As competition for top talent continues to heat up, here’s a recruitment strategy worth embracing—tapping into your company’s biggest assets, your employees. By now you’ve come to realize that for better (or for worse!), the people who work for your company double as corporate ambassadors. They’re “the living, breathing embodiment of what you stand for as an employer,” writes Adam Glassman, a recruitment strategies manager. What they say about your corporate brand on social media and online job sites matters.
The concept of the “employer brand”—how you communicate your organization’s values, culture, and personality—has come a long way in recent years. Research from Betterteammakes a case for investing in your employer brand, citing that companies with strong, positive brands receive twice as many applications as those with negative brands. They also pay less for talent (companies with bad reputations pay a 10 percent premium per hire).
These days, the majority of job candidates look beyond a company’s website when researching job opportunities; 62 percent research companies on social media, such as looking up current employee profiles on LinkedIn or reading reviews on Glassdoor. In fact, 70 percent of candidates say they trust what employees say about a company more than brand ads.
To attract the right talent, your company needs to effectively tell your employer brand story. And for employer branding to be most effective, it needs to be viewed as a retention strategyand not simply a talent acquisition strategy. Here are some tips to help you take control of your brand narrative:
Embrace storytelling. Use storytelling techniques to optimize your company’s job descriptions, career site, and company page in an effort to attract qualified candidates for which your brand’s values will resonate. “Highlighting company differentiators like culture, benefits, and events on your career site and other inbound channels will attract great potential people who are passionate about finding the right fit,” explains Bryan Chaney, a talent and employer branding specialist. Make sure your employer brand is on display throughout the candidate hiring experience—from start to finish.
Think social and visual. Venture beyond the typical job board listings and consider advertising on podcasts and social media channels like Snapchat. Showcase the culture of your company using vivid visuals and images that accentuate the positive but are also realistic. Posts that are brief, bright, and most importantly— authentic—will gain you brand exposure that leads to talent. Let your employees contribute on your social channels, too. Learn from brands like Oracle that are sharing employee-generated content that tells a true but compelling story of what it’s like to work there.
Boost employee happiness. Employee happiness and employer branding work hand in hand. “The factors that comprise employee happiness (culture, benefits, work/life balance, career opportunities, etc.) all contribute to the health of your employer brand,” according to The 2016 State of Employer Branding, a survey conducted by Jibe, which provides candidate experience and recruitment software. Reflect internally to ensure that your company culture makes it a place where employees want to work.
Prove ROI using analytics. Among the 35 percent of companies in the Jibe survey that could demonstrate an ROI on their employer branding activities, 91 percent invested in analytics. Develop KPIs and set up analytics tracking to measure your employer brand activities—enabling you to boost your budget where it counts most.
Taking these steps to tell your employer brand story effectively is critical as you work to attract top talent and increase employee engagement. Treat your employees as the brand ambassadors they already are, and you’ll begin to see dividends in terms of how your company is perceived.