Talent attraction and recruitment for any company or recruitment team can be and often continues to be a tedious if not exhausting process. Trying to ascertain the exact job description and marketing channels to entice your ‘perfect’ candidate can take days of preparation and then there is that small activity of finding time to interview said candidates.
But what is the key in attracting and retaining a new employee and how can you make the process more invigorating? Job descriptions still need to be drafted and assessment or interviews can now be condensed through video, Skype and phone conversations before an actual live face to face interview takes place, but having a successful recruitment attraction process is crucial in gaining the right candidates for different talent segments from the very beginning with the right effort and thought is entirely achievable!
By developing a sustainable employer brand, not only do you reduce costs in the talent attraction and recruitment process, but you unearth the potential to generate profit through effective internal and external communication. Consequently, your potential recruits not to mention your current employees hold the power to cement your growing reputation as a successful, desirable and even irresistible employer.
Defining an employer brand
Creating an employer brand can be as simple or as complex as you have time for and how much credibility you want to achieve as a company. Your employer brand is based on external views held by anyone outside your company. It represents your market status, what you are like as an employer, your reputation as to how you treat your employees and how you communicate internally and externally. It is your open CV to your audience and can define what position you hold in the market, both against your direct competitors, as well as all others be that locally or globally.
Leading recruitment agency, Glassdoor, revealed that 86% of participants would consider leaving their current role if another employer had a fantastic reputation and offered them a role. 69% said they would decline the role if the company had a poor reputation. According to the same survey, 3 out of 4 employees are continuously on the lookout for a new job, with the average job hunter utilising 18 different sources.
Employer branding is therefore crucial in communicating your culture, values and employee sustainability; effectively raising the profile through reputable marketing and generating interest in a company which is consequently, favoured to work for and can be seen to value their employees.
It can have a cascading effect on every aspect of the business including its external communication, job description details to the incentives it provides to keep employees motivated and dedicated to the company.
Your employer brand gives you the opportunity to position yourselves above your competitors.
Why develop an employer brand?
Companies who value their employees and seek to maintain employ-ability over a period of time are often categorized as successful in their industry or amongst peer employers. Through showing fair and genuine incentive schemes and reward and recognition processes, companies develop a reputation of being a more favorable employer and effectively become sought out by eager candidates who wish to start their early careers or change roles as well as helping in-house recruiting teams or direct recruiters to have more successful and meaningful conversations with candidates for those hard to fill roles or when building talent pools for the future.
By having a clear and definable employer brand, it offers your company the chance to recruit a more talented and skilled level of employees, providing an opportunity to have significant positive impacts on the performance of the business. Stronger employee engagement is key in gaining greater productivity and innovation across the business affecting market share through positive reputation and service. Therefore, a stronger employer brand creates employee loyalty through improved and more aligned candidate profiling, minimising the risks of losing new and existing staff to competitors and consequently, reduces the need and costs for unnecessary replacement recruitment marketing and processes.
An all-encompassing circle from developing a brand to hiring a new candidate – the consequential virtuous circle of successful employer branding.
How to develop an employer brand
A successful employer brand has to be implemented throughout the whole company and cannot be forced. It is a reflection of how you treat employees and their outset of the company. Therefore, to strengthen an employer brand, you need to reinforce/create stronger engagement internally before reaching out to external audiences.
Before ascertaining your employer brand, think about:
- Current feedback received from employees; how do they view the company, what would they change, how effective is communication; is their voice heard and implemented?
- External feedback from stakeholders, clients, prospects – how do they perceive your company; what would they change; how could you communicate more effectively?
- Establish which roles could grow your company/cement relationships internally and externally and is there opportunity for growth and expansion in these areas?
- What values/culture/cores best represent your company – how could these be integrated into the company and fed into external communication?
It is imperative that your brand is fed throughout the company and instilled through your employees and that the perception you are trying to achieve is already being implemented in the work place. If employees feel that they are too far set aside from your values and growing culture, it can lead to a downward spiral reducing the overall effect of your employer brand. Keep your employees happy and your audience will grow accordingly.
Remember, your employees can either be your company’s strongest representatives or your biggest critics. Give them a voice and let potential candidates hear their thoughts – what better representation then those who already work for you! After all, the best employer brands accentuate the positive aspects of the company as well as providing a realistic image which audiences can relate and adhere to.
Maintaining your employer brand
Employee engagement is absolutely key in maintaining a strong and reputable employer brand. Candidates will be researching your company, using every channel possible including the overly honest (and frank) social media channels, therefore be considerate of who you employ, benefits you provide and motivation incentives you offer, sustaining consistency, transparency and reliability. Most of all install trust and honesty into your staff as it can have repercussions when recruiting additional staff members. Possible implementations techniques include;
- Integrating incentive schemes which are sustainable, ethical and most of all maintainable
- Promote the voice of existing employees using an omni channel approach
- Introduce accreditations valuing the work of employees periodically and share both internally and externally
- Entice regular feedback from current employees and implement changes accordingly
- Provide recognition schemes which peers can monitor at different levels within the company
Listen to your employees as a matter of course as well as when you specifically invite thoughts and opinions and let them positively shape the culture of your company every day.
Do not falter at the interview stage and thereafter
Now that you have enticed the right candidate for the role to the interview, make sure you reinforce your employer brand and culture through a successful experience for the candidate and delivery of who the company is, what it stands for, what you offer employees and what you can provide for them, if they chose to accept the role. Remember first impressions are still being conducted by the candidate as well as the staff in the hiring process and the last thing you want to do is fail at the final hurdle.
If they accept the role, maintain your brand by providing a fully detailed and informative induction process, ensuring the transition from starter to fully fledged employee is executed smoothly and efficiently. Remember, once they become an employee, they become a representative of your company, brand, and has an immediate impact on your overall reputation.
Monitor and maintain your employer brand
It is somewhat easy to develop a strong employer brand and introduce employee recognition schemes but the real work lies in the process of maintaining and expanding the brand. This is the door to increased visibility and ascertaining a successful position in your industry and as an employer for specific talent groups.
Monitor internal processes through periodic surveys, one on ones, training programs, workshops and annual events. Entice regular feedback and provide opportunities for feedback to be integrated back into the work place – feedback is only effective if it is acknowledged, processed and executed.
Above all, do not waste time developing a strong brand, only for it to expire within a year. Your objective is to expand and grow from your employees – raising the profile of your company in return.
Your employer brand represents how you operate as a company – listen to your employees and continuously find ways to implement change! Growth is key to success!
Engage & Prosper is a UK based privately owned company that helps organisations to develop a highly productive workplace culture through enhanced employee engagement and tailored reward and recognition programmers.