Employer branding seems to be the buzz-word of the decade. But what exactly is employer branding, and why is it important? In this article, we answer those questions and show why employer branding is more than just a new trend: it is essential to attract and retain the talent your company needs in this competitive world.
What is employer branding?
An employer brand describes what it is like to be an employee in a company. Similar to product branding, it provides a quality standard that communicates good reputation and value.
Simply this is what people – job seekers as well as employees – think of you and your company. And of course, they share their opinion with their friends and family. It is very similar to product branding. We can invest millions in advertising our brand, but if we do not deliver what we promise, our brand will flop. The same goes for employer branding. Unless we work hard and treat employees as well as job seekers right, the word will spread and harm the value of our employer brand.
Who’s responsible for employer branding?
If we say employer branding helps attracting and retaining talent, it might seem that it’s HR who benefit from it, so it is their responsibility. But saying it is HR’s responsibility is like saying that building the brand is the sole responsibility of marketing department, which we all know is not true as it is a joint venture by the whole company. We can honestly say the same for employer branding, everyone should care about it and give as much effort as they possibly can. However, as in all parts of business, someone should be in the lead and we think it’s safe to say this should be HR.
What is Involved in Employer Branding?
Employer branding has to ensure consistency throughout a prospective employee’s experience. This involves careers sites, job descriptions, advertisements and the application and interview process.
A consistent message that is actively maintained is also necessary over social media. Job seekers who want to know about your company will ask around, check the internet and read all comments.
Word of mouth is still valuable. Employer branding is maintained when an employee honestly praises the company. It demonstrates that working for you is what is says on the tin.
While we may focus first on attracting talent, equally important it is retaining them and keeping them motivated.
Last but not least employer branding will also support the product brand. If the company has a very good image, this will also reflect on their products.
Why is employer branding so important?
We mentioned that employer branding helps the recruiting, employee engagement and retention. We are aware of talent shortage. So, unless you have a strong brand, there is a slim chance that the best talents will be ready to come to you.
If we look at figures, LinkedIn reports the following benefits when employer brands are used well:
- A faster hiring time.
- 50% more qualified applicants.
- A reduction in hiring cost of 50%.
- 28% reduction in staff turnover.
So next time you say, “We know that the hiring process should be shorter and we should keep the candidates informed, but there is nothing we can do,” – yes, you can. If you don ‘t, there is a competitor who is not only aware of that, but acts that way – which means they will steal the talent right from under your nose.
Article written by Jana Terčelj, CFR Global Executive Search Serbia
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