We have already discussed the need for a strong Employee Branding Program, and now we will move on to strategy’s to decrease the expense of hiring, increase the number of applicants to choose from within your applicant pool, and how to ensure that prospective employee’s very much want to work for your company by creating a strong and effective employee branding strategy.
The primary goals of any organizational branding strategy should obviously include an emphasis of the organizations employee friendly culture and environment. In today’s workforce the average employee is spending more and more time at the office, so it should be a place where they feel safe and comfortable—a second home if you will. If an organization does this effectively, they will then have accomplished the other major goal of a branding strategy—to stand out among the competitors from which the potential employees have to choose.
It is extremely important, however, to make sure the branding promise actually matches the brand experience of both the hired employee, and the candidates from the moment they become a candidate, because if the promises are not met, this will create an undercurrent of distrust which can infect an organization like a virus. These promises can be best met by including supervisors, recruiters, and even interviewers in the creation and implementation of the branding strategy.
The employment brand can be seen as being made up of five key ingredients.
- Alignment of customer and employment expectations of the brand – The brand expectation and message should be shared with those who are primarily involved with marketing the organization as well as those tasked with interviewing and hiring prospective candidates. New employees should be chosen, in part, due to their identification with and belief in the employment brand, and should start their first day with the goal to embody and demonstrate those beliefs on a daily basis. This is at the core of an organizations culture.
- Concrete offer of Value—Consider why the organization exists, including its heritage. What are the beliefs and core values? Speak to members of the organization—from the managers to the CSR’S—to find out the most important attributes of the company according to them. Incorporate these into the brand.
- Community Loyalty –Identify ways in which your organizations members can give back to the community by paying employees who have to attend jury duty, or organize organization wide blood drives or volunteering. The word of mouth brand advertising created by such community involvement is worth more than its weight in gold.
- Checks and balances of Authenticity—Conduct periodic reviews of the hiring process. Perform exit interviews of employees that are leaving the company. Ask for feedback from recently hired employees to check if the brand is measuring up to their expectations. Finally, if it is possibly, solicit feedback from candidates that did not accept the employment offer to find out why.
- Culture –Finally, combining together all of the elements above, define the organization’s unique culture and how the organization commits to it. Knowledge gained from research done while creating a clear value proposition can be helpful when creating this definition.
As with any brand, a successful employment brand is one that has a solid foundation in an organizations culture, purpose, and core values that are upheld and acted upon. A successful employment brand is also a very fragile thing, and maintaining it is just as important, if not more so, than creating it. Ensure that every employee that walks through the doors of your organization on their first day understands it’s importance and are ready to live the brand.
David Klein is a leading Executive IT Recruiter & Headhunter with over 15 years industry experience. As Manager of Recruitment Strategy for KDS Staffing, Inc., he has achieved industry-leading success. David has successfully led, trained and introduced many in the art of Executive Recruitment and Headhunting. If you or your organization would like to discuss hiring needs, contact David at 646-650-2833 or firstname.lastname@example.org.