‘Social’ is the Media of Choice for Enhancing Employer Brands

Screen Shot 2014-06-02 at 11.23.16 AMMore than career website development, and more than any other activity like developing brand strategies, it is social media that companies are turning to for enhanching their employer brands.

That’s one of the findings of a new 18-country study of employer brands around the world. Other findings:

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  • Employee engagement is a top measure of a brand’s ROI — more than quality of hire, retention, or best-employer awards.
  • Companies say the videos they’re making are not effective in enhancing their brands.
  • Human resources, not marketing, manages the employer brand in most companies in most (but not all) countries.

Employer Brand International did the study, embedded below.


3 Comments on “‘Social’ is the Media of Choice for Enhancing Employer Brands

  1. Thank you Todd. I gave the report a quick read through this morning and it has some interesting data that I think will be really useful for a couple different projects we are currently working on so I appreciate you positing it here.

    Employer branding is definitely a rapidly evolving area and best-practices have yet to be defined. In my experience, the two biggest challenges in employer branding are:

    (1) A lot of companies are “feast or famine” in terms of candidates. There are often jobs where the number of qualified applicants is very large. Sometimes too large. Managing the applicant flow in a way that is both as respectful as possible to the applicants and compliant from a regulatory perspective takes up a lot of resources. You get into too much of a good thing being just too much of a good thing. At the same time, those same companies will have a generally smaller but significant number of positions where there are few or no qualified applicants. Jobs stay open for long lengths of time and get pushed out across different platforms (job boards, fairs, social media, etc.) and qualified candidates do not appear. This is a factor of constantly increasing specialization driven by, but not limited to, technology. So, more and more, companies need to think about their employee branding as a laser beam and not a fire hose. How do you get you increase your standing as an “employer of choice” in the specific skill based communities that you want to target? Doing this is the only way employer branding becomes a real solution to a real problem and not just a lot of hype and buzzwords for consultants to use to generate fees. This isn’t easy and it involves more than a flashy video with a bunch of smiling beautiful people. But it can be done.

    (2) Good metrics are very difficult to develop in employer branding. This is tightly tied to the first problem. How do you measure positive change and staffing problems being solved and NOT just measure random activity. The fact that “employee engagement” is being used as the number one measure of ROI kind of makes me roll my eyes a bit. Sounds like a good metric for the people creating the branding campaign because it’s not to tough to just get a lot of “any body” eyeballs interested. But actually getting more people interested with skills that have traditionally been tough to come by is MUCH more difficult.

    As an aside, it’s nice to see Slideshare popping up here. I think their technology is really great.

    Doug Friedman

  2. RE: Employee engagement is a top measure of a brand’s ROI

    Yes, indeed, many times an employer’s best brand ambassadors are the very employees who are ecstatic to work there.

    When an employee knows and feels that his accomplishments are valued, he will gush with how great that company is. This is conveyed in a very sincere manner.

    It was evident in the days before social media. This was especially true when the model was to work with 1 company from graduation to retirement. You’d hear people identify themselves by the name of that factory, that car maker, that retailer.

    What’s challenging now is the employer/employee relationship is undergoing rapid transformation. People don’t stay for life with a company any more. People are also informed as to the operating realities of companies, especially the more they and their friends are personally affected by international mergers and acquisitions.

    People are also more alert to marketing and promotion techniques. Beyond what they spot on social media, they find means to substantiate it.

    Word of mouth carries exponential credibility. I’ve seen it happen repeatedly where a person sees ads, Web sites or brochures of upbeat corporate culture and then asks somebody. They may know somebody there. Or they meet a colleague at a professional meeting or trade show. They then ask, “So tell me, John, what’s it really like to work at Worldly Widgets?”

    It’s therefore to employers’ advantage to create workplaces where employees instinctively know they are valued. That form of believable word of mouth is called “free advertising.”

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