Employer Branding, what people say about you

July 10th 2020

“Your employer brand is what people say about you when you´re not in the room”
Kevin Hough – Head of Talent Acquisition - Pepsico

As the competition in almost every market has increased, so too has the competition to attract skilled employees. There is a common understanding across all organisations that it is necessary to attract the best talents, because they add real value, improving both the business and the company´s position in the market, thus reinforcing the relevance of human capital.

When a company is recruiting new employees, talent attraction strategies must be considered. The organizations must ask themselves several important questions: How will the candidates reach the company? What kind of candidates are interested in working in this specific organization? Are these the kind of professionals that I want in my company? In the current reality, it´s not enough to recruit people who have all the academic requirements and a determined previous experience, they must be the best resources the company can find at the given time, considering the current environment. They should fit the organizational culture, because a low quality recruitment process can have very significant costs for the organization.

An effective talent attraction strategy is not only helpful in recruiting the right person for available vacancies, but it´s also an effective retention plan for the current employees. If the company has a good reputation, they will want to stay and their degree of commitment to their workplace will strengthen, assuring solid teamwork and a positive environment, not only in the present, but also to the future (Maxwell and Knox, 2009).

The employer brand is essentially the internal and external image of an organization to their collaborators, and to their future collaborators. It´s the way others, and the employees themselves, perceive the company. An organization builds this reputation over time.
There are specific strategies that aim to adapt this image in line with the strategic objectives. In an early phase, the company must have a well-defined target audience, because the strategies and the image itself change in a natural way, according to those to whom the message is supposed to arrive. They can´t forget those that already are inside the company, because they represent one of the most important communication channels to the exterior.

To start an effective plan of employer branding it´s important to perceive how the brand is currently perceived in the market. This can be useful in order to understand what can be changed or even if it is necessary to change anything.

In the next stage, the Marketing Department can be an important ally in discovering how to create new channels of information circulation in order to directly reach the defined target audience. Once the strategies have already been implemented, frequent monitoring of their effectiveness is essential.

“We define the employer brand as the package of functional, economic and psychological benefits provided by employment and identified with the employing company. The main role of the employer brand is to provide a coherent framework for management to simplify and focus priorities, increase productivity and improve recruitment, retention as commitment.” (Ambler, 1996 cited in Barrow and Mosley, 2011).

In spite to what a superficial analysis of the subject might suggest, the establishment of a brand does not necessarily have to characterize the organization as a place where all the schedules are flexible, where a friendship among all employees is fostered by various social events and there are other team-building strategies. The image of a company should be consistent with what the market position wants to achieve or wishes to maintain according to the previously defined strategic objectives. It must be clear and assertive, whoever it is intended for, following the standards or even disregarding what is usually seen as attractive or common sense.

Writen by Andreia Cruz

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