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Oct 2015

Managing a business in an increasingly digital age can be daunting, especially if you are unsure of how to hire the right team members. At FutureMarketer, we use our S.T.E.M. approach to guide clients on recruiting digital marketing talent. Can you benefit from this approach? Well, if you’re a leader who’s interested in hiring the best digital talent for your organisation, S.T.E.M. may be the perfect starting point.

Common digital marketing hiring challenges  

In our experience, we have noticed the following shortcomings when it comes to hiring digital talent:

  1. Companies aren’t sure of how to go about digital transformation, which means they’re not sure who to hire to execute this process
  2. Many companies hire people who have the word ‘digital’ in their CV’s rather than understanding what digital skills they actually require the candidate to possess. Sometimes, companies use their limited (and possibly incorrect) understanding of digital jargon and end up miscommunicating job requirements
  3. There is often a rather unrealistic expectation that any ‘digital’ person will be able to execute and manage all things digital (from CRM and e-commerce to search and social – and everything in between)
  4. This often leads to costly mistakes with digital hires; hires that are unfortunately set-up to fail

How can we solve this problem?

Chalking out the job responsibilities of your digital marketing talent may seem difficult, but don’t fret. We’ve mapped out an approach that simplifies the task of describing what your digital needs are – using our S.T.E.M. framework.  The best part about this framework? As a business leader or hiring manager, you don’t need to be a digital guru to use S.T.E.M. – in fact, we encourage using as little digital jargon as possible.

Our S.T.E.M. approach to defining digital marketing roles and responsibilities

The purpose of this approach is simple: it is to define the digital marketing job the person is being hired to do in four aspects:

What the person will have to:

  • Sell
  • Think
  • Execute and
  • Manage

S = Sell

What are the selling aspects of this job? At first, a lot of hiring managers think, ‘This is not a sales job at all.’ But we urge you to think a bit more. When it comes to digital initiatives, there is invariably some form of selling – whether it is selling your company’s digital vision, selling digital marketing execution ideas or selling transformation plans for the business. This selling could be to internal stakeholders (e.g. leadership teams, sales teams, peer groups, customer service) or external stakeholders (e.g. your company’s customers, consumers or partners). Figuring this out in advance will help you hire a candidate with the experience and attitude you require.

T = Think

What are the thinking aspects of your new digital hire’s role? This person may have to think strategically about how digital marketing will meet a certain business objective. Alternatively, he may have to think practically about the digital plan approach and how to execute it. The new digital marketing hire may even have to use his analytical skills to think of a way to measure the effectiveness of digital campaigns. So think about what the hire will have to think about…

E = Execute

What will your new digital marketing hire’s deliverables be? What does this person have to directly execute on his own?  Perhaps you need your hire to be directly responsible for community management on social media or tracking ROI metrics. What about analytics? Your new digital hire may have to actively set up, manage and interpret insights from campaigns, or be directly responsible for creating the dashboard that the leadership team sees. This focus on execution will help you streamline expectations and KPIs for your new digital hire.

M = Manage

Once you’ve outlined the executional responsibilities of your new digital hire, turn your attention to what he will have to oversee rather than execute directly.

Ask yourself:

  • What is the management scope of my new hire?
  • What work will he be managing?
  • Who will he have to manage to get this work done?

Perhaps you require talent to manage internal resources, external stakeholders or even specific project outcomes and deliverables. As you review applications, conduct reference checks, initiate phone screenings and map out your interview structure, keep an eye on the management-related skills that will contribute towards digital transformation in the long run.

S.T.E.M. Helps You Fill in Your Talent Gaps

At FutureMarketer, we want to help you clarify the skills you actually need for your business rather than the skills you think you need. We’re keen to help you minimise the talent expectation gap, as well as the gap between your company’s current digital capabilities and goals.

We hope the S.T.E.M. approach will help you become a bit more future-ready. It allows you to be logical and straightforward, avoiding any chances of getting lost in the technical language that is widely used amongst digital recruiters today.

Ready to Grow Your Digital Marketing Team?

If you want hands-on experience of our S.T.E.M. approach to hiring, you may be interested in our digital transformation course. During this course, you will learn which areas of your recruiting process can be made more systematic and effective. For more details on that, stay tuned for our next article.

Digital Marketing - FutureMarketer
Taru Jain
Taru Jain
[email protected]

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