Employer branding is the perception of qualities that make a company a desirable place to work. Understanding the importance of internal and external employer branding is pivotal in recruiting and retaining top talent.
By Alexander Haldemann, PhD, and Lukas Eiselin, MetaDesign
Employees are a brand’s most valuable asset, but many companies do not have an employer brand strategy in place. By developing a clear employer brand strategy and defining attributes like compensation, career growth and development, recognition, company perks and job security, companies can improve employee engagement and increase retention.
Qualified candidates can pick and choose the companies they want to work for, thus, companies are discovering they have to talk about themselves and their brand in a way that is memorable and unique. On top of that, companies now compete not only within their business sectors, but also with heavyweights in technology and consulting, who hire people from all kinds of professional backgrounds.
Use a targeted approach to attract ideal candidates
When selling liability insurance or a bar of chocolate, quantitative targets are what counts. Every customer is equal. But employer branding works differently. It doesn’t try to attract as many candidates as possible; instead, it only targets qualified ones.
For that, a company needs to define its target group and consider: Who are the ideal employees? What are their skills? What kind of personality fits well into the company culture and helps advance the company?
For communication, that means a company aligns its employer brand to the skill set and personality type of an ideal employee, and states clearly who it is looking for and who it is not.
Build on the company brand
Successful employer branding is based directly on the company’s market position. This ensures that the company communicates consistently and that the target audience does not perceive a disparate employer brand. Employer branding is one integrated profile of a company as an attractive place to work.
Employer branding as a magic weapon
The majority of companies are not branded effectively as employers, and often their verbal and visual messaging systems don’t differ much from those of their competitors. The result: they do not have a clear profile on the job market or generate the resonance they were hoping for. Often, companies do not really understand what exactly the presumed “magic weapon” of employer branding is. What phases does a proper employer branding process include? And what success factors make a real difference?
EIGHT SUCCESS FACTORS OF EMPLOYEE BRANDING
01 Involve key ambassadors
Along with a company’s current employees, key ambassadors include its alumni, managers and internal and external recruiters.
02 Harmonize the employer brand with the company brand
The company brand and employer brand are not disparate entities, but are aligned communication vehicles.
03 Focus on the ideal employee
Employer branding doesn’t focus on the quantity of candidates; it focuses on the quality of candidates.
04 Merge human resources and corporate communication
The more clearly a brand communicates, the more attractive it is for current and potential employees – and the closer it gets to attracting the right people.
05 Dare to be different
A company must distinguish itself clearly from others to be seen as a powerful employer.
06 Brand from the inside out
A company’s employees are its first target group, and its most important ambassadors.
07 Integrate communications
Each touchpoint, no matter how small, communicates the brand and becomes part of its strong, consistent profile.
08 Drive employee interaction
Employer branding is both a motor and a motivator for a company’s employees
to live and strengthen its brand.
Click here to learn more about Employer Branding and read the white paper
Molly Davis is a Communication Strategist at MetaDesign San Francisco.