How to be the brand everyone wants to work for

How to be the brand everyone wants to work for teaser

Date published 18 Aug 2021

By Meredith Simpson, Senior Business Director at Metrix Consulting

If you’re finding it hard to recruit the talented employees your business needs, it might be time to take a fresh look at your employer branding.

Many industry sectors are experiencing critical labour shortages, with reports of firms taking desperate measures to secure staff. WA’s mining boom is demanding an ever-growing workforce while offering irresistible incentives, and COVID-19 continues to put pressure on the job market by curtailing the arrival of workers from interstate and overseas.

Putting your best foot forward has never been more important if you want to secure, engage and retain a happy workforce.

But how do you position yourself as an employer of choice? How do you increase your appeal as an employer without simply driving up remuneration rates? Offering more pay and perks might only work in the short-term if employees driven purely by financial reward bounce from one employer to the next.

Check in with your business brand
Employer branding goes deeper than just your reputation and being a “good place to work”. As a starting point, think of your employer brand and your overarching business brand as one and the same. The aim of both is to connect with people.

In other words, how you want prospective employees to think about your business should be the same as how you want your customers to think about your business. It’s those values and attributes – the things that make your business tick – that provide the foundation for a strong brand.

Be inclusive
When developing your core values chose your words carefully and thoughtfully. Make sure they’re inclusive, positive and inspiring. This is language that will resonate with potential candidates.

Pressure-test your core values
There’s no getting away from the fact that you’ve got to walk the talk when it comes to employer branding. It’s no good saying one thing and doing another. What you live and breathe as an organisation has to be reflected across the board because any disconnect is likely to discourage candidates already spoilt for choice.

Ask yourself what assumptions prospective employees might make about your business when they look behind the logo and the website? What does the environment you work in look and feel like, for example? For some employers, it might simply be a case of making small refinements to bring core values to life. It’ll be a bigger shift for those starting from scratch, but one that will pay dividends in the long run.

Embrace the change
The workplace is undergoing huge cultural change. Flexible hours, work-from-home, remote working, hybrid workplaces and greater diversity and inclusion are all shaping the way businesses operate. No longer is it just money that talks. Welcoming change may unlock a whole new pool of talent.

Go to the source
Chances are you know exactly what your customers are looking for. But do you know what the modern employee wants? Talking to your existing workforce is likely to uncover invaluable insights. The same goes for prospective employees and those preparing to enter your industry. This will not only help shape what you offer as an employer, but also how you talk about it. At the end of the day, employees want to feel they’re being looked after. They want to feel they are working for an organisation that’s got its act together.

Your current employees are likely to have their finger on the pulse, both in terms of what their employer of choice looks like and what others in the market are offering. An annual employee engagement survey helps you get a measure of what your employees’ pain points are and what they like about working for you. It’s not just a scorecard, it’s a tangible way of assessing how you’re performing in line with your core values and how you can do even better. 

Regular employee engagement research will help you manage and monitor your employer brand. At Metrix Consulting we can drill down into how effectively your core values are being translated across your business and out into the world. We then turn these insights into business strategy and items you can action.

Be consistent
Evaluate how your employer brand stacks up across all potential touch points, including website, social media and shopfront or office. All are opportunities to engage with potential employees. What do they say about your business, its philosophy and the sort of systems and processes you have in place?

Harness the power of referrals
The saying “word of mouth is the best form of advertising” rings true for recruitment. When canvassing insights from your team, ask the question: Would you recommend us as a place to work? You might not only get some surprising insights, but you’re also likely to get strong candidates walking through the door if your existing employees advocate for you as an employer.
 

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