If it’s not your goal to promote your business as an attractive employer, why not? In today’s increasingly competitive candidate market, what your existing and potential employees think of your company as a place to work is essential. What do you think they would say to their family and friends about you? Let’s face it; it’s much easier to recruit top talent if the company in question has a good reputation. Some businesses attract the best of the best … it’s how they attract the star candidates in the first place that’s important. You can gain inspiration from this and apply it to your employer brand strategy.

You have to stand out if you want to attract the best applicants. A strong external employer branding strategy focuses its energy on creating a positive image to the general public as an employer, with the ultimate goal of attracting the best candidates.

 

Why Your Business Needs An Effective Employer Brand Strategy

External employer branding can also help demonstrate a positive candidate experience with potential applicants. Whether it’s the experience of an employee’s challenge that has been overcome or the general culture within an organisation, employer branding can go a long way in establishing insight into what it would be like to work for the business before they’ve even applied for the job. This helps build employee loyalty which only supports the recruitment process.

 

Over the past year, the UK has experienced record highs in vacancies across various sectors. Our recent Labour Market Insights Report also indicated how this now means that candidates have more choices than ever when selecting new roles. Job seekers should be treated like valued customers – with increasing competition, your powers of persuasion have never been so important. If you don’t identify why job seekers should work for you and shout it from the rooftops, you’re at risk of being overshadowed by your louder competitors. A basic job ad with endless amounts of mundane text won’t cut it in today’s job market; you have to sell your business to the candidate. Consider your business a product that you are selling to a customer.

Here are the reasons why you want a strong employer brand strategy:

  • attracts new talent and makes them want to stay;
  • reduces recruitment costs;
  • increases employee engagement and productivity.

It’s a no brainer.

Employer branding is the answer to your recruitment problems. The Undercover Recruiter even states that “recruiting is becoming more like marketing” (1), and the most effective companies at attracting the super-talented (Google, Starbucks we’re looking at you) are nailing their employer brand strategies. Google, identified as the “Rockstars” of employer branding (2), with “Hollywood production” style marketing campaigns, excellent benefits packages, and desirable company culture, consistently attract millions of applicants. Similarly, Starbucks is also known for its incredibly effective marketing communication strategy, inspiring other businesses to shape their employer brand efforts.

 

What can we learn from employer brand strategies that may not be as effective? Take a look at builtin.com, which highlights examples of big brands where a rebrand has perhaps not been as successful as they had hoped (3). The takeaways are vital in helping businesses with their employer branding efforts. Do you understand what candidates want? After all, it’s a candidate market out there.

 

Make Sure You Constantly Review Your Employer Brand Strategy

An effective employer brand strategy requires constant nurturing. What’s working now may not necessarily continue to work. All it takes is a disgruntled employee or a negative piece of press to damage your employer brand. It’s vital to ensure that your strategy is constantly evaluated and reviewed. This blog has already highlighted the powerful position of those applying for jobs … Are you attracting candidates? Are you attracting the right candidates? Are they hanging around? Are their needs and wants being met or even exceeded? If not, it may be time to tweak your employer branding efforts. View it as a long-term relationship, not a fling.

 

Let Cogito Do The Hard Work For You

Few businesses understand how to create and implement an effective employer brand strategy, often considering it costly and time-consuming. Enter Cogito Employer Brand … we can do the hard work for you. We offer a range of services to support our clients in understanding and improving their employer brand. These include:

 

  • Employer Brand Health Check and Audit – For many potential candidates, the first exposure they may have to a business is their careers site – this makes it essential that the content is relevant and engaging to the reader. A quality careers site is mainly influential in a candidate’s decision to make an application, meaning those who fail to act on this are risking losing out on the best talent. Our Employer Brand Health Check and Audit service provides clients with a comprehensive breakdown of the performance of their own careers site and a comparison to their competitors. Identifying the best practices in terms of careers site content empowers businesses in improving their Brand Development & Activation. This can also support Employer Brand Management.
  • External Audience Interviews – An essential aspect of quality Employer Brand Management is by making branding an ongoing process. For many of our clients, understanding how they are perceived in the market is invaluable in shaping their future branding strategies. Our skilled researchers are experienced in carrying out external audience telephone interviews that ask potential candidates the critical questions that our clients wish to know about how they are viewed in the market.
  • Employee Interviews – Engaged employees are the greatest advocates of a business. It only makes sense for hiring managers who wish to advertise their roles to understand what current employees think of the company. This can help establish insights about working for the business that may not have already been known. This does not always have to be a review of a company either – job seekers are known to value openness about the challenges they may encounter in a role before applying, as this means that there are less likely to be any surprises. This often works in our clients’ favour also, as this helps establish a transparent and usually authentic Employer Value Proposition.
  • Focus Groups – While employee interviews are an effective way of producing quality testimonials, focus groups facilitate the ability for employees to share their experiences and perceptions from the course of employment with the business. For this reason, employees can bounce ideas off each other, which often results in a higher quality of response from employees. Similar to Employer Interviews, this helps establish an authentic Employer Value Proposition that hiring managers may not have considered previously. Of course, this will only support future employee recruitment and retention efforts.

Get in touch with Cogito Employer Brand today to find out how we can help you create and implement an effective employer brand strategy.

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