Have you ever dreamed of working in a particular place or company and why? Perhaps you've never been there and don't even know how many people work there. You only have an idea of this job. If so, it means that the company you dreamed about has a very good PR. In other words - employer branding is important to her and she can create it effectively.
Employer branding what's that?
Simply put, employer branding is building the brand and image of the employer in the eyes of employees of a given company and potential candidates. Depending on who we mainly address individual activities, we distinguish two types:
Internal employer branding are activities aimed at the company's currently employed employees. It consists in creating a friendly working environment and taking care of a good atmosphere. It is also about providing employees with opportunities for promotion and development. In the case of typical executive positions, to indicate that loyalty to the employer is appreciated and pays off. When it comes to employer branding activities, examples could be multiplied. These can be various types of extras, for example internships or other benefits. These can also be training courses, allowing you to gain new qualifications, or external training and work in attractive places. You can also support clubs and employee organizations.
An employee as an internal customer - this is how he should be treated. Especially now, when we observe a high demand for an employee, when we are dealing with an employee's market. Candidates with knowledge and experience are particularly sought after by employers. However, getting such an employee is quite difficult, because such people usually already have a good job and are not necessarily looking for a new one. Internal marketing consists in recognizing the needs and expectations of employees so as to motivate them better and give them more satisfaction from their work.
Managing relations within the company in the era of increasing competition for employees turns out to be as important as managing external relations. Especially since the basis for getting quality outside is first getting it inside the company. All entities cooperating within the company or organization must work in concert and effectively in order to ensure an appropriate level of services.
External employer branding are activities addressed to future employees and supporting the recruitment process. They mainly consist in creating the company's image as an attractive employer. One where work is not only earnings, but also, for example, prestige. They can consist in active promotion of the company at universities, organizing attractive internships and apprenticeships for students and graduates of other schools.
Participating in the life of social media or even organizing socially positive events. It is also participation in job fairs and promotion of the company's mission. Showing the advantages of the profession, such as additional social benefits, the possibility of early retirement or flexible working hours and the possibility of remote work from anywhere. It is also important how employees are sought – what advertisements or advertisements encouraging them to work in a given company look like.
Outside, the company builds its reputation primarily with the good quality of the products and services it offers.
EB external and internal
Employer branding theoreticians and practitioners often divide activities in this area into those directed inside and outside the company, i.e. internal and external employer branding. The former is addressed to employees already employed, the latter to candidates. Campaigns aimed at external stakeholders have two functions - image and recruitment. The first is to show the package of benefits of working in a given company, the second is to reach the most valuable candidates. The recipients of these messages may be former employees or candidates, but also people who have not had any contact with the company so far. Indirect recipients are, in turn, family members, friends and acquaintances of employees. Either way, they all form a group of stakeholders, and the point is that they perceive the company as a good, attractive employer. To create positive associations with the company as a place of work in their minds.
Employer branding - the origin of the concept
The concept of employer branding is relatively young. It appeared in the 1990s. It was first used at a conference organized by the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development.
It is assumed that employer branding was formulated as a concept by two people. Simon Barrow and Tim Ambler, the creators of the idea of shaping the employer brand, used this phrase in the title of the article The Employer Brand in 1996. Barrow is also the author of the book The employer brand: Bringing the best of brand management to people at workwhich was released in 2005. These authors recognized that the employee is an "internal client" and should be treated as such. Because it is much easier to retain an employee than to recruit one. In their opinion, the "employer brand" is a set of various benefits - functional, economic and psychological - associated with a given company, from being employed in it.
Of course, this does not mean that it was only from the late 1990s that people began to wonder whether – and how – it is worth building an employer brand. Even if the phenomenon was previously unnamed, it does not mean that it did not exist. At some point, the company's activities aimed at shaping a positive image of the employer among current and future employees were noticed by the world of science. Since then, EB has been given a conceptual framework, there have been further attempts to define this trend and include it in the theory of management or marketing. However, the concept of employer branding is still present only recently in the sciences of management, human resource management and marketing.
The essence of employer branding
This term has not been - and will probably never - be translated into a good Polish translation. It has been used in the form of the abbreviation EB or in full English for at least a dozen years. So let's skip the Polish translation of this concept and focus on the essence of things. The essence of employer branding is the assumption that each organization / company / enterprise is a product that must be "sold" to employees, candidates for employees and clients. So employer branding is about consciously building the image of the company as a good workplace. In the era of difficulties with obtaining valuable and - above all, permanent! - the employee's care for his "well-being" becomes a key issue.
Employer branding - a few definitions
Employer branding in recent years has aroused more and more interest among theoreticians of management and marketing sciences, as well as practitioners. However, it is difficult to find a precise definition. As usual, in the case of concepts of this type, one can find many different attempts to describe employer branding. Among theoreticians, we observe various concepts of building the so-called image of the employer.
In various terminology dictionaries, EB is most often defined as image building employers - creating the company's image as an attractive employer.
Manchester researchers Shirley Jenner and Stepehen Taylor said, that employer branding can be defined as "an organization's efforts to communicate to internal and external audiences what makes it both a desirable and distinguished employer."
According to American scientists, Kristin Backhaus and Surinder Tikoo, employer branding is the process of building a unique employer identity. It emphasizes the unique aspects of work in the company, thus allowing you to distinguish the employer from others. It is based on encouraging, motivating and retaining the current and attracting potential employees. When building their definition, they used the theory of the psychological contract. The process of creating an employer identity consists of 3 stages:
- creating an employer brand (this is an "employer value proposition" that is to show what the organization can offer employees);
- presenting this brand on the labor market to attract the desired and the best candidates (external marketing);
developing own human resources - taking care of the current human resources (improving internal marketing).
In turn, management professor Graeme Martin of Edinburgh Business School and the University of Dundee stated that "the quintessence of EB is attracting talented people to the organization and ensuring that both current and potential employees identify with the company (its brand, mission) and provide the results it wants. "
The simplest definition - employer branding
Brilliant in its simplicity is the definition of Andrew Mayo of London Business School. According to him employer branding can be described as "whatever is communicated (consciously or not) to any current or future employee".
To sum up – despite the differences in definitions, there are several common elements that are clearly visible when we read about employer branding. It's about the existence of target groups for EB activities - current and potential future employees. In other words, internal and external audiences. Also, the objectives of employer branding mentioned in various definitions can be reduced to creating the image of an attractive employer, attracting the right candidates to the company and shaping the organizational identity and identifying employees with the company.
Employer branding - related concepts
When analyzing the origin of the term EB, attention should be paid to its connections with several other key concepts: employer brand reputation, employer image, organization attractiveness for candidates, employee identification with the company, employer brand loyalty, employee productivity. The idea is to build a coherent whole from these elements - to create the employer's image as a source of brand reputation, so that it influences the attractiveness of the organization for candidates and identification with the brand of employees.
This is the answer to the question: how to deserve a positive perception of the brand by employees?
Employer's brand or brand
It defines the identity of the company as an employer. This is the image of the organization in the eyes of current and potential employees. It is a set of recognized values, company policies and behaviors that are to attract and retain current and potential employees in the company. The brand consists of both the so-called "hard" elements, ie the level of remuneration, and "soft" elements, such as the organizational culture. That is why we are talking about the symbolic attributes of the employer's brand, i.e. subjective, abstract, intangible and hardly measurable features of the company. These are, in a way, the ideas and emotions associated with the brand of a given employer. A promise of reliability and faithfulness to the declared values. A credible brand means a valuable product - in this case we are talking about an employer worth working for, to whom it is worth sending your CV.
Under the concept of brand building (employer branding) we understand the process of branding a product or service. In the case of EB, it will of course be employer branding. It is about shaping the intended brand identity.
What is identity then? It is a set of unique features that uniquely identify the company and distinguish it from other enterprises with a similar profile, especially from direct competitors. Identity gives you a competitive advantage. Having it makes the company stand out on the market, it is not anonymous, and its employees can identify with it. Thus, it is a set of basic attributes that distinguish a given company from others, its organizational culture, management style, mission, and professed values.
Employer branding the image of the employer
While identity is a set of attributes that the company shows to the environment, the image of the employer (employer image) is, in a way, a subjective image of her. It is an image and a consequence of identity. Every company and organization has a certain image in the environment in which it operates. It is also worth remembering that the lack of an image is also an image! It is difficult to control, because it is largely based on the attitude or personal experience with a given company, on the professed system of values, emotions and subjective attitude. It is a set of beliefs created in the minds of current and potential employees, as well as other people.
In the context of EB, we are also talking about employer value. This value is created based on two types of parameters. The first group consists of subjective and abstract features, i.e. reputation, innovation and prestige of the organization. The second is objective and physical features, i.e. salary, benefits, promotion path. On this basis, the so-called employer's value proposition (EVB) is created, presenting candidates and employees with the offer and favorable employment conditions. To be credible, it must match the identity of the company. Based on its organizational culture, goals, vision and respect for candidates.
Conscious creation of your image and caring for relationships will allow the employer to stand out on the labor market. Thanks to this, he will be called an "employer of choice", and this will allow him to gain valuable employees.
Employer branding - the goal of activities
The aim of all employer branding activities is to prevent the current employees of the company from changing their place of employment and to encourage others to work for us. The departure of employees of a given company and the fluctuation of staff is a problem in virtually all industries. The labor market is currently on the employee's side and gives people the opportunity to choose and change employers in a short time. You don't have to worry about long periods of unemployment. Also, the wages for the same scope of work performed are similar. So how can we make our employees perceive our company as more attractive? What are they guided by when choosing an employer?
An important goal of employer branding is also limitation employee recruitment costs and training. Each new employee must be implemented and trained. Depending on the industry, the emphasis will be on health and safety, compliance with internal regulations and rules, compliance with regulations and standards, knowledge of basic tools or computer programs and applications. It all requires additional investment. For example, learning how to use technologically advanced or computer-controlled equipment can take up to several weeks. Such equipment is generally very expensive and you cannot afford to improvise. It may turn out that an employee newly trained on such equipment wants to quit work after a few months. This is an obvious loss for the trader.
Therefore, starting from recruitment, through the implementation of the employee, it is necessary to ensure that the employee perceives our company as an attractive employer. You should act in such a way that the already employed people feel that they are in the right place when it comes to work, and that potential candidates try to find employment with us. Already during the recruitment process, it is worth paying attention to what is the candidate's motivation? Investing in it will bring us benefits. The optimal situation is to run the company so that employees want to work with us and compete for a place with us. Properly implemented employer branding can do this.
Benefits for the employer
Employer branding means obvious benefits for the employer. Research from LinkedIn shows that organizations with the reputation of a good employer can count on a 28% lower staff turnover, and thus - a reduction of approximately 50% employment costs. In addition, other studies show that as many as 86% candidates declare that they will not apply for a job in a company that has a bad reputation among former employees.
Effective employer branding allows you to attract the best candidates for work in our company. In addition, various studies show that the vast majority of employees would consider moving to a company with a better reputation than their current employer. Therefore, if you want to keep a valuable employee, it is worth taking an interest in and ensuring a good assessment of the company in his eyes. This will certainly reduce the outflow and rotation of employees, and thus save on training and recruitment of their successors. A satisfied employee who perceives the company as a good employer will be loyal to it and, if necessary, more flexible in his approach to work. For example, during periods of increased orders, he will be ready to make more effort and will not leave his employer for any reason.
Employer branding activities also mean improving communication within the team and better communication in the group. Mutual understanding is very important in any institution. Thanks to this, we avoid errors in the implementation of tasks, we do not waste material resources and we do not expose the company to customer dissatisfaction. Employment stability is one of the pillars that allow you to plan and implement new projects.
Employer branding - strategy
When planning a coherent employer branding strategy, many important factors should be taken into account. They include, among others:
- the stage of development in which the company is currently located;
- human resources that the company has at its disposal today;
- human resources that it should have in the future to ensure stable development and normal turnover of staff (for example, retirement, maternity and other leaves);
- company location (large or small town, accessibility, population);
- company environment (other plants and companies, schools, universities);
- directions of the company's development (local departments and branches, outsourcing).
The employer brand strategy must be adapted to the real needs of the company. It should be remembered that some actions will bring results only in the future. Therefore, it is worth recruiting and taking care of employees on an ongoing basis.
What is the phenomenon of a good employer? What makes employees try to work effectively, and sometimes they agree to stay overtime to finish their work? Why are they not looking for a new job with competitors, although sometimes they could count on a higher salary and more direct benefits, such as swimming pool tickets or free meals?
Internal relationships - they are the key to building employee loyalty. They make the company an employer of choice; or the employer of first choice. How to build them? This is a complicated matter. Undoubtedly, to become such an employer, a company should follow clear rules, trust employees and meet their needs.
However, how can this be achieved? How to make current and future staff believe you are given
the company is the desired workplace? There are several key factors.
- Credibility, because it builds trust and loyalty in the company.
- Uniqueness, because the company should stand out from the competition.
- Attractiveness, because the company should seem promising to the candidate.
Why is the employer's brand important?
Employer branding is also of great importance for the company's brand. Speaking of what it is company brand, most often we associate it with the main product or logo. Brand image it is built primarily to arouse interest and trust in the client. But the consumer brand is also dependent on how the company is perceived as an employer. For example, most people, especially in Western societies, are interested in where the products they buy come from and whether they are manufactured in violation of labor rights. Who would like to buy a product or service from a company that has a bad association? The same is true of the employer brand. Candidates will choose companies that have a good reputation and are trusted.
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When creating an employer brand, you should always emphasize what distinguishes our company and clearly communicate our vision and preferred values. A credible brand is one whose message is consistent and consistent. It is not enough to just recruit an employee. If it is valuable, you should keep it, take care of its motivation and commitment. A satisfied employee will be the best showcase of our company.
Strong employer brand is to give us a market advantage and reduce the risk of employee turnover. The image of a company that is just starting its operations should be slightly different than that of a company with many years of tradition. In the first case, the task will be more difficult, you should strive to gain the trust of the environment in all possible fields of activity.
Employees today can choose from a large number of job offers. So what can interest them and keep them in our company? One of the elements indicated by the employees is the possibility of raising qualifications and broadening knowledge. People interested in self-development are also well perceived by employers. Especially nowadays specialists and experts are highly valued. Such niche knowledge significantly increases the value of the candidates. It is worth taking this into account when planning employer branding activities in our company.
Job advertisement in employer branding strategy
First of all, job offers must reach people who are potentially interested. Therefore, the appropriate form and channels of communication should be selected. These can be, for example, portals or the company's website. Depending on who we address our offer to, they can also be industry magazines or social groups or local media. A very good solution is to encourage current employees to recommend our company to their friends. Such a direct recommendation can be an overwhelming argument in choosing an employer.
I will give a job!
The job advertisement must contain basic information such as: job description, required qualifications and possible earnings. From the point of view of employer branding, it is also important to highlight the benefits for the employee resulting from choosing this company and not another. The job offer should also be visually attractive, attract attention and be legible. Other elements important from the point of view of the employee are the form of employment, working hours, etc.
Traditional ways of presenting job offers, such as advertising, banners or even information on vehicles, should arouse interest. They should emphasize the benefits for the employee, for example: from being a crew member of an elite group or an employee of a respected law firm or a wealthy company.
Social media is certainly a great medium, but it does come with some risks. One inappropriate entry or negative comment can sometimes destroy our efforts. A good employer brand strategy should also take into account such situations and allow for a quick reaction, for example with an appropriate correction or substantive explanation.
This is another element on which you can build an advantage. From the employee's point of view, acquiring new qualifications or entitlements at the employer's expense and during working hours is a big benefit and a real benefit. For example, a company wanting to hire drivers may offer to pay for courses for specific driving license categories and additionally offer its own instructor. In this case, such additional perks should be highlighted in the job advertisement. This also applies to other development opportunities.
Employer branding - scope of activities
Examples of employer branding are a whole range of activities that will make us associate the employee with the company. These can be, for example: a clear and clear career and development path for employees. Good internal communication, cooperation with employees in solving problems and - especially - support in difficult personal situations will make people treat the employer as someone they can rely on.
In addition, the important advantages of the company are: a chance for additional earnings, support and adaptation periods for newly recruited employees, caring for good relations in the team, an implemented and clear anti-mobbing system. Taking care of observing employee rights, especially the right to rest, should be a standard.
We can also offer employees, if possible, various types of benefits. These may include, for example: a bonus system, additional incentive benefits, jubilee bonuses, additional insurance, access to private medical care or an extensive system of social benefits. In the absence of such opportunities, it is worth suggesting, for example: supporting interest groups, for example anglers, supporting a local sports club, cooperation with the local community. Corporate integration events, company trips, trainings, workshops, organization of rallies for employees, competitions and small gifts will also always work.
There can be many more ideas for employer branding activities, in this case we can rely on intuition or use the help of specialists. The employer branding agency is a team of experts who will surely suggest the best solutions for employer branding campaigns.
Employer branding the image of the employer - tools
The main measure of employer branding is the care for motivating employees. This is a task primarily for the management staff. You need to remind her of this and tell her how to do it. Contrary to appearances, everyone can be positively motivated. It just takes a moment to understand what is important to the person. It's not always just about money. Sometimes it is enough to notice that the employee deserves praise and to show that we see his commitment and professionalism. Another person may care, for example, about the name of the job title. Or she would like creativity and independence to be included in the description of her duties and requirements.
Sometimes small things matter a lot, but to understand an employee, you need to have good contact with them. For example: most employees commute to work, they would like to be able to park their cars conveniently, or they need bicycle racks. The latter does not seem to be a big challenge, and bike commuters will certainly appreciate it. The same applies to social rooms and other, seemingly not very important, issues.
Another means of employer branding is creating a good and friendly one work atmosphere. A lot depends on the relations prevailing in the workplace, especially in direct relations between people in similar positions. If they are too formal and tense, communication can fail. While in this case the information and commands will still arrive, it is usually out of context. The employee will not understand why, for example, something that has worked so far is changing. In this case, he may be reluctant to make changes. In overly formalized institutions, bottom-up feedback no longer reaches, and senior bosses may not be fully aware of what is happening to their staff.
Organizational culture and employer branding
Employer branding is closely related to the company's organizational culture. The organizational culture of a company consists of various unwritten rules and phenomena that affect the way of thinking and acting in a given company. They distinguish it from others, for example by using a specific language, used mental abbreviations, used emblems or unusual solutions. The organizational culture of the company is something that newcomers have to get used to and learn. It directly affects how employees function. It can be supportive, but it can also be competitive and dominating. It is the people inside the company who create these relationships. They can adapt, but they can also change them to be positive and so that the employee feels satisfied.
Where the working atmosphere and organizational culture are friendly, people willingly go to work. Not only for money, but also to meet cool people, exchange a cake recipe or just joke around. If we take into account how much time we devote to work, it turns out that we have a second family there ...
According to research carried out by LinkedIn, candidates, when checking a job offer, trust the opinions of employees already employed in a given company 3 times more than what the employer says or what is in the advertisement. Thus, the opinion of currently employed employees has a measurable value and may translate into recruitment costs. Of course, if the feedback is not too flattering, it will be more difficult to attract new employees and vice versa. And this can directly translate into the company's development opportunities or just an increase in outlays on recruiting and retaining employees. Appropriate employer branding strategy and activities can remedy this.
Employer branding - how to manage the employer's brand?
A satisfied employee will support his company and defend its good name. However, people do not always clearly and directly communicate what they do not like. There are situations that the media inform about their own or general problems in the company. Most often, in such cases, we are dealing with entries on internet forums or even transferring the topic to local traditional media. These can be entries or even photos that are unfavorable to the employer.
Each company should be prepared for such an eventuality and control the situation as much as possible. That's why you need to take care of the good regardless of the situation corporate image every day. It is important to communicate with the environment using the same channels that are used by potential recipients. For this, however, you need regular activity and knowledge of what type of media our target group usually uses.
How do I remove a negative review?
The advent of the Internet has made access to information virtually unlimited. But is all the content posted there true and reliable? Each user can post what he likes. Sometimes such entries can be harmful and have nothing to do with reality. So how do you fight against unfair opinions? The best and most effective tactic is consistent building of appropriate employer branding and well-thought-out public relations activities. Interesting, professional and effective methods how to remove nnegative opinion proposed by the Commplace agency. On his corporate blog, he suggests how to react and what actions to take in such cases.
Employer branding and employee performance
I guess every manager wonders how to increase employee productivity?
How to motivate them and maintain employee engagement at a high level? The point is not to force the employee to do something, but to want the employee to work better and more efficiently. It is obvious that if an employee likes his job and feels good in the team, he will be more willing to do it.
A well-coordinated team and a good atmosphere also mean that the employees themselves initiate some improvements and changes. They are not afraid to communicate their ideas and can count on the support of their colleagues and superiors. Also, small matters, such as replacements or help in catching up with arrears, well-coordinated employees deal with each other.
A positive attitude to work makes it easier and faster. Also, the possibility of developing and acquiring new skills motivates people to greater involvement. Highlighting the successes of both the team and individually and appreciating even small achievements will make people want to develop and gain new competences. That is why it is important to use employer branding techniques and emphasize the positive aspects of working in our company.
The tasks of employer branding include recruitment support. Crowdstaffing is one of the forms of employee acquisition. It consists in recruiting people from outside the environment of a known employer. The recruitment process is entrusted to external recruiters who, through their own contacts and through the recommendation system, reach people with the sought-after professional profile. Crowdstaffing also referred to as community recruiting. The whole process is usually done remotely, using platforms, and the recruiter charges a commission for finding a candidate. Remember that the company's reputation can be a decisive argument when acquiring an expert.
Communication in the company and employer branding
Efficient communication in the company is of great importance. Both experience and company audits confirm that organizations that care about proper communication achieve higher profits. It is both about communication between the supervisor - the employee and the employee - employee. Of course, communication has to be two-way and preferably confirmed by some kind of feedback. Good communication allows you to avoid mistakes at work, as well as in contacts and meeting customer expectations.
For the information to be true, you need to develop mutual trust and fair relationships. That is why it is so important to take care of how employees feel in the company. The employee should not be afraid of contacts with the supervisor. He should be able to clearly communicate what can possibly be improved or talk about other matters important to him and the company, without fear of negative consequences.
The situation in the team can also affect the quality and flow of information. For example, some conflict situation may disrupt it. Improving communication in the company it is a continuous process and we should try to keep it in mind. A clear message and honest information about successes and mistakes will help to develop processes in the company in a positive direction.
Internal employer branding consists, among other things, in maintaining the most numerous channels of communication with employees and their environment. Communication is not only a face to face conversation. It is also e-mails, text messages, company website, newsletter or even a notice board.
The usefulness of EB
Employer branding it is very useful especially in those industries and companies where high qualifications are needed. Professionals with extensive professional experience can now choose from among job offers. Assuming that the level of remuneration will be similar, the employee will choose the employer that enjoys a better opinion on the labor market. What's more, the company's reputation may mean that specialists will apply for work with us.
Employer branding and employee development
One of the most frequently cited reasons why employees decide to change jobs is the lack of development opportunities. Of course, usually a group of employees is satisfied with the daily routine and the fact that their work is repetitive and does not require creativity. However, most employees declare that they would like to develop professionally and in the future be promoted to at least the group of specialists or higher. In order to keep such people in the company for longer, you need to give them a perspective for development. It is always worth remembering that an investment in an employee is also an investment in the company.
Employee development methods and employer branding
Employee development methods may vary greatly, depending on the capabilities and needs of the company. The easiest way is to conduct training within the organization. They can be combined with the organization of company trips and elements of team building. Depending on the needs and size of the company, improvement can be carried out through online meetings. E-learning also offers a flexible approach to self-development.
In the employer branding strategy, you can also plan support for outstanding employees in the form of funding for studies or postgraduate education. Or the possibility of an apprenticeship or internship in other positions, creating a staff reserve at the same time.
Internal training They are also a great way to bring out your team's potential and get to know your crew better. Their greatest advantage is that they are practical and have a direct impact on improving the quality of work.
Employee experience determines what experiences an employee has in relation to a given company. Starting from how he found out about its existence, through recruitment, work and parting with the company. It is the sum of his experiences, feelings and associations. It is also his subjective opinion about the rules prevailing in the company, about management, internal communication and development opportunities.
According to the classics of management theory, employees' experiences translate into their attitude towards the company's customers. Richard Branson argued that if we take care of our employees, they will also properly care for our customers.
Employee experience management
Professional employee experience management it consists in systematic and consistent activities aimed at improving the level of employee satisfaction. However, it is not about some activity, but a well-thought-out strategy, consistently implemented. You can start with audits or employee surveys and work in areas that need improvement, depending on the results. Particular attention should be paid to the organizational culture and the basic workshop of the employed people. Let's try to adapt them to the needs of the employee, and not the other way around. A satisfied employee will certainly be more effective.
What is candidate experience?
The term is used more and more frequently in discussions about EB candidate experience, it simply means the candidate's experience during each contact with a potential employer. This concept is important from the point of view of employer branding, because it describes how our company will be associated by candidates applying for a job in it. By researching candidate experience, a company can find out how people potentially interested in work perceive the company.
Of course, the more positive opinions, the better the position and company image will be stronger and it will be easier to recruit. It's about all these experiences - from the first click on the employer's website or portal with offers, through communication - by e-mail, telephone or finally direct. Creating a positive image during the recruitment process is – it is a truism – very important. Therefore, the recruitment process must be properly prepared. The key issue is communication with the candidate and feedback. People responsible for recruitment, employees with whom the candidate will come into contact, and finally the management have a large impact on the image of the company that a potential employee will create.
Recruitment and the company's reputation
HR specialists (86%) have been alarming for several years that recruitment is becoming more and more like marketing. Consequently, companies must ensure the best possible reputation as an employer. Research shows that as many as 84% jobseekers take into account the company's reputation as an employer.
The first direct contact between the employer and the potential employee takes place already at the recruitment stage. The interview is important to both parties. The employer decides whether the candidate has the appropriate qualifications, while the recruited person is already building his first opinion on the atmosphere and relations prevailing at the potential employer.
Employer Value Proposition (EVP) - how is the employer selected?
Employer Value Proposition (EVP) is a set of features, values and associations assigned to a specific employer. It is a unique value for which people want to work in this company, and not in others, similar. The isolation of these features is the basis for building an employer branding strategy. Of course, these are the features that not only distinguish a given company or organization, but also those that are most desired by the people we want to reach. Our employees, job applicants, specialists and experts must find out that they can find this "something" with us.
The question of why you are in our team or why you want to work with us is worth asking and drawing conclusions. If employees feel good in our company, then this message will probably also be passed on, and these are real benefits for the company.
Exhibiting such positive features will certainly greatly strengthen the image of both the already employed and external clients. The entire message must be coherent and harmonize with the overall development strategy of the company, its goals and mission.
Employer branding database
Employer branding must be based on a real message. Employees and candidates often verify opinions about the employer on their own. It's no problem to log in to a forum or just talk to someone who already works for the employer that interests us. So what are the pillars of EB?
- the uniqueness of the offer - these are the features of EVP that need to be exposed. It should be emphasized what makes us stand out and what we can offer to our target group,
- visual attractiveness of the offer,
- properly selected channels for reaching the offer,
- stability of employment - this is one of the key features to evaluate the employer.
The ideal employer - employer branding in practice
Employer branding in practice can and should result from the company's overall operating strategy. It can be carried out by an entire team of employees, for example in HP, PR and marketing departments. In smaller companies, it can be carried out simply as part of daily work and rely on the use of a few simple techniques.
First of all - appropriate adaptation of the content of the message to the perceptive abilities and age of the recipient. We will have a different dialogue with a mature person with a well-developed work ethos, and differently with a person who wants to start work for the first time and knows what he really wants to do for the first time. Such people probably have different systems of values and expectations. Therefore, the message and the manner of motivation should be carried out individually as much as possible.
Secondly, we should use the communication channels employees use on a daily basis. For example, if we have a working group on messenger and we know that everyone is using it, then we can also post information from us there. If, on the other hand, our target group is not interested in this form, then let's just analyze the current method of communication and use it. Let's try to be in constant contact with people we care about so as to identify their needs and expectations as well as professional goals on an ongoing basis.
Thirdly - let's use all available media and always treat them also as recruitment tools. By informing about new products or events important for the local community, we can also create our own positive image. Also, acting on a microscale and achieving small goals, you can effectively create a brand of a good employer.
Employer branding - the image of the employer in a nutshell
- specify the group you want to reach
- display what distinguishes your company on the labor market
- define communication channels.
Employer branding - how to build and complement an efficient team?
Employer branding is not only recruitment marketing, it is an effective tool for building an efficient and solid team. How to make the specialists we desire want to work in our team? The key seems to be to evoke such emotions that will reassure them that they are in the right place for them. Let us remember, however, that such a friendly environment should be taken care of and from time to time create events or small situations that maintain a good atmosphere. The point is that the sum of experiences and associations with the employer should be constantly growing.
This can be done, for example, by organizing various types of company events, training or integration meetings. Also small surprises or celebrating unusual occasions. The employee should be taken care of at every stage of employment. Also in the event of a transfer or termination of professional work, let's make sure that he remembers us from the best side. A satisfied employee, also a former employee, will be the showcase of our company. Each employee brings something with their work, let's take care of their loyalty and satisfaction, even if they are not a leader or are with us only for a short time.
Employer branding and recruitment / recruitment in schools and universities
Already at the stage of planning the employer branding strategy, let's take into account activities in schools and universities. Recruiting new employees and encouraging potential candidates to work in our company is a real challenge today. However, it is possible that candidates may be interested in our offer. For this to happen, we must reach them in advance with our proposal and interest them. It is best to start the recruitment process in schools and universities.
This can be done by participating in job fairs, offering interesting internships or internships. Or, for example, by organizing the so-called open doors in our company, product presentation or brand promotion by supporting school initiatives. Generally, universities are interested in cooperation. Scholar career offices also offer collaborative opportunities. It is worth reaching out to them and proposing fields of study or profiles with the prospect of working for graduates.
Recruitment - classic methods
The attractiveness of our job offer depends on whether it is tailored to the needs, values and personality of potential job candidates. There are several places where we can properly present our company and job offers:
- industry conferences allow you to present the company as an employer in a fairly comprehensive way. In addition, they provide the opportunity to talk directly to potential candidates.
- participation in job fairs / career days at universities - it is worth establishing cooperation with research clubs and student organizations, as well as with the career office of a given university. During the job fair, we will already have our brand "ambassadors", which will facilitate contacts with potential employees.
- internships and internships - you can also offer internships or internships to students or graduates, thanks to which they will have the opportunity to get to know our company well. If both parties are satisfied with the internship, there will be a chance to hire a valuable employee.
Tools for building an e-image
Employer branding also needs to be built in the digital world. Among the tools used by employers to create an e-image, we can find, for example:
- company websites. Especially the "Career" or "Work" tab is the simplest, banal and obligatory way of communicating with the staff - current or potential. The basic tool for people looking for information about the employer. Of course, we should post job offers in this tab, as well as a detailed description of the rules of the recruitment process, but that's not all. If we have a special application form, it must be placed there. It is also worth using the website to present to the candidates the company's mission, its values and vision of development. The candidate then has the opportunity to assess his or her adjustment to the assumptions of the company's organizational culture.
- banner advertising on the Internet.
- corporate blogs. Thanks to them, you can inform about the company's life, which helps to create the company's image as a good employer, but also to promote knowledge in a given field. It is worth taking advantage of their recruitment and information potential.
- employers' profiles on social media. These are specialized profiles for professionals, such as GoldenLine or LinkedIn, as well as those intended primarily for establishing contacts and relationships, such as Facebook, Twitter, Instagram.
- videos or podcasts. Posted on YouTube channel or Spotify platform; may be typically recruiting, but not necessarily.
E-image of the employer
Currently, a large part of employer branding activities takes place in the digital space. You can clearly see the increased presence of employers in social media. The importance of career and recruitment websites is also growing. Digital natives, i.e. potential candidates for a job, actually cannot imagine any other way of looking for it than on the Internet. That is why every company that wants to "keep up" with its potential employees must prepare for intensive activities on the Internet.
- promotion of the company in various specialized industry websites.
- posting up-to-date information on job vacancies on the Internet, even in online recruitment portals, tailored to the target group, in an accessible form. It is important that they contain all the necessary information necessary for the candidates to make the decision to apply. They should contain elements that will emphasize the attractiveness of employment in a given company.
- participation in virtual job fairs - it is an opportunity to establish contact with potential employees. The presence of representatives of the HR department and managers of the team for which the recruitment projects are carried out is important.
- presence in the media - it is about media campaigns, expert articles or simply media appearances or interviews published in the press and on industry portals.
Employer branding - the image of the employer in social media
Employer branding in social media is a great way to reach those most interested in a given type of job. There are many groups on internet forums where people exchange information about work in a given industry or region. Activity on forums and portals guarantees reaching the most interested.
The company's website should also contain information that we want to hire a new employee. Of course, an interesting and clear website is also a showcase of the company. It is worth taking care of it and clearly extracting information about recruitment.
Innovative methods image creation employers
The growing competition and the difficult situation on the labor market require conscious creation of one's own brand. The company is to arouse interest - but also, and maybe even above all - trust! This is not an easy task, because the generation of "digital natives" is quite wary of any attempts at too intrusive marketing.
The tools used so far in the field of EB are not always sufficient (own websites, company blogs, internet search engines, dynamic marketing, social media, online job portals).
Of course use social media and popular applications or blogs, even Twitter or Facebook, LinkedIn or GoldenLine is crucial, but usually it is not enough. Especially in contacts with the youngest generation of job candidates or employees. New methods of creating the image of one's company as an employer are still being sought.
For example such as:
- gamification – information pages of some companies are supplemented with elements of gamification/gamification. It's about using game elements and game design techniques in employer branding to motivate employees/candidates to act and solve problems. Gamification always has a specific goal, it's about making certain processes more attractive. For example, the recruitment procedure - it is known that it is a stressful process, sometimes long-lasting, and thanks to gamification it can be turned into "fun". However, what is important, this quasi-fun allows recruiters to get to know the personality and reactions of the candidate in various situations.
- storytelling in other words, narrative marketing, i.e. storytelling. It is a natural way of exchanging experiences. Thanks to this method, we can tell candidates and employees about the company so as to convince them of the reality of what we offer. Storytelling engages audiences much more than dry facts. Storytelling is a persuasive technique that uses stories to evoke emotions. Storytelling takes building brand identity as an employer to another level.
Digital natives perfectly functioning in the virtual world appreciate modern tools that trigger their creativity and give them the opportunity to develop. So let's use these methods.
Is employer branding measurable?
Everything related to rigid HR data is measurable. For example, the number of new job applications, the number of people who left the company. Media activity can also be measured, for example, by the number of articles, speeches or citations, or the number of job advertisements. The number of views, likes or invitations is also visible on social media.
How to measure return on investment in employer branding? For example, you can compare the recruitment costs before and after the application of employer baranding techniques. It is also possible to calculate what real value gives us the stability of employment.
A good example is the image and market costs incurred by airlines that laid off workers during the pandemic. Experienced employees have already found another job and do not want to return to an unstable employer. New applicants have high salary expectations and it takes time to prepare and train them.
As we read in the report Employer branding in Poland prepared by the HRM Institute a few years ago, only 9% out of 349 surveyed companies had a separate EB department. In other companies, activities aimed at candidates and current employees were carried out either by HR departments - in 47% cases, or marketing departments - in 11% cases. However, this is not an ideal situation, because in order to deal with EB effectively, you must have knowledge of both human resources and marketing.
Employees of HR or marketing departments are not always familiar with the latter. As a result, the strategies they prepare are often incomplete. They do not take into account the methods used by employer branding. All this means that as many as 52% companies still do not have a specific employer branding strategy. Although in the vast majority of cases (83%), company authorities realize that appropriate EB activities would make it easier to attract potential candidates to the company. Especially that the most valuable for the company are employees with several years of experience, and such employees are rarely looking for a job - because they already have one.
One of the largest employment agencies in Poland, Manpower Group has prepared a report entitled 2018 Talent Shortage Survey. It shows that as many as 51% Polish employers have problems with finding employees with the necessary skills. The greatest shortage is in skilled manual workers, drivers, industrial manufacturing workers, engineers, as well as restaurant and hotel workers.
Moreover, the Aon Best Employers report shows that as many as 52% employees in Poland did not feel involved in the work they performed and did not identify with the company (in Europe - 38%).
All these data show that there is still a lot to be done in the field of employer branding. And that caring for the appropriate image of the employer should be a duty, not a choice. It's not just about using the simplest EB strategies. It is about selling emotions - building a narrative in such a way that the candidate / employee believes that by becoming - or being - part of a given company, they represent what is important, good and responsible.
Framework of employer branding values
In employer branding, we strive to create a positive image of the company. It must be consistent and coherent at each level (employee-employee relations; employee-employer; employee-customer). Only in this way will it be possible not only to attract but also retain ambitious, committed and motivated employees in the company. However, it is not easy to be called an 'employer of choice'. What actions are worth taking?
- ensure the satisfaction of employees - it is certainly number one! A satisfied employee is an efficient employee. Loyal. Confidential. Reliable. Recommending your friends to your company. Ambassador of the company he works for.
- present a responsible approach to employees
- present a clear and measurable process for assessing the effects of work
- present a coherent vision of attracting candidates and retaining already hired employees
- take care of the company's organizational culture
- monitor the internal and external transparency of the company
- choose the appropriate management style.
Long-term strategy - employer branding
It is important to remember that the employer brand strategy is a long-term strategy. Building the image of an employer as the one who provides excellent conditions to its employees is not a task for days, weeks or even months. In the period of great turmoil on the labor market, it is not easy to find employment stability. Thus, the ability to attract the right candidates for particular positions is worth the effort. Attracting the best applicants and retaining already employed specialists in the company certainly pays off. What are the benefits?
- we avoid excessive personnel fluctuation (too much and too frequent personnel changes make the company "fall out of rhythm")
- we optimize recruitment costs (the recruitment process can generate considerable costs)
- we optimize training costs for newly hired employees
- we gain a team of highly qualified and motivated employees.
New job = risk?
Researchers, especially psychologists, point out that decisions related to choosing a job are high-risk and high-uncertainty decisions. A job applicant usually doesn't know much about the company - and doesn't really know much about it. Of course, potential employees try to get more information, because a new job sometimes means a complete change of lifestyle (for example in the case of shift work) or a move (sometimes with the family).
Of course, the media is the first, most obvious source of information about a potential employer, and if we have a so-called strong brand, all the better. However, word-of-mouth marketing is invaluable in this case. But for our employees to want to be ambassadors of our company, we have to make an effort. They themselves have to be convinced that the company they work for is a good place before they start convincing others. Only then can we use their opinions in the recruitment process.
Some companies, in order to make it easier for new employees to adapt to an unfamiliar environment, began to prepare so-called manuals. These are textbooks/guides in which they present their organizational culture to newly hired employees. Usually, of course, a nice and friendly atmosphere is emphasized, benefits resulting from employment in this particular organization are mentioned, sometimes there is even a glossary of specific slang for a given company. Thanks to this, the new employee has a chance to adapt faster in the team.
Labor market - challenges and the place of employer branding
Today, the labor market in Europe is very unstable. There is a shortage of specialists in many areas. However, there is also a shortage of hands to work, for example in services, where you do not have to show very specialized skills or high competences. So how do you deal with acquiring and retaining employees?
What is happening on the labor market is the result of many factors. Of course, we have no influence on most of them. For example, political issues always affect the legal regulations of the labor market. In turn, globalization is the main economic factor affecting the number of available employees. Technological progress means that more and more activities are performed for us by machines and robots. Thus, the demand for human labor in its simplest dimension decreases. Demographic changes, especially the aging of European societies, and thus the decreasing number of people of working age also have an impact on the shape of the labor market.
In a situation of shortage of employees, especially those highly specialized or performing "ungrateful" work in services, companies must implement employer branding solutions, otherwise they will not survive. They just don't have enough staff.
To sum up - what is employer branding? It is an employer brand strategy, which includes all activities carried out by the company in order to build the company's image as an attractive employer. It is something like internal marketing. The employer branding campaign consists in creating the company's image with particular emphasis on the importance of the employee. He shows what the company offers him and how he will take care of him. In addition, it creates and shows the positive features and values that are associated with this work. The goal is to attract and retain the highest qualified staff.
Building an employer brand is one of the most important activities that every company should pay attention to today. In the age of the Internet, candidates for various positions are looking for information about potential employers and make sure that many aspects of the job are properly presented to them. That is why it is worth taking care of the image of the employer's brand. Thanks to this, we will increase the involvement of current employees and attract new, highly qualified candidates. A properly built employer brand is the key to success on many levels. Therefore, employer branding should be treated as one of the priority activities.
What is employer branding?
Employer branding is nothing more than building the image of the employer in the eyes of current and potential employees of the company. This means that the company tries to attract the best candidates on the labor market by proactively presenting its business, organizational culture, values and benefits offered to employees. Why is it so important? Because nowadays the competition on the labor market is huge, and attracting and retaining the best employees is the key to success. Employer branding can make it possible to stand out from the crowd and attract those "ideal" candidates who will constitute valuable human capital for the company in the future.
How to prepare a good employer branding strategy?
Preparing an effective employer branding strategy is a process that requires paying attention to many factors. In today's labor market, employees have many choices, and one of the most effective ways to attract talent is to use employer branding strategies. A good employer brand strategy should take into account the values and goals of the organization and understand the needs and expectations of employees. Involvement in creating a strong brand and building a favorable image is the key to success on the competitive labor market. Remember that a well-thought-out employer branding strategy means not only increasing the number of responses to job advertisements, but also improving the level of employee involvement and increasing their loyalty.
What are examples of employer branding activities?
Nowadays, a well-conducted employer branding policy can be crucial for the success of any company. What are some examples of activities that are an important element of this strategy? For example, offering employees a friendly work environment, training and career development programs, as well as material benefits such as medical insurance or free entry to fitness clubs. In addition, organizing company integration events, engaging in social activities and building the brand image on the Internet also contribute to increasing the attractiveness of the employer in the eyes of potential employees. All these activities can have a positive impact on the company's reputation and encourage qualified specialists to work in a given organization.
How to prepare for an employer branding campaign?
Preparing for an employer branding campaign requires not only proper planning, but also a precise strategy. The key element is defining your own brand as an employer and defining its values. Then you need to decide what target groups you want to reach and what communication channels to use. An important stage is also researching the opinions of employees and candidates about the company in order to be able to adjust the content and promotional tools to their needs. It is also worth considering creative elements, such as interesting graphic solutions that will attract the attention of potential candidates. A properly conducted employer branding campaign can attract not only more candidates, but also build a stronger and more attractive employer brand.
How to choose the right employer branding agency?
The right employer branding agency is a key element in the process of building a positive image of the company, especially in times when competition on the labor market is growing. When starting the search for the right one, it is worth following a few key criteria. First of all, the agency should have experience in the industry in which the company operates. In addition, it is worth checking what methods and strategies he uses to attract the right candidates to work in a given company. Transparency in operation is also important, so it is worth paying attention to the information that the agency provides on its website, including references from other clients.