Any employer hoping to have an effective recruiting operation needs to stand out from their peers. It’s not enough to be a great workplace with engaged employees — you need to know what makes you different. Your candidates need a reason to choose you in particular.
One important factor that differentiates employers is their brand. Just as organizations market products and services to consumers in order to succeed as a business, they must also market themselves to potential applicants to have the best chance at drawing out the talent they need. One of the greatest assets for any employer is a strong, authentic brand that shows exactly what makes them special and why their employees work for them.
How can you build a strong, authentic brand? Let’s look at four things you can do.
Learn your strengths
An important step toward developing an employer brand is asking your employees why they work for you. A thorough assessment of your organization’s culture will give you a good understanding of what attracted your employees to you. This information will help you plan your message to future applicants and make decisions on your organization’s development going forward.
Articulate your values
Applicants, especially Millennials, commonly use employers’ values as an important factor when deciding whether to apply and whether to accept a job offer. They will be attracted to employers who visibly appreciate and support their employees, their customers, and their communities. Your message to potential applicants should clearly state your values and show that you do adhere to them.
It’s just not possible to keep the same brand message forever. Even a message that worked wonderfully a few years ago may be much less effective now. Your organization’s image and culture are always changing, and you need to pay attention if you hope to spread an authentic message. An outdated message can easily become a liability for you as a recruitment tool as employee experiences begin to contradict it.
Fortunately, you have plenty of tools for keeping your message current. Employee satisfaction surveys, workshops, and exit interviews give you an inside view on the changes in day-to-day life at your organization. Social media monitoring can expand on internal culture monitoring, since employees’ views of your organization don’t remain within the walls of your offices. These tools are a great asset for evaluating and modifying your employer brand message to ensure that you’ll get the right talent.
Have your employees spread the word
Your employees are your best brand ambassadors. Who better to share an authentic message about your organization than someone who sees what happens on the ground every day? A candid assessment of your workplace from the point of view of your employees will build trust in your organization and motivate potential candidates to apply and top candidates to accept job offers.
There are more than a few ways you can use your employees as brand ambassadors. Here are a few of the myriad options available:
- Bring employees to recruiting events such as job fairs and give them a chance to talk directly with potential applicants.
- Bring employees into the interview process and give interviewees a chance to speak with them.
- Maintain a blog or social media account with content contributed by employees.
- Promote blogs and social media accounts of employees.
An employer that hopes to attract the best talent needs to stand out and give potential applicants a reason to choose them in particular. A strong, authentic brand message can provide that reason. A frank display of your organization’s culture and values will build trust with potential applicants, making it a great asset for seeking talent.