What is employer branding and why your business needs it

Employer branding

If a candidate makes it through two interviews, how do they decide which place to work for? 

Chances are they will go with an employer who has a better reputation. This reputation doesn’t solely refer to how well their products/services do in their market but also what they offer as an employer. This is called an employer’s brand, and it exists even if you don’t consciously create and manage it. It’s what your current, past, and potential employees think about you. Simply put, it’s your employer’s reputation. 

What is employer branding?

Employer branding is the act of managing your employer brand. It includes everything you do to showcase your workplace as a good place to work at. For example, the following social media post by Starbucks shares their employee’s story:

What is employer branding

A few other examples of employer branding include the way you write job descriptions or job offer letters, host open days, offer training and development opportunities, etc. 

What is the importance of employer branding? 

Now that you know what is employer branding, let’s talk about its ROI!

1. Helps with talent acquisition

Employer branding plays a huge role in recruitment and talent acquisition. Owing to this reason, an employer brand is also called a ‘talent’ brand.

Today the candidates, especially millennials, do their research before applying to any company. It includes going through online employee reviews, social media, or interactions with existing and former employees. So, a strong employer reputation should be a priority because it will not only attract more candidates to your company but also the top ones. Your employer brand would also set you apart from your competition so that the candidates know what your company can offer.

Many employers have realised these benefits of employer branding. According to a LinkedIn survey on employer branding, 72% of employers believe that employer branding is important for their hiring.

2. Improves employee retention rate

If your employer brand is a true representation of your work environment, then you will not only be able to attract the best talent but also retain them.

A good employer brand also improves the engagement rate of the existing employees who are then more likely to stay with your company.

3. Turns employees into your ambassadors

Effective employer branding results in employees who are passionate about your organisation. Such employees become advocates for your company. They would recommend your company to friends and family and leave good reviews on sites such as Glassdoor.

4. Reduces hiring costs

The right kind of employer branding can help you in attracting more candidates organically.This can help you save money and time on advertising and recruiting agencies.

Additionally, as mentioned before, a good employer brand leads to better talent acquisition and employee retention rate which can both cut down on hiring cost and prevent productivity loss. 

As you can see, employer branding is serious business. If any of the above benefits of employer branding appeal to you, it’s worth investing your time in coming up with an employer branding strategy.

How to create an employer branding strategy?

Employer branding comes down to finding out what makes your company a great workplace and building a reputation that’s aligned with it. It should also resonate with the candidates that you seek to attract. 

This process can be broadly broken down into three steps:

1. Becoming aware of your employer’s brand

You can do this by examining every touchpoint that you have with your current employees and potential candidates. If this sounds like Greek to you, it basically means analyse everything you do as an employer from writing a job description to the rejection letter that you send out. You should also conduct surveys with your employees to find out what they like and dislike about working at your organisation.

2. Creating and influencing your employer branding

Now that you know the status quo of your employer’s reputation, you need to find out if that’s the message you want to get across. If it’s not, let’s get you started! 

Here are a few steps you can follow to create your employer branding:

i. Write an employer value proposition 

To begin with, figure out what your employer value proposition (EVP) is. An EVP is a combination of your company values and benefits. It refers to what a candidate can expect from you in return for their skills or whatever they bring to the table.

Writing an EVP involves going beyond asking what the candidates can do for you. Besides compensation, it should include other benefits such as work-life balance, job security, flexibility, learning and development opportunities, etc. 

ii. Create personas for employer branding

Just like you create marketing personas, you can create personas for your ideal candidates. You can segment them into different categories such as entry-level, mid-career, executive, etc. Each of these personas will seek different things from your brand. Having these personas will help you come up with employer branding ideas to target each type.

iii. Set goals 

Without goals, there’s no knowing what it is that you hope to accomplish. Your employer branding goals can comprise increasing the number of applications, improving employee engagement, and getting better candidates, etc.

iv. Choose channels for employer branding

Depending on your goal, determine the channel you will be using. For example, if you want to market yourself to millennials, social media is the place to be. Other channels for employer branding include company websites, blogs, job descriptions, online queries, open days, social media, YouTube videos, etc. 

Make sure that you inject your personality into whichever channel you use. For example, is there a lot of room for creativity or innovation in your organisation? Show what kind of activities your employees engage in to bring out their creativity or innovation. Or, if your workplace takes pride in having fun, then flaunt that!

v. Measure the impact

Measure the impact of your efforts to determine whether you are becoming the Ronaldo of employer branding. You can do this by defining your key performance indicators (KPIs). For example, you can track the turnover rate for a certain role before and after using your employer branding strategy.

What not to do while creating your employer branding?

1. Don’t fake it 

Employer branding is an opportunity for you to create the right expectations from your company, so that employees know what they are signing up for. Therefore, be authentic! 

2. Don’t use stock phrases or repetitive messages

The whole point of having an employer brand is to set you apart. So, steer clear from generic content like ‘our people are our greatest asset’.

Who is responsible for employer branding?

So, you are ready to dive in, but don’t know who should be a part of this super important mission? 

Because employer branding is part marketing, it might be worthwhile to take some of your star marketeers onboard. Besides the HR and marketing teams, the CEO should be an active participant in the shaping of the employer brand. So, the CEO along with an HR professional and a marketing professional could use their charms to give your employer brand a makeover!

This was a glimpse into the world of employer branding. Over to you now! 

If you are looking for freshers who would be the perfect fit for your employer’s brand, you can register and post a job on Fresher Jobs on Internshala.

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