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Akanksha, Standard Acquisition Subject-Matter Expert, Bharti Airtel talks to CareerBuilder India about the employer branding, social media recruitment strategy and a lot more…

What is Bharti Airtel doing for employment branding?

Bharti Airtel is doing a lot in the space of employer branding. In fact, the journey that we started some good 4 years back and today we have grown a multifold in this respect. Starting from the very basic of defining our very own employer brand, the focus is more on social recruiting and social employer branding, which means that we are very active on the digital space, on digital handles like Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and that’s exactly where we feel it’s the need of the hour to be in that space.

What is this for?

It is for social recruiting, which is primarily hiring. Apart from that, definitely it is branding also, because we know that a lot of population that we are targeting, a lot of target segment or talent segment that we call, are sitting in that area. If we are looking at the younger population, then we know that they are on Facebook, or they are on twitter, and if we want to look at professionals in the middle management or senior management, all of them are on LinkedIn. So, these are certain areas, which are popular, which are popular at one point of time for networking purpose, but today we feel these are very active mediums for employer branding as well.

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What is the need for employment branding internally? What about metrics?

We feel that the employer branding is very important for the external population, but more slightly, our internal population should also believe in that employer brand. So, Airtel does a lot of things for the internal employees as well, so that the employer brand resonates among one and all. One of them, for example would be the leadership video blog, which we have of late launched, which is called Face-to-Face. This is the medium through which leadership connects with the employees through videos on mobile and kind of spread the word about the employer band which is Jobs Never Done Before. So, that’s the one area at least in the internal space that we are dealing with.

Going back to your question on tracking the employer brand metric. There are lots of ways & means through which we can track it; one of them, which is most powerful are the surveys. So, Airtel participates in the lots of surveys like great place to work, Gallup, which test the pulse of the internal employees as to what they feel about the organization and also lets us know what the external population, the passive or the active prospects outside Airtel, what they think about the organization.

How important is pay-scale?

Definitely something which would attract a lot of people to Bharti Airtel, but that matter any good organization, but there is a lot more that Bharti Airtel does. I think it is the kind of opportunity that we provide to people. Airtel has been a first in a lot of places, be it in services, or the products that we have launched or the milestones that we have achieved; and this has all happened because of the people, which make Bharti Airtel, which means, this is the opportunity that these people actually got to work on, and that’s the message that we actually send to everybody out there, that this is the place, where you kind of work on certain roles, which are not deputation ones, you make your own career over here. If this is what your role is ABC is something that you are supposed to do, you have the opportunity to work on XYZ as well. So, it’s the kind of enriched roles that we talk the most about which attract a lot of people. And of course, Bharti Airtel has a very strong leadership team, which acts as ‘Talent Magnet’, so a lot of people would want to join Bharti Airtel to be a part of employee base, which interacts with the kind of leadership that we have.

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How important is social media in recruitment?

The first thing that comes to my mind is LinkedIn, because it’s a professional network. I think, one of the most key things about LinkedIn for the job seekers specially is to keep the profile updated and to make it 100% complete because it speaks volumes about you; it is your face to the external world, as to what you are doing, so that’s one, and secondly, I think networking. I would talk a lot about LinkedIn because it’s a professional network. So, LinkedIn is a place where you kind of network with a lot of people, friends, friend’s friend, or if you catch up with somebody or you kind of send a friend request to the person, there is something that you can still build on to stay connected, and I think this is very helpful, so probably that is one place, where one should be really active at, if looking out for the job.

Is it the number of connections that matter (on LinkedIn)?

Not the number of connections, but yes, the profile speaks volume, like I said, so if I am looking at a profile on LinkedIn, so definitely I am going through it and reading it, but more also, I would be interested in reading the recommendations because, it is also a kind of a testimonial to your work. And also, if I would find a common connection, I wouldn’t mind picking up the phone and checking with that person as the reference to understand how the person in question is work wise, or otherwise, so I think it is very helpful.

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