What is employer branding and how it can help you find the best talent
A company’s culture and a good name are important attributes to people, when deciding for what kind of employer they’d like to work. That’s the main reason, why employer branding has become such an important part of a company strategy. Why does it seem that employer branding is everywhere and how can it help you get the best talent for your company?
The proper employer branding strategy and defined EVP (employer value proposition) can help you find new employees faster, easier, and cheaper. At the same time, it can improve your current employee loyalty and make you stand out from the competition. We will tell you why and how to do it.
What is employer branding?
Employer branding represents all activities connected to your employer brand. Simply put, it is how your own employees and the public see you as an employer. Every company has its employer brand. You can either let it live on its own or take it into your own hands and build and strengthen your employer brand. A good start begins with an internal analysis and a definition of an EVP. Then you can communicate your employer brand to the public.
What is an EVP – employer branding proposition?
EVP stands for the things that you as an employer offer. It contains the vision of your company, your approach to employees, company culture, career progression, education, and benefits. Properly defined EVP will last for ages, however, if necessary, you should be ready to change it.
The pandemic has influenced our lives and all of its aspects. It has significantly changed the way we work. Many companies were forced to change the work environment emphasizing new hygienic standards, more often or permanent home office, the need for new skills or higher demand for mental health awareness. Your EVP should consider these new elements.
Always define your EVP with regards to your target group
Let’s take a look at the EVP of some companies. We chose a big company and a smaller one with a specific target audience. You can see two different approaches, that perfectly speak to their target audience.
Lidl is a company that has for a long time understood the importance of employer branding and communication. Right now, they are focusing on a topic of gender pay equality. Their employer value proposition speaks about the stability and considers current situation.
“Each employee is important to us. Lidl is not just an employment. We are a solid part of life in Slovakia, foremost to the people who are working for us. Not only in good times, but also through the pandemic, when some employers are closing their doors or businesses.
Stability is one of our core values and right now it is more important than ever. Lidl has always been a reliable employer for current and potential employees.”
As for the example we chose Footshop, a company that sells sneakers and clothes (online and in stores), which operates in 18 markets. Let’s look at their EVP:
“No bullshit. In 2014 no one knew us, in 2016 we became number one in the Czech Republic. To be the best, you need to evolve. So don’t stand in the same place and change the stale ways. Tell us, what we can do differently, evolve and grow with us.
Be humble. Keep your feet on the ground and invest your time and company money effectively. As Čistychov raps: ”Don’t forget where you’re from or who you are, best remember the address you’re from.” Also, don’t shame our competition, you never know, when you’d need to go and buy sneakers we don’t sell.
Think B.I.G. Think big and out of the box. We were the first to create a serious YouTube channel, we were the first to translate our web page into 10 languages, we were the first to organize parties for hundreds of people. We like to experiment and look for inspiration outside the industry and region.
Stay real. You can meet the biggest sneakerheads in the country in our office, so use it to your advantage and keep up to date with everything going on in the sneaker and streetwear world. Don’t be formal and boring. We live what we represent.”
TIP: How to use your EVP in a job ad? Catch the job seekers attention right at the beginning, show off your company culture, don’t forget to highlight the important benefits and introduce your company as an attractive employer in the section About company. For 35 % Slovaks the fear of instability of a new job is the main reason they are afraid to change jobs. If you present yourself as a reliable employer, you will eliminate this fear beforehand.
Why is employer branding so important?
Digital technologies have brought us many information sources that people can use. At the same time, employers have way more possibilities to present themselves and to communicate. 69 % of companies consider employer branding as a priority for 2021.
Based on our statistics we see that the companies that have strengthen their employer brand the most in the last year are from retail and IT. Both industries are among the TOP 10 most posted job ads categories. They aim to stand out from the competition, strengthen the brand and attract quality candidates.
Why should you care, how your company is being perceived as an employer? Your employer brand can influence other parts of your business such as hiring new employees, retaining current employees and keeping them engaged. Indirectly it influences the reputation and image of your company.
TIP: Thanks to social media, every company has tools at disposal they can use to communicate with potential candidates and build the employer brand.
Branding that will make you stand out
If you want your employer branding strategy to work, you need your communication to be consistent and long-term. That applies also to your job ads. Authentic graphic elements, photos and videos will perfectly introduce your company and its culture even without words.
On Profesia.sk, you can choose various ways how to incorporate your branding in your hiring strategy. Big companies already understand the importance to invest in their employer brand. 85 % of companies with 1 000 – 1 999 employees and almost three quarters of companies with 500 – 999 employees have already been using design elements in their job ads. The less employees do a company have, the less branding elements are used in their job ads.
Employer branding is not a thing only for the big companies. If you are a smaller company or a startup you can start just by adding a logo to your job ad. That will help differentiate your company from other companies and make job seekers get to know your brand. You can take it one step further by choosing a job ad in design. This way you can communicate your brand and have a job ad in design, even if you seldom post job ads. Add a logo to your job ad.
TIP: Show don’t tell. Short and to the point video can tell more about your company than ten lines of text. It will show the atmosphere, culture and it will leave a longer impression. If you are not afraid to take a little risk, you can use the video to show a more fun or creative side of your company.
Benefits of quality employer branding
Fill your open jobs more quickly. If your employer branding works, you should find new employees quickly and more effectively. People should react more positively and actively to an opportunity to work for you.
Loyalty of current employees. The goal of everyone working in HR is a low turnover of employees, having long-term employees and a working referral program. If your current employees recommend open jobs to their friends, you know your strategy is working.
Good reputation. Long-term and consistent communication of your employer brand leads to more awareness about your company. It is important that the public knows not only what you do, but also how it is to work for you. That will help you get more quality candidates. A good reputation is the most important information about an employer for 27 % people.
TIP: Try hard to answer each candidate, who applied for your job ad. If you are quiet, a candidate has no feedback if you received his/hers application. For about a third of job seekers find it very frustrating when they have no feedback from an employer. This can lead to a lower chance, that the candidate will apply for a job with your company again in the future. You can use mark and its feature Automatic reply to answer the candidates. You can very easily set up an e-mail templates and use them to answer several candidates at the same time, and let them know you received their application, you want to invite them for an interview or that they are not the candidate you’re looking for.
Trends that employer branding needs to get ready for
Times are changing and so are the ways people work. The main drivers of this change are young people – millennials and gen Z. If you are looking for quality candidates you should consider the requirements of these generations and let them know. The Deloitte Global 2021 Millenial and Gen Z survey introduces some of these trends that sooner or later recruiters would need to react to.
- Both generations require more flexibility. A quarter of millennials and 22 % Gen Z wants to come back to the office, at the same time, they want to spend less time in it.
- They are choosing their employer based on their ethics. Values and ethics are very important to young people. In the last two years, 44 % millennials and almost half of Gen Z made decisions about their career and employers based on their ethics. For many it is unacceptable to work for a company with a bad reputation.
- Mental health importance. The pandemic has made us focus more on our mental health. More than a third of all respondents stated that they have missed work because of stress or anxiety. So, it is very important that companies would care about mental health of their employees and provide necessary support.