FAKE NEWS: Are recruiters protecting themselves?

For recruiters, the impact of “fake news” on business, as James Staunton, Partner, Instinctif Partners explains, can be biting if they aren’t protecting their brand in an era of misinformation.

The problem is something that employees and recruiters are worried about: according to a recent Instinctif Partners whitepaper, almost half of British staffers feel their employer should be concerned with the effect of “fake news” on their brand.

To help combat the effects, Instinctif Partners highlight the need for recruiters to “build relationships with the media” and not just treat their conversations with journalists as they would when building content for an in-house magazine. 

With 57% of surveyed employees more likely to read news that gave both sides of the story, this is crucial to maintain brand exposure in outlets that readers are likely to engage with.

And, as Staunton explains, recruiters and recruitment leaders should be engaging their social media channels and websites to ensure they’re maintaining and building their personal brand.

This will help combat what Staunton calls “bad news”. If a business brand, or the rec industry as a whole, gets linked to negative stories, a steady stream of content – as well as having journalist contacts – will help get out good news in mitigation.

Staunton offers a stark warning though: “A word of warning.  Blogs [and content] sound as though they’re easy to do.  To an extent, they are – but the devil is in the detail.  For instance, when we took over the blogging for one multi-brand recruiter, we doubled average shares from 26 per post to 52.  A bit of professionalism takes you a long way.”

However, recruitment often has to deal with unfair stereotyping. As Staunton sets out, “bad news has a long shelf life.” One recruiter found this out the hard way.

And, the BBC’s reportage of John Phillips, the rec conman targeting candidates, had an effect on the entire industry prompting Keither Rosser, Chair of Safer Jobs and a Member of Recruitment Grapevine’s Advisory Board to set-up a commission to reassure jobseekers and clients.

He said: “This is designed to give reassurance to the public when using job boards or recruitment companies and to showcase those organisations taking job seeker welfare seriously. The Principles are also supported by DWP, BEIS, and the Metropolitan Police and there is no cost to recruiters and job boards partnering with Safer Jobs.”

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