Computers and artificial intelligence have come along at an exponential rate over the past few decades, from being regarded as oversized adding machines to the point where they have played integral roles in some legitimately creative endeavours.
Effective talent management in one country is challenging enough for any modern marketer, but add 60 different countries and 29 languages, and it becomes no mean feat.
Indeed’s senior vice-president of marketing, Paul D’Arcy speaks to CMO about what it takes to manage a company’s global marketing talent while maintaining a consistent brand.
One global brand, multiple marketing talent
D’Arcy’s talent management portfolio involves overseeing four large marketing streams, managing online marketing focusing on job seekers, employer marketing targeted at businesses looking for talent, a corporate marketing team focusing on driving awareness as well as business development and alliances.
“There are 14 different sections within marketing, including consumer marketing, brand, social media and B2B marketing,” he said. “We also have a team of economists that provides labour data, we do over 100 events globally every year, so we deal with a pretty broad range of things.”
Given the breadth of marketing talent in the organisation, D'Arcy said his emphasis is on ensuring all marketing functions know the company should be viewed as one global brand.
“For us at Indeed, the role of marketing is to better fulfil our company’s mission, which is to help people get jobs,” he said. “The challenge for us is that work is something really local, and it’s so woven into a country’s cultural fabric.”
Transparency and collaboration
Unlike other companies that closely guard creative development, D’Arcy said Indeed is as open as possible to keep marketing talent better informed and involved in strategy.
“We believe in absolute transparency in our marketing strategies, so all our relevant documents are available in one place for all our marketing staff to see anytime,” he said. “This way we can encourage feedback and collaboration from all parts of the organisation, which we think makes us much more relevant – especially when we’re getting feedback from Indeed employees across so many different countries.”
D’Arcy also encourages each marketing function across countries not to be silos, but to collaborate closely with the other business functions.
“We believe our best marketing work comes forward when we embed with other teams,” he explained. “We put our marketers together with all of the teams and sit with software engineers, our quality assurance people, product management teams and sales people all around the world. That way we try to ensure marketers stay as closely connected with the business as possible.”
According to D’Arcy, the organisation also values the need to leverage a diverse pool of marketing skills and talent in order to drive innovation and ideas.
“We have a lot of creatives within our organisation, but a quarter can actually code,” he claimed. “We think that’s a really important component of today’s marketing mix.
“We also blend our in-house talent with a network of freelancers and agency relationships that come in to collaborate with us and brainstorm ideas, because we want input from as many different people with different experiences and skills as much as possible.”
D’Arcy was recently instrumental to the company's ‘Campaign Lab’ based in Dublin, where project managers, creatives and designers join forces to test ad campaigns in order to find the optimum format.
“Part of our mission in our marketing function is to do as few things as we can, but do them to scale,” he said. “The Campaign Lab is all about continuous experiments; it is our engine for learning and finding new things to scale in marketing. So we try different approaches across different media channels and we run experiments all over the world.”
Keeping training and development consistent
D’Arcy said the key to keeping marketing talent consistent at Indeed is to keep it very clear what its strategy is and what its approach to marketing is, so it is easy for everyone to understand.
“We also ensure our marketing talent focus on the data, test different things and have the freedom to fail,” he said.
Marketers also have a full day of on-boarding, which a marketing executive also commits to every month.
“This helps new marketing talent to really understand our approach,” he said. “We also have weekly meetings where we go over key initiatives which are open to anyone in marketing.
“We try to have an open community of marketers as much as possible and give everyone access to information, plus be in the room when we’re having significant discussions. Part of this is about training and part of it is about open lines of communication and understanding.”