“Learn from the mistakes of others. You can’t live long enough to make them all yourself.”
― Eleanor Roosevelt
Building and maintaining a strong employer brand is a crucial factor that helps employers to attain the most talented people for their organisations. If your potential and current employees value your brand as a great place to work, it makes an HR job easier and more efficient.
A strong employer brand can attract more candidates and decrease cost-per-hire significantly. It will also cause higher employee engagement and improve their retention. However, developing a powerful employer brand is a complex, challenging and long-lasting process.
For over a decade of our experience as employer branding strategists, we’ve come across numerous mistakes that employers can make during this process.
Let’s preview the most common ones together and learn how to avoid them!
1. Conviction that you don’t need an employer brand
Yes, this is the first mistake a lot of employers still make. Employer brand is just as important as your consumer brand. Even if today your talent flow is doing well, the talent market is becoming more competitive than ever. In many regions or industries, starting, for instance, from IT sector, the market is already candidate-driven. This means that a candidate is the one who chooses the employer, not the opposite.
Your business growth depends on people and it is in your hands, as an employer, to ensure your candidate pipeline will flow in the future years. A professionally managed employer brand can be your best friend in this process, these days it can’t be overlooked.
2. Becoming a hero of one-time employer branding campaign
Employer branding is way more complex than many companies think. You can’t simply approach it as a one-time action to be once completed and then left out. It is a long-term process that needs to be planned and strategised in order to last and work in favour of human resources team.
The employer brand needs to evolve, based on the market and organisation’s needs. Planning long-term goals and KPIs are necessary to keep it fresh and up to date.
3. Not delivering the promises
The employer brand needs to be authentic. Developing even the most attractive brand concept won’t help if it is not covered by the real facts and values. Remember to always keep your promises.
If your employer branding offer includes the great office or certain degree of flexibility, and your employees don’t actually receive it, it will result in a negative employee experience and simple disappointment. Keep your employees truly satisfied with the employer offer they were promised when they came to work for your company. This approach will turn them into your best ambassadors, spreading the positive impression, not vice versa.
4. Not listening to employees
Your employees are the most important pillar that drives the business, serves the customer and builds the company’s culture. They are also the best source of knowledge what your employer brand truly means and why they choose it over others.
Not listening to the employee’s voice and opinion is losing a chance to see the internal perspective. On the contrary, respecting employee or candidate experience will increase their sense of engagement, make them feel valued, and will allow you to gather the most reliable qualitative data.
5. Not being creative enough
On a highly competitive, candidate-driven market you need to stand out. If you are a great employer – show it! There a dozens of communication channels to reach and engage the potential employee, and to be remembered.
It is up to your role, as an employer, to prove to your candidates that they should work for you, and to your employees what they can be proud of. Outside-of-the-box ideas pay back. Yet, most of the employers keep their communication way too conservative and simply… boring.
Don’t follow the employer brand guidelines to strictly. Take inspirations from consumer brand campaigns and marketing insights. Reach your target groups like your candidates were your clients. Make your offer outstanding in the eyes of your candidates. Engage your current employees to share their ideas and involve them in employer branding actions, too.
6. Underestimating the budget
If you come back to the first point, it is not surprising that many employers do not see the need of spending budget on their employer brand. Yes, you can do a lot of great communication actions at affordable costs, like events organised by your current employees or social media employee generated content.
Certainly, creating a solid employer brand that lasts is a time and money consuming process. More and more organisations and managers are already aware that employer branding significantly drives ROI, which can be measured by e.g. cost per hire, employee turnover reduction, among other factors. Think of an employer brand as an investment, not as a cost.
7. Lack of agility
Employer branding needs to evolve and adjust to the rapidly developing economy and the world. Therefore, what has become your source of success today may require completely different course of action tomorrow. You need to constantly analyse the market and ask your employees and candidates for feedback.
The combination of internal and external data sources will allow you to stay ahead and react for changes before they happen. Don’t abstain from making changes or using the modern technologies in employer branding and in your entire business as well.
8. Not measuring the employer brand
The employer brand is an intangible matter, we agree. Yet, it is worth trying to quantify it. Employer Branding Institute research has found that there’s over 520 metrics that can be tracked and audited with the help of AI-based algorithms.
As a result, they have designed an intuitive platform that allows employers to track all the KPIs, included in over 250 organisational (employer branding, human resources, internal communication) processes based on your organisation’s data!
As a result, you receive a strategic report, with over a hundred strategic recommendations, that allows you to establish KPIs for your employer branding strategy. Combined with qualitative research on your candidates and current employees, it is a really powerful analytical tool that supports your employer brand management.
One audit involves all the aspects of your employer brand, e. g. candidate experience, applicant pipeline, employee retention, communication channels, and over 250 more that for a human being are hard to track and nearly impossible to analyse at once.
Why not help yourself with modern technologies when it comes to HR and employer branding?
We hope our list will inspire you to keep up the positive course of your employer branding actions and become like an employer branding magnet for candidates!
If you need any employer branding support, we are all for you – say hi at firstname.lastname@example.org!
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