Articles

Attracting the best employee talent to your brand

SHORT READ

The meaning and value employees expect from their work lives have never been more in focus.

 

 

The perfect storm that led to the Great Resignation made many fortunate enough to have some autonomy over their career choice and their position in the workforce. More than ever before, fulfilment and satisfaction, in all their guises, became the driving narrative. This manifested itself in two big questions: ‘am I getting enough out of my job?’ and ‘does the company I work for reflect my values?’

No organisation can fully answer the first question, but answering the second one in a volatile employment landscape should be paramount to every business. Any company that isn’t considering how to align its brand to the needs of its future workforce is in danger of losing out to competitors — not only in their sector but increasingly to progressive businesses with brands that talk directly to their potential workforce.

 

In the battle for the best talent, it’s about more than ping-pong tables and free beer on Friday; it’s about creating a meaningful value proposition for all your employees and then communicating it in ways potential recruits find engaging and compelling.

 

Increasingly your employer brand needs the business, staff and especially your leaders to be active and at the forefront of the significant conversations affecting society.

 

The days of simply paying lip service by pasting phrases such as ‘inclusivity’ and ‘belonging’ onto your recruitment page and hoping to tick the appropriate boxes are long gone — especially when your Gen Z and Millennial audience will be scrutinising your every move to judge whether you’re living up to your values.

 

Drawing a hard distinction between a business’s customer-facing brand and its employer brand begins to feel too disjointed in today’s work environment. There is sound reasoning for your employer brand and your outward-facing consumer/business brand running in close harmony — as sister brands: Millennials are attracted to employer brands that they admire as if they were consumers.

Potential employees are judging companies not just by their services or the products they produce but increasingly by how they act across the board.

 

As the worlds of work and leisure blur, our expectations of how we spend our time in the workplace come under closer scrutiny, employer brands need to echo this shift: there is no reason for them to look any less considered, coherent and dynamic than the master brand.

 

In a market where talent is scarce and the candidate is more of an active customer than ever before — the onus is on the employer to develop a brand that engages and converts them. If you’re not investing in that employer brand — if the values you’ve spent time defining aren’t translating to potential recruits — it’ll be harder to attract the talent that will push your business forward.

 

Going forwards, it’s easy to imagine workplaces where the brand is defined less by the leadership and more by the staff. Organisations with internal brands grow that change in tune with their staff’s beliefs and concerns. Brands that talk from the staff’s experience, direct to the needs of future employees.

Tools such as Workplace from Meta (touted as a FaceBook for business) bring the concept of EX, employee experience, to the forefront. As they claim: “Employee experience is when organisations put the holistic experience of employees at the centre of their decision-making.”

 

It’ll be interesting to see how EX, once adopted and embedded, will influence an employer brand. After all, the more you understand the experience of all your staff, the more you can create a brand entirely reflective of your organisation.