A successful company without employer branding is no longer conceivable. Each employer brand should first be established and then maintained if possible in order to maintain a high level of attractiveness as an employer on the job market. At best, even a company’s competitiveness is enhanced sustainably. Is there a company does not want to be considered as a top priority company on the candidate market and choose from numerous talents? Much needs to be done to achieve this goal, however.
With employer branding to greater employer attractiveness
Most industries repeatedly complain about staff shortages and in particular the shortage of skilled staff. And they also know the reason: demographic change is to blame! One can either become annoyed, or simply present themselves more attractively than other companies on the labour market. Many company directors and their human resources managers have already changed their approach and are taking counteractive measures on the labour market by organizing talent contests for example. This also serves to give employees and possible applicants an attractive impression of an employer. However, employer branding is only one instrument of personnel marketing as it goes beyond the actual recruitment in the labour market, i.e. for an attractive corporate appearance one should not flirt only with job exchanges.
Employer brand: cultural values & philosophy of a company
The outward appearance of a company plays a very important role for potential employees. The employer brand indicates to applicants what the company stands for as an employer, which corporate philosophy it pursues and provides information on the system of values within a company. The aim, of course, is to enable the employee and the applicant to recognise their own cultural values and feel associated with the company like a „friend“. This serves to not only create employee loyalty but also motivate employees.
The following questions are to be posed for employer branding as part of creating an employer brand:
- Which values does the company have?
- In a word – what does the company stand for?
- What is undertaken to motivate employees?
- Are employees offered opportunities? If yes, which?
- How is the company currently perceived on the candidate market?
- What follows for the vigilant entrepreneur is only logical: He that does good, should talk about it. Target group-oriented communication both internally and externally and emotional presentation of the company’s characteristics are essential.
Employee value proposition: the heart of an employer brand
The so-called employee value proposition, or EVP, is the promise an employer makes to applicants and employees. As a complement to USP, it expresses what is distinctive, unique about a company. Every employer is unique. It is usually difficult for outsiders to recognize this distinction on the company’s website. However, it is not enough to define the EVP and communicate it vigorously.
The employer branding should be like a central theme throughout a company. The target groups must first be analysed, employees must be ideally won over as ambassadors and the employer campaign must be given substance. Placing well thought-out recruitment ads in various media is not sufficient in order to address future employees.
Human recourses marketing via XING, Facebook and others.
Once the employer brand has been developed, it must also be fixed in the minds of skilled workers in the labour market. This can be done by initially launching of marketing campaigns. Particularly popular are authentic employers who indicate in a pleasant way that they are dedicated professionals but nevertheless with a heart and soul.
Especially in times of declining numbers of professional newcomers, the best preconditions for successful recruiting are provided only with a professional and well-planned human resources marketing.
Choosing right media channel depending on the target audience is promising in human resources marketing. Not only offline activities such as career fairs should be used. The most promising approach is human resources marketing via the Internet through corporate career sites or job adverts on online job exchanges. Especially the area of social media with Facebook, Google+, XING, LinkedIn, Twitter and YouTube channels is used by students, skilled personnel and executives for job searching. But caution! Using flyers, brochures, classic job adverts, trade fair exhibits and online activities for recruitment will lead to success in the medium to long term only if the measures are strategically coordinated.
Diversity Management: always be fair!
The variety of forms of work has increased due to the multitude of different ways of life due not only to demographic change but also through globalization, European integration, and the shift in values. Here is where diversity management – the human resources and organizational development approach – comes into play.
Diversity management measures involve, for example, targeted recruitment strategies, different work-life balance options and the establishment of intercultural teams. Properly implemented it thus helps to create a culture of appreciation and recognition.
With regard to the employer branding, it is important to not only communicate these measures to the workforce but also to candidates. This increases the attractiveness as an employer and in most cases leads to a wider volume of candidates, which in turn brings about an increased quality of new employees. In addition to a positive perception of image enhancement, this management also opens up additional resources to the company.
International recruiting: increase productivity
International recruitment should also be considered in this context. Innovations are more easily discovered in brainstorming sessions and by working with people from different backgrounds. Addressing an extended target group can thus mean an increase in the productivity for a company. If marketing a company’s products abroad is planned, it is obvious that a composite workforce can bring about many benefits with skilled personnel from the target country.
Promote talents & skilled personnel: retain staff
Considering the prevailing shortage of skilled workers, keeping top-performing and qualified employees in the company is of course is a very important goal and result quantity in employer branding. This can be achieved and supported, for example, by positive incentives for talented staff. In this way, professional competence can be lastingly retained in the company. Cost of recruitment can thus be minimized and the attractiveness as an employer can remain intact outwardly.
In addition, the motivation and thus the performance of a satisfied employee is higher if he or she has a feeling of complete well being at his or her workplace.
An employee survey is one way of determining what exactly motivates employees in a company. And continuously at that. A change in mood in the company can be identified early and counteractive measures can be taken accordingly. According to some studies such as a study from Kienbaum, being satisfied with the work in the working environment, the relationship of employees to each other and to immediate superiors are at the top of the list of priorities even ahead of salaries for young workers.
Employer feedback via kununu and others: Employees let off steam when frustrated
Satisfaction with the employer – or better still – the opposite is often communicated. Employees can get their frustration with an employer off their chests with the help of many websites such as kununu.com, jobvote.com and meinchef.de. These sites are read! About valuable talented staff of the company, but in particular also on the candidate market. The potential damage to the employer brand and thus the employer attractiveness by the negative comments about the employer in the network is enormous.
Successfully control communications within the company
Internal communications in terms of personnel advertising and education of an authentic employer brand is becoming increasingly important. It is also a part of the employer branding and helps to bind employees to the company. It is not only the motivation of the employees of a company, which is made public, but also the flow of information to which skilled staff are exposed. A positive image can be easily influenced by employees who tell family and friends about the pleasant working environment.
Traditional advertising or expensive PR campaigns can by far not achieve the level of credibility as a long time acquaintance. Easy to implement, but rarely successfully implemented: integration of employees into corporate communications. The employer brand is additionally strengthened in this way and potential employees are won over who were not at all actively involved in job exchanges such as XING or StepStone.
The perfect corporate image through external communication
In the context of employer branding, not only future employees should be addressed through goal-oriented personnel marketing, it is also worthwhile to involve business associates and journalists to convey the desired image.
In order to reach all groups, it is necessary to use of several communication channels. Online activities should be utilised to a greater extent in addition to traditional public relations and media relations and traditional advertising. These include online PR, social media, multimedia, and mobile marketing just to name a few.
Several communication channels should often be used simultaneously to achieve the desired effect on the markets. Appearances at career fairs are accompanied, for example, by promotional activities on career sites the success of which is additionally promoted by press relations.
Using social media activities as employer branding instrument offers the great advantage of enabling the employer to communicate eye to eye with its potential employees. Direct communication with the target audiences is thus naturally much easier and more relaxed.
SME campaign: social commitment is always well received!
The employer attractiveness is also very positively influenced when companies show social commitment. Both employees as well as employers benefit from this. On the one hand, many customers and business associates attach great importance to this quality, and a good reputation is simply the best form of advertising on the other. Employees also value a socially oriented employer highly and enjoy a healthy working environment, which usually goes hand in hand with this attitude. If skilled personnel like to go to work, they are more productive and the quality of their work also benefits.
Conclusion employer branding
The aim of the employer branding strategy is to highlight a business as a special and particularly interesting employer for potential employees and to positively influence the image and outward appearance.
This, however, is not the only reason for a company to utilise employer branding. It also includes strengthening employee loyalty. Targeted advertising is not only beneficial to the corporate image, candidates are also able to define their expectations of the company better.
High quality work and a sufficient number of skilled workers can be ensured only in company that has a congenial working atmosphere. If special attention is paid and several employer branding measures are implemented, the demographic development in the candidate market will have no affect on us whatsoever!
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