In today's competitive job market, it is crucial for organizations to have a strong employer brand. An employer brand represents the company's reputation as a place to work and is a critical factor in attracting top talent. Simply put: how do you as a company advertise to prospective employees. At TalentFund, we would argue that the employer brand goes beyond the organization - but also applies to departments, teams and leaders within an organization.
As the war for talent continues, companies that can effectively showcase their employer brand will have a competitive advantage in attracting and retaining top-performing employees.
Understand Prospective Employees
One of the first steps in creating a positive employer brand is understanding the candidate market. To be an employer of choice, companies need to listen to what matters most to candidates. Offering snacks in the office when employees want remote work does not connect with your prospective talent pool and instead creates a larger divide. Today's job seekers are looking for companies that prioritize high-level benefits, competitive salaries, career development opportunities, and flexibility.
High-Level Benefits: Candidates are looking for companies that will take care of them by providing high-level benefits. These include a good number of vacation days, paid sick leave, and a comprehensive health plan. Companies can also differentiate themselves by offering additional benefits that enhance the employee experience. These benefits should look different based upon what your employee base is looking for and what your organization can effectively offer.
Competitive Salaries: The best candidates expect to be sufficiently compensated for their experience. Companies must offer a competitive salary to attract the best candidates. It is important to keep an eye on average salaries for the positions you post and be prepared to increase the maximum salary to secure the best of the best.
Career Development Opportunities: Employees are looking for employers that help them grow. A strong career development strategy can help employees reach their career goals. Companies can assign internal mentors and pay for courses or classes to help employees increase their skills.
Flexibility: After working from home during the pandemic, employees are now demanding more flexibility. Offering a hybrid model that allows employees to work in the office, remotely, or a combination of both can appeal to all employees. Allowing employees to start and finish their day when they want, within reason, and ensuring all required hours are worked is also a big plus. Again, this flexibility must align with your organization's capabilities. At minimum, upfront communication on working schedule expectations is a must in today's job market.
Understand YOUR ORGANIZATION'S OFFERINGS
Once companies understand what candidates are looking for in an employer, they need to assess their own offering. To become an attractive employer, companies need to assess where they currently stand and make necessary adjustments. This could include offering more flexibility to staff or making salaries more competitive.
Similar to understanding your product or service and the value you bring to a consumer, consider the same exercise for employees! What do you offer to employees and why do employees stay with your organization?
A great practice to help capture the employee experience: conduct interviews with current employees! Not only will this help you to understand what you are currently doing well, but also where you might have improvements or changes to your current offerings, benefits or company environment. We often talk with hiring managers that might face limitations in what they can offer: for example related to compensation. But the best hiring managers identify other value they can bring to the employee experience - for example providing professional development, upward mobility and overall career and growth opportunities.
Understanding your company, team and leadership value-add is a key step to creating your employer brand.
bRING YOUR EMPLOYER BRAND TO LIFE
Once you've outlined a clear understanding of who you are as an organization, it is vital to bring that information to life in the form of employer advertising.
Advertising your employer brand is similar to marketing to clients and consumers. Top organization's have prioritized marketing their employer brand with the same focus as advertising to clients and consumers. Everything available to the public should reflect the employer brand - consider how you are showing what it is like to work at your organization: what examples can you share? What employee features can you highlight? How can you bring the employee experience to life for the prospective employee to enjoy?
Candidate Experience: The first impression is the recruiting process that a prospective employee experiences. Providing a terrific candidate experience by being responsive in communication, timely in moving through the process, and providing a human experience versus canned and automated emails is crucial.
Employee Reviews: Sites like Glassdoor, ZipRecruiter, Indeed, and Google highlight employee reviews. Candidates review these sites and make decisions on their interest in a prospective employer. Companies should take an active approach to these profiles.
Online Presence: Candidates have access to all kinds of information on a prospective employer. Companies need to ensure that their current online presence markets the business in the right way. Frequently promoting the employer brand can help reach passive candidates, increase the size of the talent pool, and help with continuous recruitment.
In today's war for talent, it is essential for companies to prioritize their employer brand to attract and retain top-performing employees - not only for your hiring needs today but for your future hiring opportunities. By understanding what candidates are looking for in an employer, assessing what the company currently offers, and creating an appealing employer brand, you can attract top talent to fuel your organization.