Creating a strong employer brand – talented and inspired employees will make your business successful
A successful employer brand helps a company attract and hold on to skilled employees. It is widely acknowledged that the fight for talent is more intense than ever, and an organisation’s reputation as an employer plays a huge role in how appealing it appears to current and potential future employees.
Regarding this, it is strange that employer brand management is not emphasized more at many Finnish companies. The most talented individuals can usually choose where they want to work, so organisations must make their own strengths as employers known. They should answer the question asked by many job seekers: What do I gain by working here?
Simon Barrow and Richard Mosley’s business book The Employer Brand – Bringing the Best of Brand Management to People at Work emphasizes the importance of a strong employer brand and states that it is critical to business success or failure. Improving employee commitment and engagement has been shown to reduce costs and improve revenues.
According to Barrow and Mosley, an organisation must recognize its purpose and values and define its organisational culture and core messages in order to begin to build a strong employer brand. Barrow and Mosley state that the core employer brand proposition should provide a differentiating hook for communication and shaping the employment experience. It is the only way to stand out from the hundreds of rival companies fighting for the best individuals.
The definitions of the perfect employer and employee vary somewhat. Finnish media firm Talentum’s Employer Image Survey 2014 suggests that interesting assignments, good management and an inspiring atmosphere are important factors for most people. However, others may appreciate for example adventure and international career opportunities above stability. Good employer brand management helps make perfect matches between employers and employees.
Barrow and Mosley emphasize that employer brand management requires cooperation between the HR, Communications and Marketing functions. Successful communications is essential in building a strong employer brand. This includes efficient internal and external communications. As always, the messages should be consistent, continuous and truthful.
If you think that you don’t have time for employer brand management, remember that a business is only as good as its employees. Ideally, employees will be committed to the success of the company and proud to be associated with it. If you don’t believe me, read the book. It is guaranteed to give you food for thought.