Photo: Missouri CIO Dan Ross was an early adopter of Web 2.0, recruiting IT staff on Second Life

Despite the fact that social networks and software are significantly changing organizations' marketing and Web strategies, relatively few human resources (HR) organizations have grasped the effect that they have on the employer brand, according to Gartner Inc.

It is essential that organizations understand how social software is altering the recruitment landscape and adapt recruiting strategies and systems accordingly. Gartner analysts said that by 2011, organizations that do not manage their employer brands effectively will fail to attract key talent.

"The employer brand has recently become a significant component of human capital management (HCM) strategy," said Thomas Otter, research director at Gartner. "Many HR leaders have instigated employer branding projects. This isn't simply a fancy new name for recruitment advertising, but a broad strategy to leverage the intangible values of the organization to improve retention, employee satisfaction and performance."

Organizations are investing significantly in adopting marketing and sales strategies for social software, and Gartner predicts that by 2010, more than 60 percent of Fortune 1000 companies with Web sites will have some form of community that can be used for marketing purposes. Although many organizations hasten to adopt and exploit social computing in marketing, sales and customer support roles, Gartner has found that HR tends to lag behind.


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