Is Your Employer Brand as Hot as the Job Market?
With the unemployment rate at a half-century low, employers are scrambling to attract good employees. For the first time in years, there are more open positions than job seekers in the United States. Organizations are beginning to invest heavily in their employer brands and create content and other tools designed to entice top talent to join their teams.
What Is an Employer Brand?
An employer brand is the public image you create for your organization’s workplace culture. It incorporates what employees think, feel, and communicate to others about your organization as a place to work. Branding your workplace culture is just as critical to your recruitment objectives as branding your consumer products is to your business objectives.
Strong employer brands:
- Demonstrate that an organization is a great place to work
- Help organizations stand out as an employer of choice
- Reinforce company culture and boost morale and employer affinity among current employees
In effect, strong employer brands enhance recruiting efforts and give organizations a leg up in the battle for top talent.
Defining Your Employer Brand Position
To attract the best employees, you need a strong employer brand. To develop a strong employer brand, you first need to define your employer brand position. Your employer brand position refers to the specific meaning and ideas you want your target job candidates to associate with your organization as an employer. More precisely, an employer brand’s position articulates why it is superior to other organizations in the marketplace in terms of employment opportunities.
Ideally, an employer brand’s position is grounded in insight about the goals and perceptions of a targeted group of job candidates. The result is a vision for the employer brand that should be shared throughout the organization, helping to guide strategy around recruitment efforts, including informing the recruitment content you create like job descriptions, the messages you communicate, and even things like the careers page on your website, the welcome experience you offer new hires, and the swag you give away to employees. Job candidates should see the end result of your positioning statement in your recruitment efforts, and existing employees should feel the effects of your positioning statement in their day-to-day
The Parts of a Positioning Statement
An employer brand position should contain the following components:
- The target, or a brief description of your ideal candidates in term of identifying characteristics such as demographics and psychographics.
- A frame of reference, or a statement of the target’s goal that will be served by working for your organization.
- The points of difference, or an assertion regarding why your organization is superior to competitors in the same frame of reference. This may include functional or emotional benefits.
- Reasons to believe, or supporting evidence for claims related to the frame of reference and the points of difference.
Developing Content That Aligns with Your Employer Brand Position
After you’ve defined your employer brand position, you’ll want to create content that leverages your organization’s best asset: your happy employees. Interviews with interesting, passionate employees can become the backbone of your employer brand and communicate your desired position. Good employer brand content is developed by identifying employees that are strong representatives of your organization and reflective of the types of candidates you want to attract and then using them as the subjects of content that support the ideas in your employer brand position. In many cases, effective employer branding content takes the form of employee profiles, where the representative employee becomes the subject of written or video Q&A. In other instances, it’s appropriate to have representative employees write content (or have an agency ghostwrite content for them) that creatively demonstrates the ideas inherent to your positioning statement.
Distributing Employer Brand Content
Once your employee profiles has been created, it should be distributed on a variety of platforms, all in alignment with your employer brand position. Typically, content is distributed on your organization’s website or talent brand website; through social media platforms like LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram; on job boards; via email marketing to potential candidates and recruits; and internally on your organization’s intranet to promote your talent brand inside of your organization.
With a well thought out employer brand in place, you’ll be one step ahead of your competitors (i.e., all other employers seeking to fill job vacancies) in the ongoing competition for top talent.
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