Want to get the best talent searching for your latest job openings?
In a candidate-driven market, it's important to know what your potential hires are looking for in a new employer. Ultimately, staff today want more than just a great salary to help them decide who they should be working with. Modern employees are on the hunt for a place to work where they can feel comfortable, supported, and nurtured.
This means that if you want to bring the best talent your way, you're going to need a great employer brand. An employer brand is simply your company's reputation, and how people think of you as a potential boss.
While the idea of branding has been around for decades, people are just starting to come to terms with the idea of an employer brand, and how it can help them to get new hires. Here, we're going to look at how you can build an employer brand that will bring you the skills you need.
1. Research your Current Reputation
Before you can start changing the way people think about you through careful hiring processes and new benefits packages, you need to find out what people are already saying about your company. There are plenty of ways that you can research your employer brand. For instance, you can:
- Use internal surveys and questionnaires: Ask your employees how they would describe your company in five words or less and ask them to explain what they like and dislike about your brand. If it helps, make the surveys anonymous, so your employees feel more comfortable.
- Look online: Check out what people have said about you on social media, and forums like Glassdoor. The online world has made it easier for anyone to have a say on what they think about their employer.
- Ask interview candidates: At the end of an interview, ask your would-be employee what they think about your company, and how they perceive your employer brand.
Once you've figured out what your current reputation looks like, you can begin to build a strategy that alters your image to suit what you want candidates to think about you.
2. Define your Strategy
Building a sustainable employer brand means creating a message that tells people what to expect when they apply for a job with your company. This could mean updating the "About Us" section on your website or changing the content you publish to draw more attention to case studies and employee experiences that will help future candidates to visualize a life in your role.
Think about how you can start altering the perceptions that people have of you today, but make sure that whatever you do, you keep the image you present to others consistent. You should be able to offer a cohesive picture of your organization all the way from when a candidate looks you up online, to when they turn up for a job interview.
3. Nurture Company Culture
The term "company culture" seems to be everywhere in the recruitment world these days. However, it's more than just a buzzword - it's also an important strategy in boosting employee productivity and keeping your staff happy.
Since people spend most of their conscious hours in the work environment, it only makes sense that today's employees are looking for somewhere to work where they feel comfortable. A good company culture helps your candidate to feel as though they "fit" with your brand. However, you need to make sure that you're demonstrating that culture if you want it to have an impact on your employer brand. For instance, you can:
- Add information about your company culture to your job descriptions
- Improve company culture by encouraging communication between members of your team
- Ask your employees what they like about your company culture, and what they dislike
Remember, 83% of millennials say that they feel actively engaged at work when they believe the organization they're working for has an inclusive culture.
4. Offer Various Benefits and Incentives
If you want candidates to get excited about your job opportunities, then you need to give them something that they're willing to fight for. This could mean looking beyond salary increases and comfortable working environments, into benefits and incentives. You can tailor your benefits to suit the needs and expectations of your employees. For instance, employees in the construction industry might not be able to take advantage of remote working schedules, but you could always offer them a chance to finish early on a day that suits them.
People in the engineering sector might love an opportunity to improve their skills with training and access better peace of mind with health insurance. If you're worried that you don't have the time to find out which individual benefits each of your employees need, you can always get a little help. A PEO services company can help you to manage the benefits part of your employer brand, so you can focus more of your attention on helping future employees understand what you stand for.
5. Access Brand Advocacy
One of the most important parts in building a successful employer brand is making sure that your reputation spreads. It's great for your existing employers to understand how fantastic your workplace is, and how good you are as an employer, but that doesn't help much when you're trying to attract new candidates to your team.
There are plenty of ways that you can spread awareness for your employer brand, including working with a specialist recruitment agency. However, one of the best things you can do is take advantage of technology, and the happiness of your current staff. If your employees are thrilled to be working for you, ask them to share their opinions online in the form of employee advocacy.
Posts from happy employees on social media and job forums can do wonders for your reputation. At the same time, your employees could even contribute to articles or case-studies that strengthen your position in your niche.
6. Treat Candidates Like Customers
Many companies know that they need to go above and beyond to capture the attention of their target audience and maintain brand loyalty. However, they forget to implement the same level of dedication in keeping their employees happy too.
When people start searching for engineering, logistics, and construction jobs online, they're not just looking for an income; they're shopping for the best possible experience. That means that it's important to look at your candidates like the consumers they are. As well as searching for the right salary and job title, they'll also be looking through your job descriptions like they would a product description, searching for the right words like:
- Leadership experience
- Flexible hours
- State of the art equipment
At the same time, they'll be searching for reviews, just like your customers, and the promise of a good experience when they agree to an interview. Treat your candidates like customers, and you'll not only get better employees, you'll also be able to retain those employees for longer too.
Keep Working on Your Employer Brand
In a job market where candidates have the upper hand, it's important for companies to have the resources they need to "sell" themselves to new employees. An employer brand is just one of the things that you can build to get more responses to your job description, and hopefully a bigger pool of talent to search through.
Combined with support from the right recruitment company, your employer brand can make your business attractive enough to steal the right talent out of the arms of your competitors. Start working on your reputation today.
Bio: Jock Purtle, the man behind DigitalExits.com, is a long-term entrepreneur and business owner. Jock acquired his first company at the age of 19 and likes to share his business lessons with others.