As an employer, the onus is on you to make sure your new hires feel they’re getting just what they signed up for when they start a new role. Marketing and digital candidates have expectations about the duties they’ll perform in their working day, their working hours, the company culture, and more, throughout the hiring process and in the early stages of their onboarding. However, when these expectations differ from the job reality, many new hires end up quitting, leading to high turnover and low retention rates for your business. 

Here are 5 steps you can take to manage expectations so that you’re both on the same page:

1. Design a pre-hiring process 

The pre-hiring stage of the recruitment process is the perfect place to start managing your new hires’ expectations. A couple of important success factors in a pre-hiring process are:

  • Using realistic job previews. Provide your candidates with previews of what the job is like and what life is like at your company. These could be something as simple as short videos or presentations that walk candidates through a day in the life of that role.
  • Talking about situational scenarios. For example, if your team has recently worked on a big campaign, discuss this with candidates, highlighting key areas such as the planning process through to execution. Doing this will help candidates see and go through the exact situations they could encounter on a day-to-day basis in the role they’re pursuing. They may also suggest a different way of approaching a campaign of that nature, or a new insight, which in turn will help you to assess their appropriateness for the role. 

If a candidate doesn’t like what they see in the pre-employment stage, they are likely to halt the process. On the other hand, a candidate who continues the process is more likely to match the job you’re offering.

2. Communicate the job well

To make sure your new hire’s day-to-day role matches their expectations, communication is key. There are several ways you can do this, such as: 

  • Writing a detailed job description. Your candidate will form their early expectations of the role when they read your job description. Make sure yours is detailed and clearly mentions the compensation you are offering, the day-to-day responsibilities expected of the hire, insights into the work environment, and more.
  • Continue explaining the role throughout the recruitment process. Don’t expect your candidates to understand everything about the job straight away. Keep providing details throughout the hiring process, as well as information on what you expect from the candidate and what they can expect from you.

3. Present your company culture transparently

Company culture is a huge reason for high early employee turnover. This could be because a company lacks a well-defined company culture, or because the real culture differs from what’s perceived from the outside or during the hiring process. 

You need to ensure your culture is being perceived in the right way and that it is clearly defined with the entire hiring team. Remember that there are candidates that will thrive in different environments, so explain your culture transparently so the candidates know what to expect.

With Marketing and Digital talent, candidates want to know that flexibility is on offer and that a company has clear guidelines around returning to work. Therefore, this is something you want to outline both on job descriptions and during interviews so that your new hire is 100% clear on your company’s policy around flexible working from the beginning of the hiring process.

💡 For more advice on what makes a good company culture, read our helpful article on the major elements in creating and maintaining a good company culture here

4. Showcase career paths 

If a new hire can't clearly see a path for career advancement, this may be a big trigger in making them want to leave early. You should make sure progression opportunities are clear before the onboarding process begins. Try asking questions about where candidates see themselves in five years' time; that way you can get insights into the career trajectory they want and how your company can help them. 

5. Help your new hires bond with their bosses or managers

Arrange hiring rounds where the candidates get to meet their future managers and bosses. That way, you’ll be able to see if the pair click or if you sense any compatibility issues. You also want to make sure your new hires get the time to connect with their managers before they start the job. If they don’t, you might risk them feeling a disconnect during the beginning stages of their new role. 

What next? 

For more insights into what top talent wants in the new working world, download our free eBook, Talent Trends: The Hiring Landscape in Marketing and Digital. Discover exactly what your business needs to do in order to attract the best marketing and digital candidates out there right now.