Your company offers competitive pay and benefits, a generous retirement plan, and unlimited paid time off. Your employees – many of them long-term – wouldn’t dream of working anywhere else, and the job opportunity you just posted outlines a clear path for growth. However, why aren’t job seekers lining up for the interviews? Why aren’t you able to fill that job which many people aspire to take?
The challenge is not about having an employer brand strategy but taking the right approach to building your employer brand and most importantly, talking about it. How do you communicate about your employer brand matters?
In a recent webcast by People Matters and Indeed, Maximizing employer brand to maximize engagement, Harshvendra Soin, Global Chief People Officer, and Head-Marketing, Tech Mahindra, and Rohan Sylvester, Recruitment Evangelist, Indeed.com shared key lessons on the right approach to building your employer brand and most importantly, talk about it.
Here is an excerpt from the conversation:
Act through purpose, care, and trust
Quoting Maya Angelou, People will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel, Harshvendra shared that as we go through the new normal, organizations learned that there are certain non-negotiables, which include holistic well-being, psychological safety, and meaningful work, has taken the centre stage. Remote working, flexibility in working hours, and increase in gig workforce have further altered the dimensions of the work and workplaces which cannot be ignored. Organizations will have to act for their employees. In the post-pandemic world, candidates and talent will look up to organizations that act with purpose, care, trust, and beyond themselves.
Aligned with Harshvendra’s thought, Rohan commented, “Companies are increasingly becoming aware of how their acts are impacting the society at large and it gives existing employees and potential job seekers a sense of connection and alignment with the brand.”
Employer brand is more than fun workplaces and other tangible benefits
Commenting on the shift in employer branding, Rohan said that with the pandemic we observed a huge shift in employee mindset around things and issues that are important to them. For example, a lot of employer branding efforts that we used to see in the past before COVID-19 were around the facilities, the campuses, the office space, the physical and tangible benefits that you would get by working for an organization
However, today, the more important thing for a candidate is “what can a company do to support his/her employees in times of crisis?” Candidates today are looking for values in an organization.
Inclusion can play a great role in building your brand.
For candidates today, values, culture, and commitment to D&I are as important as pay and benefits. The pandemic acted as a boon to creating an uptick in D&I initiatives with organizations acknowledging the fact that diversity is no longer a good thing to do but a business imperative. Diversity brings innovative solutions which are important for our customers and to create a competitive edge in the ecosystem. Harsh shared, “Ensuring everyone is treated equally, with dignity, and has their fair share of resources (whether that be access to work or equitable pay) is simply the right thing to do and create business impact.” Inclusion of different communities, thoughts, gig workers, etc. is a key to determining how an organization is seen by applicants, interviewees, employees, and other stakeholders.
Rohan shares, “ People will join your organization if they will feel valued and safe, and are empowered to share their opinions.
Update your brand story
Gone are the days when you could wow candidates with impersonal perks or office spaces. The Internet has leveled up the playing field. Today every organization has an opportunity to showcase its brand story that is compelling, and attractive to job seekers. It is a level playing field, regardless of the size of the company. With remote working, job seekers are increasingly researching about companies they are applying for, and hence, it becomes critical for organizations to update their brand story. If your brand story is outdated or if you have negative reviews that have been left unaddressed, your brand is likely to get hit.
Using data to accelerate branding outcomes
There's an old proverb that says, The best time to plant a tree was 20 years ago. The second best time to plant a tree is today. Tracking employer branding efforts, progress, and outcomes are critical to its success and most organizations are lagging in it.
For example, every time someone interacts with your company’s career page, it is an opportunity to convince them to apply to your organization’s open role. So, if you're not tracking these conversations we don't know if the employer branding strategy is working or not.
Lastly, one important key takeaway from the session was, “Employer branding is not just an HR function!” Employer branding needs to be a collaborative effort that needs to be driven by leadership, however, each employee carries the ownership of being a brand ambassador for its organization. And this can only happen if organizations are clear about its value and ready to communicate about it by being completely authentic.