Amongst various trending topics in HR acreage “Employer Branding” tops the list. Employer branding is the progression of promoting a company (organization), as the employer of choice to a preferred target group whom a company needs and wants to recruit and then retain. The process of employer branding enables the company’s capability in attracting, recruiting and retaining employees (Talent) in hiring and helps to achieve company’s business objectives. Employer branding, moves in line with the growth of economy. In the Indian Job Outlook Survey 2012 conducted by TJinsite, research and knowledge arm of TimesJobs.com that recruiters have to push frontiers to construct brand attractiveness to make skilful talents contemplate on their employment opportunities. Employer Brand is the perception that emanates to the mind when someone hears about your company’s name; hence we can say that the business’s success is strongly associated with the perception of the stakeholders and applicants and for an effective employer brand on has to create an identity which has to be truly real, trustworthy, appropriate, distinguishing and aspirational.
Organisations deploy strategy to create an Employer Value Proposition (EVP) that expresses to the desire current and prospective employees as to why the organisation is exceptional, engaging eccentric and great place to work. A successful employment branding shall reduce cost of hiring and brings simplicity the hiring process. By now we have established that an Employer Brand has value as well as positioning, which goes without saying.
Few best practices of Employer Branding are as follows:
Thought Clarity, the organization stands for what: Mission, vision, and values are the core of and organization and speaks loud and bold. This has to be clear and should flow through to the employer branding communications every time (e.g. Apple and Starbucks). Potential talents high in critical thinking and idealism perceive that this gives meaning to what they do. A clearly stated value, vision and mission help the potential candidates to align their own to that of the organization for better engagement. Over and above it should flow top to bottom and leaders should make efforts in communicating the message.
Company Culture: Organizations should build up a very clear company culture, if not done don’t bother starting on employer brand. First priority should be given to sort out the company culture. The company culture and Employer Brand should be reflected in everything; from the way employees behave to the setup of the office and the words used in marketing materials. This is the very fact why it is of prime importance to know company’s culture inside and out.
Communication Optimisation: Communication is the only mode through which we can communicate what we want to the stakeholders and potential talents out in the market. Organization are now using tools of varied range to provide social software solutions to extend support and make effective communication flow outside as well as inside of an organisation. This tool not just facilitates communication but also make look organizations smarter, responsive, and innovative.
Digitalising: With the growing presence of information technology organizations are creating smart digital employer branding strategies for attracting, engaging and retaining talent. Colossal amounts of information are available, from what’s being said about your company online to internal forums focused on improving business processes, not just this but focus on organization’s website is an effective medium to endorse business, not only for customers but also for prospective candidates.
Employee reviews: With the proliferation of employee review websites employer branding has a new space of venture. It gives advantage for effective employer branding reach and strategy. Maintaining company’s image and brand value has becomes prime importance. Now organizations should respond positively to queries and provide prompt feedbacks for reviews regarding the businesses.
Networking: Businesses want to spread their roots not just locally but also globally and hence the organizational requirement of diverse talents with variant cognitive thinking pattern and solution providers arises. The key is to meet this requirement is to organically grow the network on a continuously basis and ensure to have global reach on the network For organization it is inevitable now to learn and connect with range of talent from different backgrounds.
Recruitment: This is one of the ways through which the company is exposed to the outer world and all organizations want to make sure their Employer Brand is represented well in their recruitment process. Right from the job advertisement to the interviews; from all email or telephone communications to the candidate assessments reflects employer brand. Candidate assessment is one of the powerful tools especially if the organizations have psychometric assessments of intelligence, personality and skills all at the same time. The good thing about HR preselection is that they can reflect your Employer Brand and speaks loud of the way company operates. The experience that the candidates undergo leaves behind a very strong impression about the company.
On boarding, Induction and Orientation: When an employee joins in they undergo experience which help them start their new journey and start aligning themselves with that of the organization. As this person is undergoing transition he is connected to old employer and associates as well and the experience he would get will be flowing through various channels into the market through this network. It is very important to handle the excitement and nervousness of the new on boards, as both the conditions are extreme in nature, that to be handled with care. During the time when there is a dearth of available resource, it is then these things become the selling points as an employer. Unique employer qualities come up during the process of constantly measuring performance and adjusting activities and strategies to continuously improve and the way we communicate it to our employees internally, this in turn brings sustainability of the employer brand and also makes it a living, effervescent and striking entity.
Career path: A promising career path is what potential talents crave for. Higher responsibilities & credibility with promotion attracts employees to take on new challenges and provide solutions in their job roles. Talents believe in growing with the company.
CSR: Corporate Social Responsibility has lately been taken very seriously by the organizations, this may not be a strategically thought activity to impact business but certainly the good deeds gets noticed and stake holders hence like to get associated with such brands who understands their position when giving back to the society. For organizations it is important to realize that this could be one of the good employers branding tactics and can impact how people perceive a brand positioning in the market, in comparison to the competition. People now actively participate in making a positive impact on society and want to contribute some sort of value by contributing to the society. Hence, Organizations should ensure that it demands prompt attention to matters that influence environment and society.
In one of the survey by LinkedIn showed that employer brand impacts job consideration decisions, especially, for the younger, more global and junior audiences. Knowledge about the company’s products, services, and employee experiences are some ways by which potential candidates learn about a company. Knowing what the company does is vital for candidates to be able to determine, whether or not a particular organisation fits their bill of requirements or not. Organizations need to be proactive to establish its employer brand in every aspect, be it creating a workplace culture free of biases, offering more than expected remuneration or taking care of all their needs and requirements, helping them grow personally, spiritually and professionally, giving them the autonomy to be on their own and can make choice to work at their peak productive hours. It’s a deliberate and conscious process until it becomes a routine.
Author-Rajesh Tripathi is currently Head & Vice president – Corporate Human Resource at GHCL Limited. He has over 22 years experience as an HR professional. He is member of Advisory board of GL Bajaj Institute of Technology & Management, Great Noida and won many prestigious awards e.g. CHRO of the Year Award-2018, Change & Transformation Award-2017 and many more, HR Excellence Award-2017, 100 Top HR Mind of India-2017.