In this era of digitization, news spreads fast. In the case of businesses, any positive or negative information about them can affect their reputation and their chances of finding talent.
75% of job seekers consider an employer’s brand before they apply for a job. And 96% of employers believe that their employer brand and reputation can positively or negatively impact revenue.
So how can businesses use their employer brand to positively impact their recruitment strategy? Let’s explore through this blog post.
What is Employer Branding?
Employer branding is the reputation that an organization builds as a workplace among the workforce, peers, and employees. It is how an organization markets itself in the industry to attract and retain top talent.
A good company always works to maintain and uphold its reputation for the products and services they offer. In addition to that, employer branding demands that they also hold the responsibility of building a strong image as a great employer.
Since your brand or image isn’t entirely in your hands to control, it can demand constant work and thought from you. You have to consistently show efforts and display your abilities to the right audience that can help attract a wider pool of talent from potentially all over the world.
Here is an image that perfectly describes 10 aspects that make up an organization’s employer branding, highlighting how much of it is in their control and how much you can influence:
Take a look at Google, for example. Google has been ahead of others in capitalizing on the benefits of having a great employer brand. People from all over the world laud their inclusive policy, supportive environment, and employee perks.
Even if what we see now has been a result of years of dedicated work toward fostering and maintaining their work culture, they were still way ahead of others in doing so.
In a candidate-driven market, it is becoming increasingly challenging to attract the right talent before it goes to your competitors. As information becomes easily accessible, hiring is becoming increasingly competitive. The employer brand is now a critical part of the hiring and retention process.
Over the last few years, employers have quickly realized the importance of having positive employer branding. 59% of recruiting leaders worldwide are investing more in employer brands. Many have started working on an employer branding strategy to create a positive brand name consistently.
What are the Benefits of Having a Strong Employer Branding Strategy?
A well-crafted employer branding strategy can help any business influence the perceptions of job seekers. This step only can help employers gain a substantial competitive advantage over others in the market by creating a unique brand identity.
Today’s digitally native millennials want to work for employers who they can relate with. Employers who are agile, digital, flexible, and provide space for innovation are the ones that the workforce today would pick rather than a boring 9-5 desk job with minimal perks.
52% of candidates first seek out the company's sites and then social media to learn more about an employer, according to Linkedin.
Hence, to create employer brand awareness, it’s imperative to have digital employer branding or an online presence that your future employees or clients would want to check out before working with you.
They will want to check what your current employees have to say about your company. Employer review websites like Glassdoor are most often visited during the job application period.
Here are the key benefits of having a strong employer branding strategy:
1. Attract Quality Talent Pool
80% of talent acquisition managers believe that employer branding has a significant impact on the ability to hire great talent. The employer brand helps you attract, engage, and retain the best individuals in your organization.
When your employees know that they are working for an organization that values them and respects them, they will automatically hold higher respect and regard for you and develop a sense of loyalty.
This will lead them to spread a good word about you, which, in turn, will help you attract a larger pool of talent. A strong talent brand leads to 2.5x more applicants per job post on LinkedIn.
Along with that, LinkedIn’s Global Recruiting Trends Report 2017 revealed that 48% of respondents believe that employee referrals are the top channel for employers to get quality hires.
2. Improve Retention
Another benefit of employer branding is a low turnover rate. 38% of employers ranked retention rate as the top metric to track the effects of employer branding in a study done by Linkedin.
Your employer brand should reflect your work culture, the work environment, and the opportunities for your employees’ growth. A great source of motivation for your current and potential employees could be a healthy working environment and ample opportunities for personal and professional development.
If you can successfully convey that to the workforce, that will enable you to find the right individuals that fit in your organization.
3. Reduce Time to Fill
“The more time you spend in your funnel, the more resources you spend.” - Sanjoe Tom Jose, CEO at Talview
The same study by Linkedin highlighted that the time to hire employees was 1-2x faster than average when they started focussing on their employer branding.
A direct result of effective employer branding strategies is the generation of huge talent pools by streamlining the kind of talent that applies to work with you and at the same time improving your application process.
The recruitment process is an enormous task that incurs costs and requires a lot of effort from the Human Resources team. Having an effective employer branding strategy in recruitment helps you attract job seekers and reduces the time required to fill a position.
How Can You Enhance Your Employer Branding Strategy?
Here are some tips for you to create or upgrade your employer branding strategy to stand out among job seekers and improve your hiring experience:
1. Create a Seamless Remote Hiring Process
Your recruitment process should be a reflection of your employer's brand. Since it is the first touch-point of any candidate to your organization, you should make sure you can reflect your culture and values in your recruitment process.
The traditional hiring methods take way too long and can put off many of your potential employees from applying to your company. Gen Zs have grown up with technology around them and will look for employers who understand and implement that mindset. Hence, having a remote hiring process becomes attractive for the younger workforce.
You can start with sourcing through social media or a recruitment chatbot integrated into your main careers page. A chatbot can also be used to create automated workflows containing assessments and asynchronous video interviews to help candidates start their application process right away.
A candidate taking a video interview on the Talview platform
Apart from that, a must-have for employers today is to invest in recruitment software or tools that enable you to hold online pre-recruitment assessments and online video interviews. A lot of time is wasted in coordinating when both parties are free for an offline assessment and interview.
In this process, even if you get hundreds of candidates to attempt the assessment, only a few handfuls qualify for the next round, wasting hours of the recruiter’s productive time. Automating these steps will optimize your assessment process and give the applicants a taste of how it will be to work with you.
If you want to learn more about various ways and benefits of moving to a remote hiring process, read our complete guide to successful remote hiring.
2. Improve Candidate Experience
One big step to improving your employer branding comprises enhancing your interaction with candidates or the candidate experience. From the time they see your job ad or read about you until they are recruited or rejected by you, you have a huge opportunity to provide every applicant with a smooth and friendly conversation and enhance your brand name.
For instance, making sure you reply to all applicants regardless of their qualifications will convey how you value a person’s every point of contact and time. You don’t want to keep people hanging and make their only contact with you a bitter experience.
Similarly, clear and direct communication, constant touch through emails or festival wishes, and guiding them through different qualification rounds will convey that you value their time and interest in you.
Having a digital or mobile assessment and interview processes are the next big steps to improvining the candidate experience. Instead of having a tedious pen and paper tests, a mobile hiring process gives the candidate the flexibility to attend an assessment or interview from anywhere at any time, thus, establishing a great candidate experience.
Providing the right experience to candidates from sourcing to onboarding can turn your candidates into your brand ambassadors. It can help organizations:
- Create Brand Loyalty
- Create a Bottom Line
- Influence Retention and Attraction Rates
- Encourage Referrals
3. Have an Active and Engaging Digital/Social Media Presence
"Social media channels serve as a window into company culture... 21% of candidates who want to get a sense of company culture use Facebook to browse through photos and content on the site...”, according to Jobvite.
In the era of digitization, it is mandated to have an active social media presence for your company. Today, the workforce will look up the organization they want to work for on the Internet to know more about the culture, the work, the people, and the employers.
In this case, your current employees can be your biggest advocates. Encourage them to share their experience with their network on social media channels like LinkedIn, Facebook, and Twitter, or leave reviews on Glassdoor. Utilize storytelling and share their stories on your career page for candidates to see what it would be like to work in a specific position to build a cohesive image of you as an employer.
For example, Microsoft has a Facebook careers page called Microsoft Life, where they post about their employees, their stories and experiences, and live interviews with their recruiters who answer potential candidates’ questions. This is a great way for a company to communicate with potential candidates.
Engage potential talent by regularly updating social media channels and increase the probability of the right-fit talent entering your recruitment funnel.
4. Cultivate Company Culture/Values
59% of respondents used social media to research the company culture of organizations they were interested in.
A company’s culture reflects in everything they do — office layout, work-life balance, management style, dress code, employee perks and benefits, etc.
Your organization’s core values and how your employees perceive the work culture comprises your culture, and it is a vital aspect for job seekers when they look for a suitable job.
No culture is perfect, but you need to make sure that you can communicate your culture correctly. It can be through social media platforms, through your employees and their storytelling, or through events that you host.
One happy employee will praise you among all their friends and build trust among them. Brand advocacy is one of the best ways to spread the right brand image in the market.
Some of the things that you can do to get started on building a company culture that will speak for your brand name are:-
- Put your employees first
- Hold annual or bi-annual feedback surveys
- Be transparent
- Encourage an empathetic environment
- Appreciate your employees
Take the example of Airbnb. They have photo tours of their offices and candid photos of real employees on their careers page. They share their mission, core values, and benefits and also have a helpful FAQ page for prospective employees.
5. Foster an Inclusive Work Environment
83% of millennials are actively engaged when they believe an organization fosters an inclusive culture.
To create a strong employer brand, it's critical today that you show your commitment to building diverse teams. Being inclusive means hiring people for their skills without being prejudiced against their gender, race, culture, ideologies, background, etc.
It is necessary to cultivate a positive employer brand by ensuring you are extending your brand's reach to new groups of people. Apart from the many benefits of having diverse teams, you will gain a substantial competitive advantage against your rivals. Potential employees would love to be a part of an unbiased organization.
“Diversity within a workplace means more than just demographics. It is a combination of acceptance, respect, and teamwork. It is what enables a vibrant, creative and thriving workplace.”
Building an employer brand strategy is something that will take time and effort. It requires you to understand your potential candidates, your future talent pool, and your employees, along with how you want to be perceived as an organization. Once put in place, a solid employer brand strategy can help companies in more ways than one.
- Everything You Need to Know About Employer Branding - Hubspot
- LinkedIn Data Proves the Impact of a Strong Talent Brand - LinkedIn
- Global Recruiting Trends 2017 - LinkedIn
- Job Seeker Nation Study - Jobvite
- The Ultimate List of Employer Brand Statistics - LinkedIn
- The Radical Transformation of Diversity and Inclusion The Millennial Influence - Deloitte