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Beyond company branding: Why your employer brand matters.

Your company branding is everywhere. It’s your face to the outside world, showing what you stand for in a clear and engaging way that helps achieve your business goals.

But what are you doing about an equally important branding effort – your employer brand?

Employer brand? But isn’t my company brand good enough? Unfortunately, no. Company brands on their own cannot do the work of employer brands. They need to work together, but their goals are different.

From a practical perspective, the lack of a strong employer brand costs time and resources. Take a look at these two facts:

  • According to Randstad US, a key consideration of employees contemplating changing employers is the quality of new hires being brought on. In a 2018 survey, 53% of people said they considered leaving their job because their employer did not recruit or retain quality employees.
  • According to the Society for Human Resource Management, companies spent an average of $4,000 to fill each open position, not including lost productivity as that person gets up to speed with the company.

In an age when recruiting and retaining top employees is increasingly difficult, have you created an employer brand that truly showcases and differentiates your company’s values, work environment, and career path?


The Art and Science of Creating an Employer Brand

Sophisticated and successful organizations know that creating an employer brand is both an art and science. Here’s the secret: You cannot create a positive employer brand experience without reflecting both inward and outward.

Current employees are just too savvy to fall for a catchy tagline that does not resonate with their reality. And prospective employees – the great ones you want to recruit – want an employer brand that excites, resonates, and most importantly, demonstrates the heart of a company.

By gathering insights that reflect inward and outward, you are able to create a meaningful Employee Value Proposition (EVP) that aligns with the vision of your stakeholders, which can then be used to create an employer brand experience.


How to Reflect Inward and Outward

Reflecting inward is not very different from when you are personally gathering insights into your own strengths and weaknesses. You seek and compare different points of view to better understand how people see you. In employer branding, you gather feedback from current employees across the company reflecting differences in demographics, length of service, and geography.

The best way to obtain this data is through research techniques such as one-on-one interviews, focus groups, observation, and employee surveys. We get a clear picture of your mission, values, culture, and personality. Because our research team is not part of the company, we are often able to obtain candid perspectives and view them through an unbiased lens.

Among the questions we may ask employees are:

  • What gives you the most satisfaction working at Company X?
  • What keeps you from taking your talents to another company?
  • What surprised you after you came to work at Company X?
  • What frustrates you about working at Company X?
  • What would you say to someone interested in joining Company X?

Reflecting outward means getting a clear worldview of your brand from prospective employees, customers, and competitive data. In addition to interviews, focus groups and surveys, an exhaustive search of how your company brand is viewed through Internet searches can be helpful. Add in the most current generational research to understand the changing values about life and work, and you can get a pretty clear picture of your company and the environment surrounding it.


Creating Your Employer Brand

Once your EVP is established based on a collaborative process between a company and its external partner, it is time to turn it over to a top-notch creative team. At BNO, we have established four critical criteria to create an extraordinary employer brand experience.

  1. Likeable – Does your brand promise connect with candidates and do they like what they hear? Do they like what they experience through your online and social presence?
  2. Believable – Is your message authentic and will prospective and current employees find it credible in the workplace? Does it also help set expectations for employee performance or alignment of purpose?
  3. Ownable – Is your message unique in the space? Does it distinguish your company from the competition, helping you stand apart?
  4. Memorable – Will candidates be able to recall why your message was compelling when they’re ready to engage?

There is no hard and fast formula for Employer Brands; each requires unique insight to develop a compelling EVP. Partnering with the right creative agency will ensure you ignite recruiting and articulate pride with current employees. Visit our website to learn how we can help you tell your most authentic brand story and attract your best candidates.