Employment Branding is the new hot topic among HR professionals trying to showcase their company’s value proposition to potential candidates. But what does this buzzword really mean? Your organization’s sales and marketing department manages the brand for the products and services it provides. As an HR professional, you are responsible for the organization’s brand from an employment perspective.
Your “employer brand” is your company’s reputation as an employer: Are you known for offering opportunities for growth or flexible work arrangements? Are you known for requiring long hours or micromanaging employees? Whatever your employer reputation, it plays a vital role in your ability to attract, recruit and retain the employees that can build success for your organization.
As an HR professional, you know that securing the right talent is crucial for bottom-line success. So you can’t leave your employer brand to chance. Savvy HR pros engage in ongoing efforts to communicate what makes their organizations best places to work. Those communication efforts, and the employment realities to back them up, are employment branding.
Your organization already has an employer brand, but you may not be in control of it if you’re not actively participating in it. Get started by first paying attention to what employees, former employees and job seekers are saying about your company as a place to work.
In the age of social media, it’s easier than ever before to keep up with your employer brand: Search company reviews on Glassdoor and monitor Twitter feeds and Facebook posts that mention working at your company. In addition, consider surveying your employees on a regular basis to find out what they think about the company and what changes they would like to see. Also, consider surveying applicants and new recruits to obtain their feedback about the application and interview process.
Once you know what’s being said about your company as an employer, it’s time to take control of the message. First, determine what qualities you would most like to be associated with as an employer and what attributes differentiate your organization from others.
Next, use these qualities and attributes as a guide to begin crafting the messages you want to send to prospective employees. Make your voice heard as part of the conversation about your company by responding to reviews on Glassdoor and promoting the qualities you want to emphasize through Tweets, Facebook posts and on your careers page. Develop content that will communicate your employer brand, including articles and videos that can be posted on your hiring website and on other job search sites.
Finally, ensure that the culture you’re promoting actually does exist at your company. If you want to be known as a company that values philanthropy, make sure that employees really are being given opportunities to spend a day volunteering for local charities or giving back in other ways. If you want to be seen as an employer that values work-life balance, make sure your workplace policies allow for flex time, telecommuting or other options that make balance easier for employees. If your workplace culture doesn’t match the brand you are promoting, work to change the culture or consider changing the message. There’s nothing more damaging than an empty brand promise.