How Employee Stories Can Ignite Your Sales Recruitment Marketing

I probably don’t need to tell you how competitive modern sales recruiting is. Companies are constantly jockeying for position to find top industry talent and maintain an edge over other brands. A big part of doing that successfully is staying creative with sales recruitment marketing, continually looking for new ways to appeal to high-level salespeople and motivate them to apply. 

One trend that’s emerged as of late is employee stories, which is a simple yet potent strategy when executed correctly. In this post, I’ll explain what employee stories are and why they work. I’ll also include real-life examples to see what employee stories look like in action so you’ll know how to inject them into your sales recruitment marketing to win over top candidates

Let’s jump right in. 

What Exactly Are Employee Stories?

Simply put, they’re “digital stories narrated through videos and blogs about existing workers to instill an emotional connection with an organization.” In the context of sales recruiting, employee stories involve a current rep explaining what it’s like working for a company, what they enjoy about it, what the culture is like, and so on. The purpose is to give job seekers a quick overview of what a salesperson’s experience has been like and validate your company as being one they want to work for.  

There are several directions you can take in terms of employee story types, but some common formats include:

  • What attracted an employee to your company and why they’ve chosen to stick with you
  • An overview of their role and responsibilities
  • A day in the life video
  • Career development that’s taken place with your company

For an in-depth overview of the different types of employee stories, I suggest checking out this guide

Why Are Employee Stories Helpful?

There are two main reasons. First, they help give job seekers a clear idea of what it’s truly like to work for you. Research from LinkedIn found the biggest issue candidates have when searching for a job is “not knowing what it’s like to work at an organization.”

Sure they can get a basic idea from the job description, your website, social media, etc. But that doesn’t always paint the whole picture. Employee stories instantly connect the dots and give candidates an overarching perspective of what it would really be like to work for you because they’re hearing it straight from the horse’s mouth. 

Second, employee stories are perfect for building trust. Brands obviously want to portray themselves in the best light, so of course they’re going to say their company is a great place to work and their culture is amazing. Not every candidate, however, is going to take it at face value. But using this type of medium can quickly bridge the trust gap. In fact, the same LinkedIn study found that candidates are 3x more likely to trust a company’s employees to provide accurate information than the company itself. 

I like how Todd Kunsman, director of marketing at EveryoneSocial, frames it with this quote. 

“Think of this way: the less conflict of interest there is (or the more personal risk there is), the more credible and authentic the story — hence the value of employee stories. Employees have their skin in the game, but a faceless brand name can promote itself devoid of risk.” 

So by correctly using employee stories, you can quickly convey what it’s really like to work for your company and leverage actual employee testimonies to establish instant trust. And that can go a long way in gaining the edge in recruiting.

Two Real-Life Examples

To better help you see how today’s top brands are using employee stories, I’d like to share two real-life examples. The first is from Brandwatch, a SaaS analytics platform that focuses on digital consumer intelligence. On their “Careers” page, the first thing candidates see is this section, featuring a captivating employee story in the form of a video. 

In it, one of their employees, Ben Ellis, talks about:

  • How long he’s been with Brandwatch
  • Why he loves working there, citing specific reasons
  • How the company has invested in his personal development
  • How he receives support from company leaders
  • How the company is very inclusive

It’s just under 2 ½ minutes long, but it includes everything candidates need to know to get a sense of what working for Brandwatch is like. You can see the entire video for yourself here

The second example comes from Salesforce where they’ve gone so far as to create a dedicated employee stories page on their website called “Get to Know Us.”

Here candidates can find a ton of great information featuring current staff, including this long time employee Alan Weibel. 

In it, Alan explains why he chose to join Salesforce, what his role is, his proudest moment at the company, and much more. 

The post is a fun, personal way to get candidates up-to-speed and really injects Alan’s personality into it. And after reading it, especially this part about the amazing culture, I can only imagine that someone’s interest in working for Salesforce would skyrocket. 

So looking at examples like these, it’s apparent how big of an impact employee stories can have. 

Humanizing Your Brand with Employee Stories

Standing out is vital with modern sales recruiting. And this is one of the newer techniques that I personally love. By featuring actual employees and getting their personal accounts, you can swiftly articulate what it’s like working for your company and build that all important sense of trust. 

Find out how HireDNA can help you find A+ salespeople by using cutting-edge technology like intelligent matching and science-based assessments. 92% of those recommended reach the top of the sales force within a year. 

How Continuous Recruitment Can Reduce Your Time-to-Hire and Cost-Per-Hire

It takes, on average, 36 days to fill a position. So, if for whatever reason one of your salespeople quits, their position may easily sit vacant for over a month. All the while the collective performance of your sales team will likely suffer because you don’t have adequate manpower to cover the workload. 

This, in turn, can result in longer lead response times, lost sales opportunities, staff burnout, diminished profitability, and more. 

But what if there was a straightforward way to resolve this problem, while reducing both your time-to-hire as well as your cost-per-hire? Enter continuous recruitment. 

What is Continuous Recruitment?

Simply put, it’s making the process of searching for talented salespeople a part of everyday operations. Rather than only recruiting when a position is vacant and your staffing needs are high, you’re always on the lookout for quality candidates. It’s a proactive approach where you’re on the offense rather than the defense when hiring. 

Why is Continuous Recruitment Important?

As I just mentioned, it usually takes over a month to find a new salesperson. And that doesn’t include other steps like training and onboarding, which take even longer. Not to mention, studies have found it takes most salespeople around 9 months to become fully competent to perform and 15 months to be a top performer. 

When you put that all together, it can take an incredibly long time to truly get a new salesperson in “the groove.” But by taking a proactive stance with continuous recruitment, you can attract top candidates year-round so you’re not left scrambling at the last minute if a key sales rep parts ways with your company unexpectedly. 

Val Matta of The Huffington Post articulates it perfectly with this quote. “Having and leaving open vacancies can have a big impact on a company, costing time and money and impacting current employees in a negative way. Although it may seem like overkill, a company that continuously recruits builds what is called a ‘talent pipeline,’ or a community of qualified, interested candidates with the skills and experience to meet your organization’s unique needs.”

In turn, this can have a massively positive impact on your company, which brings me to my next point. 

How Effective is It?

Continuous recruitment offers several benefits. But there are two that stand out above all others — increased hiring efficiency and lower cost. According to research, “55% of those who continuously recruit throughout the year say this reduces their time-to-hire and 42% say it reduces their cost-per-hire.” 

Instead of having to wait over a month to find a new salesperson, you can seamlessly bring quality talent on board and avoid having any lengthy gaps. That way you don’t have to deal with the stress and headaches of having to find a replacement on short notice. 

And let’s be honest. You’re far more likely to make good hiring decisions when you’re not rushed. While “desperate situations yield the quickest results,” as Michael Scott of The Office would put it, it’s not a place you want to be at when trying to find great sales talent. In fact it can be quite detrimental. 

However, having a talent pipeline dramatically increases your chances of having an A+ sales team at all times, regardless of what curveballs come your way. “Instead of feeling rushed to find and hire someone, you can choose from a pool of applicants you already know are a strong fit,” Matta adds. 

And this has arguably never been more important than it is today with the widespread talent shortages that are happening in sales. With younger talent being more reluctant to get into sales, many companies are struggling to assemble qualified sales teams. While continuous recruitment can’t ensure you never have any issues, it can go a long way in preventing a talent shortage from affecting your business. 

In terms of reducing cost-per-hire, the fact that 42% of companies say continuous recruitment has a noticeable impact is highly encouraging. Given that hiring a salesperson typically costs around $15,000, plus an additional $20,000 training, being able to cut down on this can be a huge help for boosting your overall profitability. 

Getting the Competition Edge

Here’s what I found really interesting. Despite the immense benefits of continuous recruitment, not many companies currently use it — only 38%. It seems that many businesses still have the antiquated notion that you only need to recruit when there’s a vacant position. But as I mentioned before, in today’s ultra-competitive landscape, it pays to have a talent pool to tap into before you actually need it. 

By leveraging continuous recruitment, you’re basically putting yourself ahead of nearly two-thirds of the competition and ensuring you have a sustainable team of top sales professionals ready to roll. So if you’re looking for a proven way to win the talent war, this is an effective way to do it, and it can really strengthen your brand identity over time. 

Being Proactive With Your Recruiting

The traditional mindset for many sales recruiters has been to wait to hire until a position becomes vacant. But this isn’t usually the best way to go about it. In fact, it can be downright toxic to your sales team and hurt your bottom line because it increases both your time-to-hire and cost-per-hire — neither of which are ideal. 

As more and more companies are finding, continuous recruitment can be a true gamechanger, with 55% saying it reduces their time-to-hire and 42% saying it reduces their cost-per-hire. So this is definitely a strategy to consider and can be a valuable arrow in your quiver. 

Want to slash your hiring time in half and find pre-screened, high-octane salespeople who are interview-ready? See how HireDNA can help by sourcing top talent and using intelligent matching and science-based assessments. 

What’s Your UVP? How to Articulate Why Top Talent Should Choose Your Company.

Defined by Unbounce as “a clear statement that describes the benefit of your offer and what distinguishes you from the competition,” a unique value proposition (UVP) is one of the most important elements in business. Typically, we think of it in a consumer context where you use your UVP to entice leads into engaging with your brand, checking out your offer, and ultimately buying. 

At HireDNA, for example, our UVP is “Hire Better Sales Talent, Faster.”

It’s short, sweet, and to the point. And I’d like to think it succinctly encapsulates why companies looking to recruit elite sales reps would want to choose us over anyone else. 

But a UVP can also apply to recruiting where you clearly articulate why top talent would want to work for you versus a similar brand. For this post, I’ll explain the ins and outs of creating a UVP for recruiting so you’re able to reel in more A+ salespeople and stand out from the competition. 

The Formula

While there’s a lot that goes into crafting a killer UVP, you can boil it down to one simple formula, which Social Impact Architects summarizes as follows:

What your job seeker needs and cares about 


What you do really well

What your competition does well 


Your UVP

Here’s what that looks like visually. 

At the end of the day, defining your UVP involves pinpointing exactly what top talent cares about (e.g. finding a rewarding career where they can leverage their skill set and grow), what your brand excels at (e.g. you’re an industry leader and have an employee-first, innovative culture), and what distinguishes you from the competition (e.g. you offer outstanding benefits that others don’t).

Although, admittedly, easier said than done, and it takes some time and refining to perfectly nail your UVP, the formula is really quite simple. I recommend doing some brainstorming, writing down each of these three elements, and playing around with them until you come up with a UVP that fully articulates why top talent should choose your company. 

Simple Advice for Success

Perhaps the easiest way to ensure you hit the mark is to put yourself in the shoes of the talent you’re looking to recruit. Think about:

  • What would appeal to them when considering which company to work for
  • What’s most important to them
  • What would make them choose your brand over a competitor 

I think many companies get themselves in trouble because they don’t fully look at things from the talent’s point of view. As a result, their UVP ends up being generic and falls flat. So I can’t stress enough the importance of getting into this headspace, as it should provide clarity on how to appeal to top candidates in your industry.

A Real-Life Example

To help you better wrap your head around the UVP creation process, let’s look at a company that’s knocked it out of the ballpark — Brandwatch. They’re a digital consumer intelligence company that analyzes billions of online conversations and delivers reliable insights to help businesses understand their consumers and competitors. 

Brandwatch has a dedicated “Careers” page on their website and features their UVP front and center. It’s simply “Powered by you,” which speaks to their employees being the backbone of their organization. 

This has a very warm, welcoming feel to it, and Brandwatch elaborates with these two concise but very well-worded paragraphs below. 

The first paragraph instantly lets job seekers know:

  • The success of Brandwatch hinges on their employees
  • Brandwatch values their employees
  • Brandwatch is committed to creating a positive and supportive work environment

I don’t know about you, but I find that super appealing. If I was a talented salesperson looking for a potential company to work for, Brandwatch would definitely grab my attention. 

And the second paragraph goes into a bit more depth as to the perks of working with Brandwatch over competitors. More specifically, they let candidates know they offer flexible scheduling, personal development, and a strong community-focused culture. Brandwatch also clearly states they have remote working opportunities — something that’s huge in our current climate. 

So to recap, Brandwatch’s UVP zeroes in on their brand being employee-centric, while offering plenty of flexibility and development opportunities. It’s very straightforward, but does a brilliant job of conveying what Brandwatch is all about. 

And to drive that message home even further, they also feature testimonials from actual employees, which is a nice touch. There’s a video at the top of the page.

There’s a carousel here. 

And there’s also a section entitled “Committed to growth” where Brandwatch goes into even more detail about their dedication to empowering team members to learn, thrive, and evolve, highlights their key benefits, and includes yet another high-powered testimonial.

Put that all together, and it’s easy to see why so many talented salespeople are eager to work with Brandwatch. Their UVP is next level, and their “Careers” page does an excellent job at fully unpacking it. And that’s exactly what you want to go for when approaching your own UVP. 

Winning the Talent War

Hiring talented salespeople is integral to the success of your company. Unfortunately, we’re living in an age where that’s become increasingly hard to do. The combination of a high demand for salespeople and a reluctance of younger talent to get into this profession has made it difficult for many brands to find elite reps. 

But, as we’ve just learned, creating a rock solid UVP can go a long way in recruiting and is a key ingredient in piquing the interest of rockstar reps. 

Looking to fill your pipeline with qualified sales candidates? See how HireDNA can help you build a stronger sales team and fill open positions faster.