In their latest Global Recruiting Trends report, LinkedIn has pointed out that companies globally are increasing their investments in employer branding. Over 59 percent of total respondents state that they have increased their spending on employer branding, and the pressure to get branding mix right has also increased. BRIC Nations have seen a rise in investments and HR professionals in India are proactively focusing on improved employer brand – to acquire, engage and retain the right talent.
Employer branding is where human resources, marketing, and talent management intersect to help attract the best talent. Given the aggressive employment landscape today, companies are in need to leverage their employer brand which will give them the competitive edge. Recruitment and retention of high caliber talent are heavily dependent on the brand of the organization. This brand identity is built on the organizational culture that is further defined by its image and perception among its stakeholders. In a fiercely competitive market, companies must offer compelling reasons to potential candidates to join their company in order to be different and prominent. A good cohesive employer brand forms a significant part for that reason. The companies who pay attention to their employer branding initiatives are able to reap its benefit from improved talent pipelines and also a wide talent pool.
Christine Mellon, Oracle Vice President of HCM transformation looks at some ways that HR professionals can use to strategically access talent through branding.
1. Identify Key Communities
Most HR departments have a varied approach when it comes to looking for the required talent. Although most of them are contextualized within the framework of the company, they usually end up being similar strategies across industries. To have an edge over the competitors, the HR department has become most important as it has the access to various niche communities. And a good brand gives the option to HR professionals to create communities -- of current employees, alumni, customers, local universities and colleges -- to source the best talent
2. Create Brand Ambassadors
A strong brand name lets a company connect with people who can act as advocates, who can share the positives of the work culture. These brand ambassadors embody the corporate identity in their demeanor, values and ethics. They can effectively reach out to prospective recruits, using different channels like social media, community engagement and referrals to drive talent acquisition.They can also help recruiters to engage potential employees with relevant content on social channels, and also tap loyal stakeholders to recruit passive talents.
3. Treat Employees as Consumers
Today, talent needs to be treated just as a consumer. As the war for talent evolves, the key is to tap them using the same modalities as that of reaching out to consumers. The company should aim to capture the loyalty of its employees through the effective use of its brand.
It is also necessary to update the recruitment processes of the company to make them more user-friendly and accessible. For example, a company’s job site needs to capture the attention of potential employees. . Applicants want an easy, clear, intuitive application process that respects their time and treats them as though they matter.
4. Show Employees a Consistent Brand
Besides having strong employer brand, it is important to maintain consistency. Many organizations fail to realize that they appear in a certain way to an individual when the latter is an applicant for a position, but the same brand experience becomes almost unrecognizable when the employee is on board. The HR departments need to create a sense where the employee is being ‘embraced’ by the talent development continuum, so she/he doesn’t experience any disconnect from one career event to the next.
An integrated talent platform is an enormous step in strengthening the impact of a good employer brand. It helps the companies craft a common look, feel, and tone across all employee interactions.
5. Tap Marketing Colleagues
Using lessons from marketing colleagues is another helpful option. How they use skills to identify and reach out to the right consumers and leverage the brand name to convert them into loyal consumers, holds important lessons for HR professionals to attract the right talent. A strong employer brand, if used strategically can yield the desired results.
This also helps in building a cohesive brand image across the stakeholders including employees and consumers. A company will attract better talents if its applicants and employees view the organization through the lens of how consumers view them.
With the current workforce dynamics, competitive business landscape and the on-going war for talent has made employer branding a business imperative now.
This article is a part of the People Matters- Oracle Let's Talk Talent series. Click here to visit the Let's talk talent page to read more such articles.