In today’s talent war, a strong internal and employer brand can help companies attract and retain top talent and positively impact its business performance.
Companies that are perceived to be attractive employers will find it easier to attract talent as people want to work for popular employers. By communicating about what the work environment is like, companies are also more likely to attract the right talent that fits their organisational culture. More applicants, better candidates and higher offer-acceptance rates are critical for employee attraction in today’s tight labour market.
A strong employer branding also goes a long way in engaging employees. By developing consistent internal and external messages about what it is like to work for the company, employer branding creates a stronger corporate culture. An attractive employer creates a positive image in the mind of employees. A company’s reputation is among the factors that potential employees consider when choosing a job. A reputable company is which makes them proud to work for the company and motivates them to stay.
To remain an employer of choice, companies will also implement better management practices such as talent development and performance management programmes that will further enhance talent retention which in turn, reduces recruiting cost and attrition rates.
By hiring and retaining strong talents, companies can grow and maintain a competitive edge. Corporate and employer brands are also interlinked. Like employees who want to work for top employers, customers want to do business with a popular employer. Thus, a good employment brand supports the corporate brand and creates positive effect on the business.
Employee Value Proposition (EVP)
At the heart of employment branding is the Employee Value Proposition (EVP) – the perceived employment experience that a company offers employees. An EVP includes total rewards, purpose and values of the organisation, job nature, culture and colleagues. Only an established EVP will allow employer branding to unleash its full potential to communicate the key propositions why people want to work for the company.
Many top employers have compelling EVPs which enables them to build strong employer brands that enhance employee attraction and retention. Let us take a look at some of the world’s most attractive employers in 2012 (based on Universum’s global index of employer attractiveness) and find out what differentiates them in the marketplace.
The world’s most attractive employer receives over one million applications a year! Google’s employer brand is clearly communicated – the technology giant offers a fun and creative work environment that requires employees to play hard and work hard, and to collaborate with great people to solve big technology problems and produce great results. Candidates know what to expect and want to be part of this culture.
L’Oreal is an award-winning company for both its products and human resources initiatives. Its slogan ‘Because you’re worth it’ is engrained in its culture and conveys that employees deserve the long-term investment that the company has put in them. Policies such as global profit sharing and good career prospects make it an attractive place to work.
By building from within, Procter & Gamble consistently put out the message that it encourages employee potential and enables them to succeed. Its internal people development system is what makes its employer brand unique and differentiates it from competitors. The internal promotion mechanism enables employees to identify with the corporate culture and contributes to the development of the company and the employees.
Microsoft has strong values that focus on a global approach, highest quality, and innovation. Employees are given the opportunity to work with innovative products. Externally, the company emphasizes on being creative on the job. Internally, the company ensures that employees can develop continuously and strike a work-life balance. This aligns with its employer branding of being innovative, powerful and global.
At Unilever, product innovation and sustainable living are the crux of its brand. This intertwines with its employment brand to be the employer of choice for people who want to work on the future in a sustainable way. Its ‘Made By You’ message communicates that employees have the opportunity to build big consumer brands and develop lasting, challenging careers at the same time.
Five steps to Employer Branding
Universum, the global leader in employer branding, suggests five steps for companies to develop the employer brand:
Know the positioning of your company in the employment market so as to determine the appropriate action plan.
2. Employee Value Proposition (EVP)
Analyse the factors influencing the employer brand, and define a strong and true EVP. This will help you to deliver sound communications and develop an attractive employment brand.
3. Communication strategy
Choose the most efficient and effective channels to reach the talent pool. It is important to emphasise the most attractive factors and be consistent in employer communications.
4. Communication Solutions
Use the right words and images to express your company’s EVP so it is in line with the corporate identity and branding efforts. Always strive to develop consistency for all communication materials.
Implement all the steps, monitor closely what works and adjust the action plan all the time. It is important to set clear and measurable goals on what your company wants to achieve with the planned activities.
If your company has not started on the employer branding journey, it is time to take the first step and reap the benefits of a strong employer brand.
Cindy is a freelance writer and has 10 years of communications and human resource experience in the public and service sector. She is an expert in employee engagement and employer branding and has won major HR Awards.
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