“You can be the greatest”: New tools to recruit

Many state and local governments are trying to re-brand themselves.


Here are two videos that show how governments, large and small, are trying to deliver a friendly, positive and purpose-driven message about working for the public sector.


The first is from the small city of Sequim, Washington. We’ve watched it about a dozen times and can barely suppress our desire to move there. The video was suggested to us by the always helpful and knowledgeable Karen Thoreson, president of the Alliance for Innovation.


We heard about the second video when we interviewed Susan Gard, chief of policy for the Department of Human Resources in San Francisco, for our recent Governing column, “Are Nonprofits the New Go-To Choice for Altruistic Jobseekers?”


The City and County of San Francisco did extensive market research before setting on the motto it now uses in its recruiting efforts: “A career with the city is a Career with a Purpose.”


Gard explained what the city’s research efforts taught them. “The one thing people are looking for above pay, above benefits, they’re looking for meaningful work.”


“We don’t offer stock options. We don’t have ping pong tables, but we offer purpose. Our tagline is connecting people with purpose."



We invite other cities, counties, states, school districts, etc., to send us short recruiting videos that they think stand out. We’ll feature ones we like in future posts.

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