the conversation quiet and private while using professional language; doing otherwise may create an air that you are not concerned with the working environment. Having a short, 5-15 minute conversation is not cause for concern as a friend who is a business partner may offer potential business or growth opportunities for your respective company.

Maintaining a Good Business Partnership

There are many attributes to an ideal business partnership, primary among them effective and professional communication. So long as your business partner is oriented towards creating and finding effective solutions for you or your collective companies’ problems, your partner is hard-working and fair, and your business partner is positive and shares your values, maintaining an open line of communication is an essential element to maintaining this positive relationship.

Unlike the usual phone etiquette, a phone call with a business partner allows some flexibility in content and conduct so that you can maintain a positive environment for all parties involved.

Since positivity is the key to productivity, you shouldn’t let your normal work expectations hinder you from maintaining a cordial relationship with your business partners, especially if they’re your friends.

So long as you find the right balance between personal and professional conversation, you can enjoy the benefits of chatting with your business partners whenever you’re at work and striving to succeed.

Katie Haynes is a senior author at everyday-courtesy.com with over 15 years of experience in marketing and psychology. As a freelance consultant, she also supports companies and executives in overcoming communication challenges. Katie is a passionate digital nomad working on her first book on the art of communication.

It’s the moment you’ve been waiting for: you reformatted your resume, secured your references, and composed a genuine and constructive cover letter. You managed to make it past the first.

You’ve polished your resume, researched a variety of companies, and submitted some applications in hopes of receiving a quality position. You wait and then. you get the bad news: rejection.

Sources:

https://apolloansweringservice.com/the-right-way-to-answer-the-phone-for-your-small-business/
https://justdigitalinc.com/how-to-answer-the-phone/
https://everyday-courtesy.com/how-do-you-answer-phone-calls-from-friends-from-business-partners/

The Ultimate Guide to Employer Branding

Employer Branding

Why is it Important to Have an Employer Branding Strategy?

Today’s candidates have access to a wealth of information about which jobs are available and which companies are hiring. The modern candidate will spend time researching both the job and the employer to identify which options are most appealing.

A strong employer branding strategy can be critical to your recruiting efforts. That said, a large portion of organizations haven’t invested in this area yet. A survey by iHire found that nearly 40% of U.S. companies do not have an employer branding strategy. This is a major oversight when it comes to creating awareness about your employer brand, and an opportunity for those who plan to capitalize on its power.

Your employer branding strategy dictates how candidates perceive your company, what they experience during the hiring process, and if hired, what happens to ensure they remain with your company. Ultimately, the goal is to ensure that candidates understand your value proposition as an employer. In other words, they should clearly understand what your company can promise them in return for their commitment.

“An employer brand strategy starts with your employer value proposition. It defines the real experience of working for your company and articulates the shared expectations between employer and employee,” says Valerie Katz, director of employer brand and employee experience at ZoomInfo.

5 Steps to Improve Your Employer Brand

1. Analyze Your Company Culture

If you want candidates to perceive your company as a great place to work, it’s got to deliver. And a strong employer brand starts from within. It’s critical to remember that company culture is the factor that will likely have the most impact — positive or negative — on your employer brand.

In the past, a flashy career page and a few hand-picked testimonials could make any company look like a dream employer. But in today’s hyper-connected world of professional social networks like LinkedIn and employer review sites, word about your company culture travels fast. If your branding efforts promise an experience you don’t actually offer, candidates will figure it out quickly and do their best to warn others about what they experienced.

The best way to gauge the strength of your company culture is to speak directly with your employees. Get a read on how they feel about the subject. Whether through anonymous surveys or face-to-face meetings, find out what they love most about working at your company — and what they’d like to be different. Here are some questions to ask your team about your company culture:

Listening to your employees will not only help you identify weaknesses your company can improve upon, but will also identify strengths you should highlight as part of your employer brand.

2. Develop a Content Strategy to Promote Your Employer Brand

What is employer brand content?

Employer brand content represents the materials you build to inform the broader candidate pool about what it’s like to work at your company. The content you publish on job sites, professional social media networks, review sites, and your company website, as well as the content used in candidate outreach, should all work together to create a positive employer brand image.

Why is it important to have a strong employer brand content strategy?

To build a strong brand as an employer, you must craft a comprehensive, multi-channel content strategy to engage your target candidates. Although an ongoing content strategy is a time-consuming commitment that won’t show results immediately, it sets the tone for how your efforts will ultimately pay off in the long run.

First, consult your candidate personas

Profiles of potential candidates include a set of preferred characteristics like work history, skills, goals, employment preferences, and much more. They can help you personalize recruiting content for your ideal candidates.

For example: let’s say your ideal candidate for an entry-level marketing role values collaboration in their work environment. You can use this information to create a short video of your marketing team working together or a blog post that explains your values around working together within the organization.

Then, tell a story with your employer brand

The goal of your content strategy is to engage candidates on an emotional level. Captivating an audience through a story or narrative adds a personal element that differentiates your employer brand from others.

Through written and visual brand storytelling, talk about the journey of specific employees. These stories can help resonate with candidates, showing your company as a collection of real people rather than faceless workers.

Emphasize your company values

3. Establish an Employee Advocacy Program

Not all of your employees are recruiters, but they’re an integral part of the employer brand-building process. Consider offering incentives to employees who refer new hires, share content, and promote branded information.

Remember: employees who feel valued and appreciated will be more willing to advocate for your company. Recognize and reward your employees’ efforts and they’ll become valuable brand ambassadors.

4. Leverage Social Media

Most recruiters leverage platforms like Twitter and Facebook to post job listings, but that doesn’t contribute much to establishing your brand. Instead, your team can use social media to engage with candidates and share valuable content. Consider creating a separate profile for your recruiting efforts to distinguish your employer branding from your traditional marketing efforts.

5. Test and Measure Your Employer Brand

Improving your employer brand is an ongoing process and may seem hard to quantify. But much like marketers test and measure the success of their campaigns, recruiters should try and evaluate their strategies.

Reviews and ratings

Your company ratings on review sites such as Comparably or Glassdoor are extremely important as they are the first place many candidates go to learn about the quality of your employer brand. Track your ratings over time and identify common critiques that could indicate a larger problem within your company culture.

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The employer branding strategy in five steps

Step 1: Define Your Employer Value Proposition (EVP)

Best Practice: You may find it helpful to turn things around and instead start off by asking yourself: What does not define our company? What are some things we do not stand for?

Step 2: Create a Communication Plan

Too many companies stop at step one. They create their unique EVP, sink a lot of time into it and consider it a done deal. But, now is only the beginning of your journey! You need to communicate your EVP to the world.

To do this, you should take a closer look at your ‘talent target group’ and understand the contact points you have with them. You’ll need to have a deeper understanding of where this contact can take place:

Your EVP is a reflection of what makes your organisation special, but you may need to attune it to your target group. That will most likely come about in the communication channel that you use. With that in mind, make sure you are using channels that make sense for the talent you’re trying to reach.

Step 3: Implement Your Content Strategy

After you have outlined your corporate brand and defined the communication channels you are going to use, it is time to think about your marketing and content. Consider the following:

Best Practice: You should publish social media content regularly so that social media users will follow you on a long-term basis. An editorial calendar should help.

Step 4: Find and Recruit Employees

Now, it is time to harvest the fruits of your labour. In this step, your employer branding initiatives merge with your recruiting initiatives. Because your employer branding feeds directly into your recruitment process, it is now becoming the first point of contact with your company. If you impress at this stage, you will find yourself reaping the rewards.

Step 5: Retain Your Top Talent

You want the employees you recruit to stay at your company. The positive impression they got from the application process should be confirmed in their everyday working life. This means that you will need to constantly keep working on your employer brand.

11 Employer Branding Best Practices

Define Your Goals

Your brand and culture don’t have to be left to chance. You can define what you want your employer brand to be based on your mission, vision, and values. With a plan in place, curate the culture and brand you want to see in your organization.

Define your brand’s goals, including how you want candidates and employees to talk about your business. What sets apart your employee experience and employee value proposition (EVP) from those of your competitors? In what ways can your employer brand support your talent strategy? Determine the elements of your employer brand that are most important to prioritize.

Set Actionable Objectives

With clear priorities for your employer brand in mind, the next step is to set actionable objectives to help you achieve those goals. For each objective, write two or three key results — metrics indicating that you’ve achieved your objective.

An objective could be incorporating your values into job descriptions and performance reviews, for example, to create clearer accountability for behaviors that align with your values. A key result for this objective might be achieving a 25% increase in values-driven behavior throughout the daily course of work.

Use Social Media and SEO to Your Advantage

Your social media channels and content published on your careers site provide opportunities to communicate your brand to potential candidates. Content demonstrating employee life and the experience of working in specific roles conveys your brand and helps candidates decide whether your organization is a good fit.

It’s important that your representation of the employee experience on these channels be accurate and genuine. Misalignment between what candidates expect from the employee experience and what they encounter can break trust. This loss of trust detracts from your employer brand, reduces employee engagement, and potentially leads to higher turnover.

Identify Your Candidate Persona

The best candidates don’t just have the skills you need; they’re also aligned with your values and culture. Define what an ideal candidate who drives your culture forward looks like in terms of skills, behaviors, and aptitudes.

Spell out examples of values-driven behaviors in each role. Once you’ve identified your ideal candidate persona for each role, you can implement assessments to measure those factors in job seekers. Develop behavior-based interview questions to ascertain values alignment during the selection stage of the hiring process.

Audit How Your Brand Is Perceived

It’s important to see how your brand is perceived on the market. Public perceptions of your business as an employer are a significant part of your employer brand. They can either be a strategic talent acquisition tool or a liability to talent attraction strategy. Understanding what people are saying about your brand can provide direction for setting objectives for your employer branding strategy.

Job-review sites like Glassdoor and Fairygodboss are good places to see what current and former employees are saying about your brand. People share their real experiences on these sites, and employers have little control over what’s posted.

However, employers can monitor this content and quickly address any concerns raised by users. Once changes have been implemented, employers can respond to make users aware of how the situation has been handled.

Establish What Makes Your Brand Unique

No employer brand is the same, and your real value lies in your differences. Find those elements that set your brand apart, whether those include your values, your sense of employee camaraderie, or other aspects. These differentiators are among your brand’s biggest assets and selling points for job seekers.

Develop a marketing campaign to communicate these unique factors to candidates. Candidates who are strongly aligned with your brand — and those differentiators in particular — will be most invested in pursuing employment with your company. And those candidates whose values align with yours are more likely to stay engaged and employed with your company longer.

Streamline the Application Experience

Candidate experience is an important factor in employer branding. Your recruitment and employer brand isn’t just for employees: it’s also for candidates who don’t make the cut. Keep your hiring process simple, and prioritize communication with candidates about what’s going on with their application.

When you provide a good candidate experience, you leave a good impression on applicants — even those that don’t make the cut. Their experiences, and what they share with friends and family, contribute to how your employer brand is perceived on the market.

Invest in Your Employees’ Career and Well-Being

Taking care of your employees is crucial to building a positive employer brand. Prioritizing employee health demonstrates your commitment to the workforce, which sits well with employees, candidates, and consumers alike. Provide resources for your workforce’s physical and mental health, and survey employees before adding new benefits to determine what changes will have the biggest impact.

5 Great Employer Branding Examples

Canva

Canva’s careers site puts employee experience front and center with dynamic videos and images showcasing employees at work — and at play. The company emphasizes programs designed to support women in the workplace.

Microsoft

Microsoft puts purpose first with the slogan “Do what you love: Create the future you want” that greets visitors to the careers site. The technology company features employee voices and highlights their stories. The Microsoft careers page even integrates Glassdoor reviews to give candidates a transparent glimpse of life at the company.

SAP’s employer brand highlights opportunities for promotion and internal mobility. The brand emphasizes that each employee experienced a different journey to where they are, and those experiences are highly valued.

Equal Experts

Equal Experts’s career site focuses on the benefits of the community and culture within the company. The page emphasizes inclusion and highlights employee stories from around the globe. The careers page links to the company’s values statement, appealing to candidates who share those values to apply.

Chipotle

Chipotle’s mission-oriented branding encourages candidates to apply and participate in its mission to “cultivate a better world.” The page highlights the benefits of working there, from free food to debt-free degrees — backed up by real statements from employees.

Sources:

https://pipeline.zoominfo.com/recruiting/employer-brand
https://www.personio.com/hr-lexicon/employer-branding-2/
https://www.betterworks.com/magazine/employer-branding-strategy/