Beyond the Ping Pong Table: Stronger Ways to Showcase Company Culture
Updated: Oct 15
Remember a few years ago when it seemed like everyone was obsessed with cool office designs and flashy perks? I felt like I was constantly seeing pictures and videos of offices with slides, crazy wall murals, ping pong tables, and, of course, Beer Fridays. I'll admit, I still love a good office design—probably because I've sat in way too many depressing offices—but what I'm concerned about is how many companies stop there. It's as if saying that because they have open floor plans and a dog-friendly policy that it's enough to have candidates clamoring to work there.
Maybe it did way back when, but the world of work is changing. Sure, candidates want great benefits and perks, but they're also looking for more meaning from their jobs and employers.
How many of you use pictures or messaging surrounding something like a ping pong table in your recruitment marketing? Is it listed as a perk on your career site? Do you have a picture of it splashed on your social media channels? That's fine, but stopping there doesn't create a memorable impression for candidates. Perks like this no longer have the "wow" factor.
Maybe they never did. Yikes.
I'm not saying to toss your ping pong table into the trash or to stop refilling to your kegerators, but I want you to think of these things as a tool to create a stronger narrative for your company culture story. Rather than pitching it as "this is the cool stuff that we have" think of it as "this is what these things represent."
Here's what I mean:
The ping pong table: rather than saying you have a fun game room, why not talk about how these spaces help bring people together? Maybe Sarah met Jake who took her on as a mentee and helped her grow her career from marketing to engineering.
Beer Fridays: sure, it's a nice way to socialize after a long week of hustling. But wouldn't it be a stronger story to showcase the fact that senior leadership, such as the CEO, takes time to hang out with the gang? That shows approachable leadership. A lot of people would kill to have that connection. (Bonus points for inclusivity if you incorporate nonalcoholic drinks for those who don't partake).
Catered lunches: I'm sure most people would enjoy saving a few bucks by getting offered free or discounted food on the regular, but what if you shared how leftover meals are given to a local homeless shelter? Or how employees are encouraged to donate a dollar or two for each meal to support the soup kitchen?
The perks you're promoting are still there, but now they pack more punch. Professional growth, authentic leadership, giving back. This showcases your culture in a stronger way that will resonate with candidates.
So, when thinking about your recruitment marketing, what stories can you find that bring these perks to life?
Need help with your employer branding or recruitment marketing strategy? Work with Harlow Creative Co. Learn more.
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