What to do when your employer brand lacks luster

What to do when your employer brand lacks luster
Your employer brand is out there – with or without your involvement. If your organization has been having difficulty finding and keeping the talent it needs, it may be due in part to a stale employer brand. Taking an active part in building yours can attract new talent, retain current talent and boost your reputation as a great place to work.

If you suspect your employer brand is less than stellar, it’s time to start approaching talent attraction and retention in the same way you would your company brand. That approach typically requires asking some revealing questions:  Why would someone want to work for you? Would your current employees recommend your company as a great place to work? What is the perception candidates have about your employer brand? How do your employer and company brands intersect to promote your company mission?

It can be helpful to look at what successful companies are doing to foster an engaging company culture. Here are examples of several that have done an excellent job:

PwC:  One of PwC’s most innovative branding techniques is the employee stories on its career pages, where individual employees are highlighted through photos, bios, Q&A sessions and career timelines. Not only do these stories give job seekers a good idea of the kinds of people they’d work with at PwC, but they also show how PwC can help them meet their long-term career needs.

PetSmart:  PetSmart has a very simple message right at the start of their career page: everyone who works there loves pets. It’s this fundamental passion for pets that brings the company’s culture to life and unites its people. The company initially shared mostly images about puppies and kittens. Now they’re infusing more associate stories so that candidates can see themselves in a role and make a more personalized connection.

L’Oréal:  Consistently honored by entities such as Fortune as one of the world’s best places to work, L’Oreal developed an employee value proposition (EVP) by soliciting input from its employees. The EVP touts “a thrilling experience,” “an environment that will inspire you” and “a school of excellence for prospective employees.”

These examples of employer branding are not simply initiatives to attract talent. They reflect a business-wide strategy that supports long-term growth, improves employee retention and builds upon the overall company brand. Here are a few tips on how to make your company a place where people take pride in working:

Enhance the candidate experience

Develop a mobile-friendly career website where your job postings and application forms are streamlined and fully compatible with smart phones, ideally with a one-click application. Evaluate your career pages frequently and breathe new life into them as often as possible. Consider whether they’re too text-heavy or even too boring. Use real visuals if possible, instead of stock images. Monitor where candidates go on your site and make sure the message you’re sending attracts the right talent. Go beyond just posting jobs and touting your company awards. Initiate meaningful conversations, involve your own employees and make it fun and interesting. Try applying to your own openings to get a handle on the candidate experience. Is your process awkward and time-consuming? If it frustrates you, it will also frustrate potential candidates.