Investing in developing a strong employer brand saves time and money in the long run by ensuring the best talent can be recruited and retained.
A strong employer brand also benefits wider organisational aims and customer satisfaction. For this reason, CJA is often approached by clients asking how we can help them be an employer of choice. The answer to this complex question is unique to each organisation, but before we can answer this, clients are asked 4 important questions:
1. Who do you want to attract?
No organisation can be an employer of choice for everyone. It is important to be specific about your target market. Don’t be afraid to accept your employer brand won’t appeal to everyone, but do shamelessly promote your brand in the places where your target audiences are proven to be found.
2. Why should prospective candidates choose your organisation?
What does your organisation do and where is it heading? All the clients we work with exist to benefit society. Whilst they all share this common trait, how they make a difference to people’s lives varies greatly. What is unique about your organisation’s aims?
3. What is it really like to work at your organisation?
People respond best to real life stories and particularly how existing employees have made a tangible impact in their roles; how they have been able to progress during their time within the organisation; the leadership culture; and the people they have been able to learn from. Aim to develop and encourage employer brand ambassadors across your departments – people who can enthuse others by sharing their passion for the role.
4. How do you give a positive candidate experience that stands out from your competitors?
The first experience most people will have of your employer brand is when looking to apply for a job with your organisation, which for many is a daunting task. The vast majority will be unsuccessful, which will leave feelings of disappointment, but this doesn’t mean they should be left with a negative experience, discouraging them, and potentially others from applying in the future. It is important to consider every stage of the candidate journey, how guidance can be communicated effectively to give them the best chance to bring the best out of themselves, how candidates are kept informed of the progress of their application and how they are treated professionally and courteously at each stage. Aim to have every candidate want to speak highly of the recruitment process, regardless of whether they are successful or not.
The above list is not exhaustive, nor should it be considered as a one-off exercise. Most organisations are unlikely to have the capacity or resources to answer every question immediately. It is important to identify what you can do well in-house and where further expertise is needed.