7 ways to turn employees into your best brand advocates

More qualified people will want to work for you if they hear current employees signing your praises.

Today, the job of the recruiting department is somewhat of a general business role. Recruiters have to be astute in every facet of the business.

Marketing is a skill that a progressive recruiting department must know. As a recruiter, you are no longer just recruiting for the marketing department; you are marketing your company in order to attract and retain top talent.

You must market your brand as an employer, and this starts on the inside of your organization. It doesn’t do much good if recruiters know your company is an employer of choice, but nobody on the inside knows.

Once you market your key messages inside your organization, your employees will speak with that same vernacular and, hopefully, recruit great candidates along the way.

To start, use tools such as an intranet or employee benefit portal to communicate key messages. From there, brand some of your key messages on things like trade-show giveaways, posters within your building, email tags, and on the career page of your website.

The important thing is to make it a company-wide effort. Every interaction between your company and the outside world is a potential recruiting opportunity.

How can your company be an employer of choice? Here are seven ways to promote your company from the inside out.

1. Use “best of” titles.

Let people know if your company is one of the best companies to work for or the fastest growing company. List these accreditations on your intranet, Facebook page, LinkedIn page, and in email signatures. This information should be well known to your employees so they can easily share it when they explain to people what they do and who they work for.

2. Take pride in employee development.

At the end of each fiscal year, put together a short summary that shows how many employees—include the percent—the company promoted. Track this year after year and regularly announce the results.

Post this information on your intranet and career pages. Job applicants like to know employee development is important to your company and that they won’t get stuck in a dead-end job.

3. Recognize employee milestones.

Highlight employees who reach milestone anniversaries, and post their stories on the intranet so employees can see them and have something to look forward to.

4. Reward employee achievements.

Have any of your employees received awards in their field, published articles, or received patents? If so, make a big deal about it on the intranet as well as on your career portal. This tells job applicants you will recognize them for their personal achievements and contributions.

It would be even better if you could convince HR to offer a bonus for these achievements.

5. Offer competitive compensation.

If your company offers salaries or benefits that are better than other companies in your industry, announce it. Let people know you research this information every year, and that your goal is to stay above the average to attract and retain the best talent.

If this works for your company, say so. Your employees will remember this when a recruiter calls on them or when their friends ask if their company pays well.

6. Let people know you’re a green company.

Work with your sustainability or energy management department to find out what your company does to reduce its carbon footprint. If it does a better job than other employers in your industry, let your employees know. A large number of employees are concerned about sustainability and would prefer to work for a company that promotes sustainable practices.

7. Share employee stories.

Get quotes from employees on why they like working for the company, and use those quotes to form branding messages. Make your pitch as human and emotive as possible. Keep in mind that the best messages are stories, not just quotes.

The bottom line is if you give your employees consistent branding messages, they will remember them. If every employee in your company understands the value of employment branding and knows the company’s pitch, your recruiting efforts will be easier.

If your company’s goal is to land the top talent in your market, the recruiting department can’t do all the heavy lifting. The company, from the inside out, needs to be on point and on message. But most importantly, all employees need to be inspired to follow the company’s vision and advance its image.

A version of this article originally appeared on Recruiter.com. Recruiter.com offers users recruitment and career advice, job search connections, and tools for career management.

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