The economy has been growing and unemployment rates have been dropping. These days, businesses have to compete for talent to fill jobs. Very often, best talent is quickly snatched up by corporate giants who offer a great salary and an attractive benefits package. Posting a job opening and expecting a flow of applicants is no longer an option. These days, HR is tasked with employer branding that markets the company to potential job applicants.
Every business has an employer brand, whether it’s intentionally constructed or not. Employer brand is the way your business is perceived in the job market. Investing in an employer branding strategy allows you to control that perception.
Existing employees matter
Not only does employer branding (or lack thereof) affect the way your company is perceived by potential candidates, it also affects the way it’s perceived by existing employees. People talk about work with friends and family. Not to mention, websites like Indeed.com and Glassdoor.com allow people to rate and review their employers. What they say inevitably shapes a certain image of your company. It is therefore vital to include a positive employee experience in your employer branding strategy.
How employer branding can help HR
A strong employer brand will help you attract a higher number of qualified candidates, reduce time to hire, and lower the costs of recruitment. Once you have hired new talent, a strong employer brand will also help you retain that talent.
How to build a strong employer brand
Evaluate your current situation
Surveying existing employees can provide valuable insights into why they chose to work for you and how you are perceived as an employer. Receiving feedback from your target candidates is also important in order to understand your employer image.
What are your goals? Do you want to increase employer brand awareness, attract more candidates, or retain talent? Once the goals are identified, you can set a number of KPIs to measure the effectiveness of your employer branding strategy.
Identify your candidate persona
Marketeers create buyer personas to help them target the right audience. Similarly to that, you need to identify your candidate persona. What are they like? What drives them? What is important to them? Money, secondary benefits, growth opportunities, holidays, work environment, commute time, company culture and values- these are just some of the factors that can tip a scale in your favor. After analyzing what drives your target candidates, you can create an appropriate employee value proposition (EVP) to attract them. EVP will act as the basis of your employer brand.
Most of the time, candidates will research you before they apply. You need to ensure that there is enough information online that can help them form an opinion about you as an employer. This means that your website, social media and overall presence needs to be aligned with the employer brand you want to communicate.
Utilize your employees
Your employees can help you build a strong employer brand (provided they are happy). Their first-hand experience can persuade candidates to choose you over other employers. Employee reviews, blogs, and videos can give candidates a taste of your work environment and help them see if your company is a good fit for them.
Throw a party
Organizing events, open days and social gatherings can help you build a strong employer brand. For potential candidates, events and open days are a great way to meet you face-to-face and learn more about the company. Throwing a party for existing employees can make them feel appreciated, boost morale and employee advocacy.
In our next blog, we will discuss the importance of the employee experience.