Maggie BleharMarch 01, 2022
Topics: Customer Stories

Johnsonville's Recruiter Handbook for Hyper Hiring

What will it take for organizations to hire and retain top talent in a world that has changed drastically over the past two years? America’s favorite sausage brand, Johnsonville, has the answer.

As businesses reopened after the pandemic’s initial lockdown, Johnsonville faced a common challenge — finding best-fit candidates for their 200+ open positions. A tight labor market with low applications only compounded the problem.

Johnsonville’s Tim Roose, MIS Business Partner, shared his team's solution to bring people back into the workforce while also promoting the Johnsonville brand. By adopting Phenom’s Talent Experience Management (TXM) platform, they were able to transform their recruiting and retention strategies using AI technology, resulting in super-efficient hyper hiring.

Follow along with Roose as he shares Johnsonville’s story in the video below, or continue reading for highlights.

Why Phenom?

What started in 1945 as a small, family-owned business has since grown to a company of over 2,000 employees. The “family” aspect of Johnsonville hasn’t changed, however. They call their managers “coaches” and their employees “members,” Roose explained. “Our members are put first. We give our members every opportunity to grow, to be successful, to speak up, to be part of the organization.”

In order to maintain that vision, however, Roose and his team needed some help. Adopting a smart AI platform, one that could attract and retain talented members as well as report analytics to the team, allowed them to understand what was and wasn’t working with their recruitment strategy.

A huge benefit? The ability to track and engage passive candidates. Previously, once candidates left Johnsonville’s career site, “we lost them altogether. We didn’t have that link to that candidate to go back if a new position [or] new career opportunity showed up.”

With Phenom, “Now we do.”

Seamless ATS Integration

What’s one of Johsonville’s favorite aspects of the AI platform? Synchronicity.

The seamless ATS integration factor “was a huge win for us,” Roose said frankly. The ability to link SAP Success Factors to Phenom extinguished the need for recruiters to manually transfer data back and forth, something they were doing multiple times a day prior to adopting TXM.

“Our recruiters are comfortable [now],” Roose explained. The synchronicity between SAP and Phenom has totally streamlined the process, freeing up time for recruiters to move through their day-to-day unburdened.

Passive Lead Captures

Roose also shared just how successful the passive lead capture feature for proactive candidate outreach has been. As mentioned, Johnsonville was losing potential candidates who visited their site but didn’t – or couldn’t – find what they were looking for.

Now, with AI to capture those leads, their recruiters can:

  • Engage with potential candidates
  • Build candidate relationships
  • Utilize content to promote the organization
  • Begin initial interactions using the career site chatbot

“This is a big win for us,” Roose explained. “In the few months that we’ve been live, we’ve already had the capability [and] the excitement of reaching out to members that hadn’t originally put that application in. But once we reached out directly, they were moved to put the application in and start the process.”

Related: High Volume Hiring Lessons from a Retail Giant

Multilingual Career Site

Johnsonville is a global company, with 1,500 international members, 2 international manufacturing facilities, and products in over 40 countries. With such a global presence, it only makes sense that their career site reflects the people who work there.

Currently in the process of creating a Spanish subtenant for their workforce, Roose explained that launching multilingual sites will allow potential candidates to interact with the site and apply in their native language, and feel comfortable engaging with recruiters.

Roose predicts that the addition of multilingual sites will encourage familiarity with the brand and its members, ultimately leading candidates to pick Johnsonville for their future career path.

Related: Mars’ Playbook for a Global Career Site Redesign

Experience So Far

So, how has Johnsonville’s experience with Phenom been so far? “Excellent,” Roose said.

Johnsonville needed a new, engaging career site that would draw candidates in and a smart site that would track engagement, provide job recommendations, and guide candidates through the career process. According to Roose, that’s just what they got.

“Phenom provides a platform that our business can update, interact with, and continually make a great site for potential candidates. We can make those changes quickly and easily, and do them in house. This is something that drew us to Phenom right away,” he shared.

Johnsonville’s Future with AI

Like any innovative company, Johnsonville’s recruitment strategy is far from stagnant. As they look to the future, Roose plans to leverage Phenom’s Employee Experience for internal referrals and internal mobility. Turning to current members for potential candidates is one of the best ways to attract top talent. And retaining that talent is paramount. Johnsonville’s plan to dive deeper into the platform will support internal members as they grow and develop in their career paths.

“The future is extremely bright now with our Phenom career recruiting site,” Roose said.

Related: The Sky’s the Limit: Inside Southwest’s Employee Referral Program

Want to learn more about high-volume hiring?

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Maggie Blehar

Maggie is a writer at Phenom, bringing you information on all things talent experience. In addition to writing, she enjoys traveling, painting, cooking, and spending time with her family and friends. 

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