Guest blog: Employer branding

The what, why and how of employer branding

While companies are starting to get their heads around what employer branding is, why it’s important and how it differs from (and yet complements) corporate branding, few are getting it right. And some organizations are struggling to know where to start. But I get it.

There is so much being written about candidate experience, personas, journey mapping, ATSs, employee advocacy etc. Often employer branding ends up confusing the hell out of Talent Acquisition and Recruitment, HR, and Communications or Marketing teams. They don’t know where to begin, and/or narrowly focus on their own perceived part of the pie. As a result, employer branding ends up being confined to either the ‘too hard’ or ‘another meeting needed’ pile. Lots of conversation, little action.

As employer branding professionals we need to be leading the charge on addressing the three biggest issues affecting its success. These are:

1.     Mindset of senior leadership

2.     Silo’d thinking

3.     Industry cohesion

So what can we start doing, right now? All the below require little or no budget…

Mindset of senior leadership

a. Strategic thinking – Link the employer brand strategy and associated activities to the delivery of the business strategy. If senior leadership see this, they will sit up and take notice.

b. Go armed with data – Show execs the numbers, educate them on the trends and emerging themes, and provide insights that drive action.

c. Clearly outline the why, what and how for senior leadership engagement and role modelling – Too many of them don’t understand any one or all of these.

Silo’d thinking

a. Communication – Talk to your people. Talk to your Talent Acquisition and Recruitment, HR, Communications and Marketing colleagues. They will tell you what your EVP really is. Ask questions, seek opinions and listen intentionally. Keep doing this.

b. Cooperation – Accept you won’t have all the answers and neither will your agency. Go and find internal experts who can help you and involve them from the start.

c. Collaboration – When you’ve found these experts, get them involved in creating the solutions – not just the design of your EVP, but the activation and ongoing embedding.

An EVP needs to be a combined, holistic and integrated effort between the Recruitment, HR and Communications teams. Find out why from Simon’s recent presentation.

Industry cohesion

a. Sharing is caring – This is an incredible industry with fiercely passionate people doing amazing work. Let’s share as many of our successes, and fails, with each other as we can.

b. Reach out for help – Don’t be afraid to ask for help. We’re all learning. Chances are someone, somewhere will have a similar challenge to you. Crowdsource. Co-create the solution. No one does it on their own.

c. Stand proud – We are all ambassadors for employer branding. Be unashamed when you talk about it with your colleagues, family and friends.

So there you have it, 9 quick tips you can start doing today for a little less conversation and a little more action on employer branding.

Simon Rutter leads the development and implementation of Takeda’s employer brand in the UK and around the world.

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Many thanks to Simon, Global Strategic Employer Brand and Communications Director, at Takeda for his insight into employer branding. At ClearVoice™, we are experts in delivering employee communications and engagement solutions. We inspire, motivate and transform your workforce to increase your company’s productivity and profits. For more information on successfully developing your employer brand, call or email us today and let us show you how an employee value proposition can boost your organisation.