brandAs the war for talent intensifies, employers need every advantage to attract and retain key talent. Building a strong employer brand is becoming strategically more important for employers to differentiate themselves from other organizations competing for the same talent pool. ETS can be a key partner in developing and maintaining your employer brand and can provide crucial feedback to employers who want to strengthen their brand.

An employer brand is the market perception of what it’s like to work for an organization. In other words, it’s the image that your prospective, current and past employees have in their minds about the employment experience at your company.

Branding differentiates your company from competitors by sending messages to people that help them understand why you’re the best in your market.The strategic advantage of positioning your company as a place people enjoy and want to be, will not only attract more candidates but help win the fight for top talent.

Job Seekers Look for Branding

Companies with successful employer brands take stock in their online communications from social media to their company website, as they understand that job seekers are looking for and listening to these messages.

The Society for Human Resource Management listed focus on employer branding as a top trend for 2016 hiring practices and points out that many job seekers won’t even apply to a company if they can’t find enough information about it online. In a survey of over 200 HR professionals and over 1,300 employed and unemployed professionals, CareerArc discovered that 75% of job seekers consider an employer’s brand before even applying for a job.

This survey also showed that despite its benefits and today’s trends, only 57% of employers say they have an employer brand strategy.

Benefits of a strong employer brand:

  • Attract the right people to your organization
  • Compete on a dimension other than solely compensation
  • Set expectations and improve retention
  • Luring the best job applicants

Creating a Strong Employer Brand

Creating and maintaining an effective employer brand requires a consistent and clear set of guidelines that include:  

  • Researching your target candidates
  • Reviewing your competitors’ employer brands
  • Defining, then feeding your culture
  • Living your values
  • Knowing your biggest selling point
  • Successfully executing and positioning the brand
  • Welcoming feedback and engaging in the conversation

When you have a strong and strategic employment brand, it accomplishes the following:

  • Creates a sense of urgency and excitement about working for your company
  • Engages the mind, heart & dreams of candidates
  • Complements your company’s products and/or services
  • Provides a clear, compelling reason to work at your organization
  • Aligns with what your current employees believe it’s like to work for you
  • Evokes feelings of fun, prestige, challenge or rewards

Where to Begin

Complete an employer brand assessment:

  • The Self Assessment: Why did you join the organization? What do you enjoy most about working at your company?
  • The Logo Test: Go to your website and cover up your company logo. Look at the images on the pages and read through the text. Could this be any number of companies in the local area or in your industry? Or is this clearly a unique company, with a strong culture and a clear message?
  • The Employee Check: Do you get employee referrals? What do your employees tell their friends and prospective candidates about working for your company?
  • The Candidate Survey: During your interview be sure to ask the interviewee why they applied to your position. Do they mention anything that relates to your employment brand, such as your company culture or work environment? If so, why do these characteristics resonate with them?
  • ETS as an External Platform – To create a complete view of employee sentiment, not to mention a truly authentic employer brand, there needs to be a conversation occurring beyond the company’s direct moderation. ETS can provide this external platform using frequent candidate touchpoints to present organic, real-time employee feedback to your management team.

The most important aspect of creating an employer brand is being honest. If you want to find the right people, you have to be honest about who you are. If you have enough accurate information out there that conveys your company’s core values and promotes its culture in a positive light, it will attract the right candidates more effectively.

Between social media, job boards, company career sites and word of mouth, managing a brand across multiple platforms is a lot to handle – but we can help! When you partner with ETS, clients automatically gain access to our extensive marketing efforts; developing tailored job ads, maintaining job boards, and working as your ambassadors – telling your story to our deep pool of candidates.