The Human Resource (HR) position bears ample similarity with the marketing role. Our Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) comparably covers attraction, retention, satisfaction, branding, value creation, and more. But these are not simple tasks. You would realize that human resource management is the internal reflection of marketing. “Employees” are the internal reflections of “customers.” Thus, the human resource department is to the organization’s employees’ what marketing also is an organizations’ reach/customers. Just as the marketing unit initiates and implement strategies to attract and retain the right customers, inspire customer satisfaction and corporate identity, human resource is also hugely tasked with the responsibility to attract and retain the right employees, inspire employee satisfaction and positive perceptions. Therefore, seeing HR as a Marketer will imply a lot of things.
- Adaptability: Just as customer needs change, so do employees’ needs. Employee motivation is a continuous process and must be handled with flexibility. Pay attention to demographics; age, marital status, family, health, education, gender, etc. greatly affect differences in needs. What is the pattern you find amongst your employees? What is the common goal people in their age bracket? How are you trying to help them reach their career and personal aspirations?
- Competition: The labour market is just as competitive as the commodity market. Make sure you are giving your employees the best price (i.e., salary) or at least, the competitive price. Be conscious of the fact that there are thousands more companies running after your workforce. If you value them, keep them satisfied.
- Orientation: “Customer is King” is the marketing philosophy often practiced showing the invaluable role of customer to the business. Well, doesn’t this also mean that your “employee is king?”. Respect, honour and reward these people that contribute their time, efforts, and resources to achieve your goals (which they have owned).
- Consideration: “The customer is always right’, that is another saying. So, will you agree that the “employee is always right” also? Do you listen to your employees? They may not always say what pleases you but consider those suggestions, those reasons for underperformance, lateness, or absenteeism. Just as you serve your customers, can you serve your employees? -with professionalism, positivity, and respect.
- Attraction: Customers are attracted to the best deals; your employees are too. Be the best or lose them to the best. Better still, make them the best to make you the best.
- Retention: The switching cost of leaving a job a person does not like is little or nothing. If you ever fear that your employees will leave you, well soon they will. That fearful feeling is a hint that you are not doing something right. As HR practitioners, we are employed to do our best and that best is a collective effort to enrich our most “valuable asset” according to Armstrong -our people.
In summary, employees are themselves becoming influential marketers of their companies. Therefore, it makes it difficult sometimes to think of certain people without thinking about their company even after they leave.
As a final statement, “make your people grow. Care for the total person (soul, body, spirit). You employed a total person, not a brainy organ alone.”
Elizabeth is a certified Assc. HR Practitioner, Harvard University HPAIR Scholar, Writer and Public Speaker. https://www.linkedin.com/in/elizabeth-ewudiwa-813b8b145/