Employee spotlights are a critical part of any employer branding strategy. Think about it: Candidates are applying to spend 40 hours or more every week working for your company.
That’s a massive commitment. And the primary resources they have to base their decision on are a job description and a careers page. More and more, candidates expect companies to provide insider knowledge about what it’s actually like to work for them and what the company culture is really like.
This is where employee spotlights can help. They highlight the elements candidates are looking for and help employers showcase their workforce in a meaningful way.
This guide covers the benefits of employee spotlights, provides examples of employee spotlights and shows recruiters and HR professionals how to create their own.
What Is an Employee Spotlight?
An employee spotlight is content that highlights an employee’s history, what they do, their personality and why they enjoy their work.
This content can range from on-camera interviews and stylized videos to written content and blog posts. Whatever form it takes, many companies use employee spotlights for their social media, career pages and internal communication channels.
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Benefits of an Employee Spotlight
Not only are employee spotlights important for branding, they provide candidates with insight that will help them make a more informed decision as to whether or not your company and role is right for them. But the benefits don’t stop at what works for prospective candidates, companies can get a lot out of creating employee spotlights too.
Fosters a Culture of Recognition and Appreciation
Creating employee spotlights allows companies to reach out to some of the most valued employees and let them know their story is important to the company. Spotlights not only offer the opportunity to showcase an employee’s personality and journey, but also the specific work they do and why it’s beneficial. When employees are given the chance to talk about what they do, it can motivate them to bring their best work forward.
Employee spotlights also let employees know that hard work doesn’t go unnoticed by management. Spotlights can serve as a kind of recognition for good work, as companies want to highlight their most valuable and hardworking employees. Acknowledging the hard work of employees can increase employee engagement and allow the outside world to see the positive side of your company culture.
Builds Employer Branding Material
Building up employer branding is no small task for companies to undertake. But creating thoughtful employee spotlights can give candidates real and honest insight on what it’s like to work for your company. A well-done employee spotlight will give job seekers an idea of the benefits of working for a company as well as a look into who their future colleagues might be. Plus, employee spotlights can be repurposed as content across multiple platforms.
Creates Connection Among Employees
Employee spotlights can also help existing employees get to know one another. This is especially true for remote and hybrid workplaces, as well as larger companies. When employee spotlights are shared internally, like through a company-wide newsletter, employees can learn more about their coworkers than they might be able to in the day-to-day. Spotlights may spark casual conversations based on common interests that shift into long-term, collaborative work relationships.
How to Create an Employee Spotlight
1. Determine Which Employees to Feature
When deciding which employees to feature in your spotlight, you should consider having a range of employees from different departments and varying levels of seniority. Featuring everyone from entry-level employees to senior leadership gives candidates a full scope of the company and what it means to be an employee there.
It’s important to note that employees should consent and be excited to be featured in a spotlight. Choosing engaged employees will ensure that the spotlight captures the best parts of your company culture.
Remember that employee spotlights don’t have to be a one-and-done type of deal; it can be something the company does on a rolling basis to refresh its recruiting process and materials.
2. Chose an Interview Method
When you interview your employees, you can either meet in person, or you can ask them to respond to the questions in writing on their own time. There are perks to both. Conducting an in-person interview can be beneficial because you receive unfiltered responses from people in a more natural voice; however, because they are speaking and not writing, their responses will require a bit of editing and subsequent approval of edits.
On the other hand, if you have interviewees submit their responses in writing, they will have done most of the editing on their own, which can be helpful. But they may over-edit, causing their responses to sound scripted.
Choosing the right interview method will depend on the desired length and medium of your employee spotlight. If you want a quick quote for a social media post, you can probably informally ask your colleague for a few words. If you’re looking to share a longer blog post, you’ll want to schedule time on their calendar to discuss the goal of the article so they can tailor their responses as such.
And if you’re looking for any kind of sound bite that will be recorded on camera, you’ll want to give your interviewee plenty of time to prepare and rehearse their answers before you record.
Whatever method you choose, making sure you have the right equipment is an important part of the process. High-quality video and audio recording equipment as well as editing will be essential for any video content. While written content may only require a computer. Photography of your employees may also provide an extra boost for when you share your employee spotlight.
3. Put Together Employee Spotlight Questions
The purpose of an employee spotlight is to put a face to your company and to showcase first hand stories about what your workplace is like, so depending on the angle of the spotlight, you’ll want to ask questions that will help your employee highlight your company’s unique attributes in their own words.
For example, if you’re trying to spotlight your company’s culture, you can ask your employee: What team-building activities have you participated in at our company? How have you seen the company make its values a reality? What is your relationship with the rest of your team like?
Employee Spotlight Questions
- What has your experience been with our company culture?
- What is your team like?
- What’s the day-to-day of your role like?
- What parts of our mission do you connect with?
- What have been your biggest accomplishments on our team?
- Who are some of your biggest inspirations within the company?
- What kinds of resources have you taken advantage of while on our team?
- Which benefits are your favorite and why?
- What’s the most unique part about working here?
- How have you grown professionally while on our team?
Make sure your questions don’t just focus on your company, but provide space for your interviewee to talk about their personal experiences and share anecdotes that stand out to them.
4. Share the Employee Spotlight
Once you’ve gathered the material you need for your employee spotlight and edited it accordingly, it’s time for the fun part — sharing it with your employees and on your company’s social media channels. Many companies will post employee spotlights across their social platforms and have dedicated sections for the content on career or about us pages.
10 Employee Spotlight Examples
Now that we’ve covered the basics on how to create an employee spotlight, let’s check out some examples of how companies have highlighted their employees.
Yotpo’s Employee Spotlight Video Series
Yotpo, an e-commerce solutions provider, features a series of employee spotlight videos on its careers page. The spotlights provide background on each employee’s role, their time at the company and specific achievements. The video interviews ask questions about how they would describe the company, the friends employees make at work and their career path.
In-Depth Employee Profiles from Gravity Payments
Gravity Payments, a payment solutions platform designed for small businesses, features long-form employee profiles on its stories page. One profile tells the story of an employee who is a Naval veteran. The profile features pictures, insight on what it means to hire veterans and the employee’s personal journey from a military career to one in tech.
ezCater Calls Out Specific Work Achievements
EzCater is a catering platform for businesses to order and track spending for when they have in-office meals. Its culture blog features interviews with employees about projects they’re working on, like employee participation in ERGs, how they’re making the office more eco-friendly as well as the daily experience of being on the customer service team.
UiPath Showcases Its Interns in Employee Spotlight Blogs
UiPath knows it’s important to highlight all types of employees. One of the company’s blogs focused on interns and their impact, which provided insight into what projects they were working on and advice for what it takes to succeed within the company.
VideoAmp Includes Employee Spotlight Bios
VideoAmp’s about page features headshots and bios of employees across leadership roles in many different departments. These bios keep it short and sweet while still providing details on each employee’s role, career achievements and certifications as well as past work experience.
Kin + Carta Shares Employee Stories on Instagram
Sharing employee spotlights on Instagram can engage customers, employees and job candidates alike. Kin + Carta, a digital transformation consultancy, frequently shares employee spotlights on its Instagram. Posts range from quick Q&As with employees to in-depth interviews and celebrating promotions.
Cash App’s Creates Employee Stories on Its Voices Blog
Cash App features several interviews with employees on its stories page. Interviews range from employees speaking about what it means to be part of the LGBTQ community at the company to what it’s like to be a recent college graduate working there. Cash Apps’s blog also features articles on company culture and interview prep tips for potential candidates.
monday.com Showcases Employee Humor on its Youtube Channel
Monday.com, a workplace OS solutions provider, takes a non-traditional route when it comes to employee spotlights. Its monday makers Youtube channel is full of lighthearted videos of employees poking fun at working in the office and playing around with some make-believe product ideas not entirely related to its workplace software.
Cisco Meraki Offers a Company-Wide Employee Spotlight
Company-wide spotlight videos allow you to include sound bites from several different employees and share what your office and teams look like. Cisco Meraki does just that in this employer branding video. It not only provides an entirely different experience for candidates learning about your company, but it is content that can be shared across different platforms time and time again for future open roles. So, while it may take more effort to create, the return on investment is certainly worth your while.
Instagram Dedicated to Employee Spotlights Shows Off the Culture at Spreetail
No matter what type of employee spotlight you decide to create, make sure to promote your employee spotlights on your careers page, social media and career platforms. Spreetail takes full advantage of promotion opportunities with its Instagram dedicated to showing off its culture by sharing employee spotlights, interviews with new hires, videos of company events as well as first-day and last-day interviews with interns.
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