Exploring the Relationship Between Human Resources and Marketing

Understanding the connection between Human Resources (HR) and Marketing is essential when communicating the value of joining an organization. On a recent Westchester Human Resource Management Association Webinar, RealHR Consultant, Conor Hughes, discussed strategies for communicating an employer’s brand and improving a candidate’s experience throughout the recruitment process. Insights were focused on these five HR functions: 

  1. Recruiting & Applicant Tracking Systems
  2. Job Postings
  3. Company Culture & Employer Branding
  4. Benefits Description 
  5. Engagement & Communication

Recruiting & Applicant Tracking Systems

In Conor’s view, , recruiting and the use of an Applicant Tracking Systems (ATS) can be looked at as the beginning of a sales funnel process. Candidates will enter the funnel during the recruitment phase and the ultimate goal is to convert candidates into employees. A candidate’s first impression starts here

What is your application process like? Is it easy to flow through from the candidate’s perspective? 

“The end goal is to make it as easy as possible to expand your candidate pool.”

HR has the opportunity to work in conjunction with marketing, to analyze open and click-through rates to determine the success of the application process. Are candidates starting an application and not finishing? Why might that be? Are there any redundancies in the information being requested? Marketing can help HR sort through where the stop gaps are within the process. 

Job Postings

Job postings should provide candidates with as much information about the role and the company before they apply. Think through what a candidate might want to know – what is the reporting structure? Work schedule? Benefit offerings? A job posting should go beyond the primary duties and responsibilities that are typically outlined in the job description.

How can Marketing help? According to Conor, by going a step further and analyzing whether the posting is relevant based on current market trends and adjusting the posting depending on which social media platform an organization is advertising on. 

Company Culture & Employer Branding

To attract candidates, your company culture and employer brand should be front and center. Your website, for example, can be viewed as a direct representation of your company’s inclusivity values. Beyond that, Conor posed some questions to consider:  

  • Does your branding reflect a culture that trends with generational expectations? 
  • Does the organization’s reputation lend itself to being a place where people want to work?

Benefits Descriptions

A clear description of benefits is not only a marketing tool during a candidate’s recruitment process, leads to greater transparency and increased retention. A single reference point for all benefits minimizes potential questions during the application process and beyond. Are your benefits targeting the type of candidate that you want to attract? Again, are your benefits on trend with generational expectations?

Engagement & Communication

Engagement and communication are incredibly important elements during a candidate’s recruitment process, but according to Conor, this  means anticipating the candidate’s questions and ensuring that the answers are accessible and easy to  understand. One suggestion is to create an interactive website where candidates can go to get answers to their questions. 

Pro tip: embed links for the candidate experience right on your website – this provides legitimacy to any additional resources that you’re hoping to share with prospective candidates.

How can Marketing help? By analyzing how your workforce communicates. Utilizing various methods of communication can appeal to various types of learners to include:  visual , auditory,kinesthetic, and reading/writing learners.  

When you have the opportunity to appeal to employees in various ways – take it. Promote an inclusive environment and maximize engagement levels. 


There is significant value to an organization when HR and Marketing work in tandem. The ability to leverage the perspective and skill of cross-functional teams and approach the recruitment life cycle creatively will directly impact the ability to recruit, develop and retain top talent. 

Westchester Human Resource Management Association is an affiliate of the Society for Human Resource Management.