Employer Branding: How to differentiate yourself as an employer

Julie Taylorson
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January 9, 2020

Every company has a reputation. It could include thoughts about your products, services, leaders, team members, history, and more. And your company’s reputation can also go beyond to inspire a specific perception — emotional, instinctive, intellectual — in the people who see your ads, use your products, and eventually, speak to others about you. That reputation is known as your brand, and it can be a powerful, mysterious, and synergistic force — far more than just what you sell or office. 

 Your company also has a second brand related to its primary brand but representing how you’re viewed as an employer. This is your employer brand, and it lives and breathes in the minds and hearts of your former, current, and future employees. 

 In today’s increasingly competitive job market, a positive employer brand is critical. Without one, hiring and retaining the best employees becomes challenging — and costly. You need talented, leadership-bound workers to drive your business forward, and the best way to find them is to cast the impression that your company is a great place to work. Everything from the salary and benefit packages you offer to advancement opportunities, the culture of an organization and the treatment of its employees can greatly impact the impression you’re trying to make on potential candidates. 

As with all branding, crafting a strong employer brand is about good storytelling. It’s about how you want your organization to be perceived in the marketplace, using specific messaging to help attract the kind of prospects you’re looking for. But also, it’s about living out that story. Satisfied employees are your loudest speaker box, particularly in an age of social media and user-generated feedback where employers aren’t always completely in control of their own reputation.
 

The good news is that with even small, simple tweaks, companies can improve their employer branding strategies in order to attract, recruit, and retain the best employees. 

 Tips to Improve Your Branding as an Employer 

Here are five ways to improve your brand as an employer: 

  • Invest in social media

    Social media can either make or break your business. With employees speaking their minds on Twitter, Facebook and job recruitment sites, whether you intend to or not, you do have a social media presence. Take the opportunity to control the narrative. Make sure that the social media gateway you use to advertise your company gives insight to a desirable work environment for potential employees. Showing on social media that you value your employees can be a good start. Take the time to post testimonials of employees, gather footage of the working environment, and focus on giving the idea of a stable, compassionate, but driven work environment. This is a great start to owning your social media presence.

  • Work on your website

    Potential employees are likely to look for at your website to get an idea of the skill set necessary to land a job. Often, people are put off by a slow or poorly designed page. For this reason, designing a dynamic website that is quick and easy to navigate can get you far more applications at the drop of a hat. Also, keeping your requirements for the job simple and focusing on the potential employee’s skill set alone stops people from running off as soon as they view the page. Have HR software or a system on standby to answer all questions that potential candidates might have regarding the job offer. 

  • Be thoughtful when rejecting applicants

    The experience you give applicants when they don’t make the cut goes a long way to determine if they will re-apply the next time you post an open position. More importantly, like any consumer experience, they are much more likely to share their experience with friends, or worse on social media, if it’s a negative experience.  As a minimum, letting applicants know they weren’t successful allows them closure and removes uncertainty from their job search. This is even more important for those that invested time attending interviews. If you feel that your internal recruitment process could be improved, contact a Partner at Taylor Ryan for advice –  Julie@Taylorryan.com 

  • Cultivate a culture

     These days, no one is willing to work for a company that does not give any sense of fulfillment to its workers. A company with a bad reputation has far lower chances of attracting new recruits, even if the recruits are indeed desperate for a job. Cultivate a passionate, disciplined, yet healthy work culture for all your employees. Put in place competitive benefits, learning opportunities, and a few employee appreciation perks every once in a while.   Once the environment is well-cultivated, people will be rushing to join your organization. Check out our next newsletter for deeper view of culture. 

  • Set up an internal referral system

    Establish a program in which employees can market open positions to their friends and connections and receive a reward for their referral. Having a system that encourages new applicants every time is sure to push your employees to bring in star talent who can move the company forward, allowing you to achieve your goals. That way, recruitment becomes simpler and the employee is a few bucks richer and happier as well. Everybody wins. 

 Having a great brand as an employer goes a long way towards determining the future of your company. It also dictates the kind of talent that will walk through your doors. Take some time to evaluate and work on the message you are giving your employees and the outside world, and your company will be better for it. 

If you need help with any People related issues or hiring: CONTACT A PARTNER AT TAYLOR RYAN for a free consultation.