Employer branding has been heating up. According to last year’s LinkedIn report on U.S. 2012 recruiting trends, recruiting leaders are fearful their competitors are investing more heavily in employer branding than they are. No surprise. Employer branding done well brings in qualified candidates who are pre-sold with your organization’s mission, vision, and work rewards, making a recruiter’s job much easier. For larger organizations, having a well-articulated employer brand architecture ensures consistency or messaging- where everyone, from employees to recruiters, is singing in one voice.
There is one question that gets asked repeatedly, in every employer branding workshop that we hold. “But where does our employer brand fit with our corporate brand?”
It’s not unheard of for some companies to create an employer brand slogan that lives only within HR, and more specifically recruiting. Often, against best practice, it has no bearing on a true employer value proposition, one that is based upon the unique elements of your culture and workplace, resonates with the people you would like more of, and integrates with the same value proposition to your consumer base. But this should change.
Why You Should Do It
Integrating your employer brand with your corporate brand will build a brand fortress — a talented body of people working together to support the same corporate goals and achieve positive outcomes from their efforts. There are demonstrated financial rewards with having an engaged workforce of people who truly believe in what the company is trying to achieve and how they deliver on the corporate brand promise.
How You Can Do It
The marketing department is your friend. Talk to them and find out what information they have on hand. You might get consumer surveys, industry trends, and if you’re really lucky, the brand book. Along with logos, color palettes, and typography, the brand book should contain the brand position of your organization, what your organization is and what it stands for.
These words and phrases sum up your company’s vision and customer promise, and might also define how the brand is brought to life. Everything you do in communication and action needs to support that statement, including your employer brand.
The consumer brand will be your guide to how your company wants people to feel about the brand and the overarching business objective you want to achieve. And that’s where the workforce enters.
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Look closely at that statement. There are emotional qualities embedded within in it. “Confidence,” “passion,” “determination,” and “diligence” enjoyment may be some of the feelings it tries to evoke. Those feelings are what the employer brand has to align with.
What are the demonstrated experiences from your workplace that bring those emotions to life? What needs to change, if anything, to keep those emotions true through the pre-and post employment cycle? Think of the potential talent that you are looking to hire. Can they buy into that emotional space? Do your business goals resonate with them, or is it simply a good job fit?
Finding the true brand ambassadors through your employer branding will have a positive impact on culture, performance, recruiting, and retention. You’ll find after time you’ll have employees who come, stay, grow, and recommend others committed to the company’s success.
And that’s the ROI of branding done right.