Employer branding essentials
A Badenoch & Clark guide
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Our employer brand is what identifies us in the marketplace; it’s what makes us distinctive. It gives everyone in the organisation a handle on what we are, and everyone interested in joining us a clear picture of what to expect. It infuses our recruitment process and the way we engage with our colleagues throughout the organisation. We value it highly and work hard to live it. Steve Gilliver, EMEA HR Director, Dell
Employer branding – the latest buzzword to describe perceptions of an organisation as an employer – is being heralded in areas of the press as the answer to attracting and retaining the right talent in an increasingly competitive environment. It is not a logo, letterhead or a clever advertisement, but rather the communication of an organisation’s personality and unwritten promises about its culture to potential hires. This guide focuses on the top ten things employers need to consider. 1 Career prospects and planning attract
It’s true to say that employers which have strong brand awareness rely on it heavily to attract the right staff - half the employers surveyed for our Accounting & Finance workplace study in 2007 told us that their brand was a key factor when recruiting staff, placing it alongside career progression as the two main attributes to promote to potential recruits. Clearly, brand reputation works harder for major employers and is reflected in the fact that less high profile employers may find the recruitment process more difficult. There is however a disparity between this and what employees tell us. As might be expected, career progression is a key attribute, closely followed by salary. Yet jobseekers rate culture and location more highly than pure brand reputation when considering an employer. Some employers are taking heed. We’re seeing organisations secure the best talent by offering a clearly defined career plan, which maps out expectations of the individual and what can be expected from the organisation throughout their career.
your offering and message. All successful businesses are adapting their employer brand to their various target audiences, taking into account differing values, ambitions, needs in addition to geographic and cultural backgrounds. What makes an older worker tick compared to a Generation Y employee or someone from a different cultural background will vary hugely. Some great examples of this include Tesco who take the time to understand their audiences and tailor their recruitment messages, language and media appropriately. Competitor Asda have a value proposition focused on the over 50s. Citygroup, GE and HSBC, all of whom are active in China, tailor their propositions to reflect a culture where talent is at a premium and motivators are education, career development and learning. With Generation Y accounting for a growing proportion of the UK’s workforce, it is a key demographic to get right. Demanding more flexibility and better rewards for less hours, this group is harder to manage and will readily switch jobs – particularly if their needs are not met. Lose this group and you could lose a huge number of your workforce.
The bigger the organisation the more people will have already formed an opinion of it. So it’s essential that the two are in alignment and are not working against each other. When the two strategies are aligned, both current and prospective employees will receive the complementary messages, ensuring these become synonymous with your organisation. If your employer brand emphasises and cements the values communicated through your external brand, then when a prospective employee approaches your organisation, it will ensure they are being given the same consistent message.
Each impression counts
While a jobseeker’s first impression of your organisation will determine their immediate interest in you, this judgement will keep changing. Each brush with your brand...
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