According to studies, 47% of Millennials intend to leave their jobs in the next two years. Replacing a full-time employee could cost up to two times their annual salary. Today, employee turnover has become a nagging challenge for enterprises. And it is not all about the cost either.
Retaining staff and attracting good talent is crucial for business growth. When done right, it could become an important competitive advantage for your company. This is why many enterprises are pouring money, time, and resources into employer branding.
But what exactly does it mean, and how can you create a successful employer branding strategy for your organization? Here is what you need to know.
What Is Employer Branding?
In simple terms, employer branding is about building your business’s brand reputation as an employer.
When you are marketing a product to customers, you emphasize product features and other critical information to demonstrate why customers should purchase it. You will use various branding techniques to make your product more attractive so it can stand out from the competition and grab the audience’s attention.
Employer branding is much similar. It is designed to emphasize what makes your organization a great place to work by making it appealing to existing and future employees. An effectively crafted strategy will boost staff motivation, lower turnover, and attract the best talent in the market.
Creating a Successful Employer Branding Strategy
Here is how you can position your organization to attract and retain the best employees with successful employer branding.
Develop an Employee Value Proposition
This is the essential starting point of your employer branding strategy. But before you get started, carry out an audit of employee sentiments to assess where you are at right now. An employee survey will help identify how your staff feels about their workplace, culture, work environment, perks, processes, and management. Track attrition levels and conduct exit interviews when employees leave.
Also, research online to understand the general perception of your employer brand among past and present employees. Assess your findings and determine your organization’s core strengths and where improvements are required.
Then develop your employee value proposition (EVP) by incorporating quantitative and qualitative value your organization brings to the table. It does not always need to be monetary. Identify what makes your organization unique—it could be the culture, business philosophy, or management style.
The EVP you develop should also serve the needs of the targeted employee segments. Social responsibility and work-life balance, for instance, are important for Millennial and Gen Z employees. According to Deloitte, 44% of Gen Zs have turned down assignments due to ethical concerns, while 34% of Millennials have rejected organizations that did not align with their personal values. Identifying your employees’ priorities is, therefore, critical for a successful EVP.
At the same time, your EVP must align with your company’s vision, mission statement, and values, too. It should also be honest and accurate, not a bloated promise your organization could struggle to deliver.
Many companies hire experienced consultants to help them with this process. You can search for an expert on Leadar or ask your LinkedIn network for a recommendation.
Set Objectives and Goals
Next, consider what you want to achieve in the medium and long term. Is it to increase retention? If so, by what percentage and within which period? Make your goals SMART by ensuring they are specific, measurable, achievable, relevant, and time-bound. Assign clear key performance indicators to track progress.
You can set several achievable goals that vary between the medium- and long-term for your employer branding strategy.
Create a Communication Plan
Start by considering the profile of the talent you want to attract. Identify which communication mediums could best help you reach them. Develop your messages around the employee value proposition. Then make your presence visible with a strong communication plan.
An effective employee communication plan must address both internal and external stakeholders—i.e., present employees and potential candidates.
Internal communications will capture your emails, intranet, posters, and all other internal channels. Employee engagement activities are another major component of this.
External communications can cover your website, social media, recruitment campaigns, and a variety of other tools. Assign a dedicated section for employer brand building on your website. It is typically the first point of contact for potential employees. Therefore, information should be accurate, up-to-date, and engaging.
Social media is another impactful medium for brand positioning. Use it effectively with targeted campaigns.
Walk the Talk
A beautifully crafted EVP and an eye-catching campaign are not going to help you achieve your goals if you fail to deliver what you have promised. Demonstrating your commitment to the EVP through action is important. It is the only way to build trust and establish credibility.
This may require you to review employee processes, policies, compensation, and rewards to align them with your brand promise. You will also need to train your teams to integrate key brand behaviors into your company culture and work practices. For example, your HR team should be trained in creating the right first impression and a memorable experience for candidates during recruitment interviews.
Commitment from the top is vital, too, for a successful rollout. The senior management team should ideally take the lead and be seen as champions of the employee value proposition.
Implementing a successful employer branding strategy will take time. It could practically take anywhere from 6 to 12 months.
Tracking progress is essential during this period to ensure it is rolled out as intended. It will also equip you to measure the effectiveness of each activity and make incremental improvements.
Retaining employees and attracting the best talent is critical for business success. It will help reduce costs, provide a competitive advantage, and create a positive impression of your organization. Besides, happy employees make excellent brand advocates. So, it makes every sense to work on your employer branding strategy.
Start by developing your employee value proposition. Then set objectives and goals and create an internal and external communication plan. But walking the talk is equally vital for building credibility. So, align and gear your teams to deliver your employer promise. Finally, measure progress to ensure a successful rollout.