On the heels of the new announcement that the economy added 304,000 jobs in January, employers are scrambling more than ever before to find skilled employees. It’s difficult in an environment where the unemployment rate is so low, and there’s simultaneously a skills shortage for a lot of the open positions.
Employers have to focus their marketing strategies not just on the consumer or their targeted clients but on employees. Digital marketing and marketing, in general, to attract and retain employees is based on something called your employer brand.
Even large companies are working on filling positions. For example, on Glassdoor, you’ll see the company LegalZoom is working on filling some higher-level positions.
With that being said, what can you do to build and develop a great employer brand and market not just to clients but to prospective employees?
How Do You Do Compare to the Competition?
For years employers were in the driver’s seat. They had a plethora of highly qualified talent to choose from, and they got to call the shots. That’s not the case now, and not only is it tough to find employees but you have to do competitor research much like you would with any traditional branding or marketing campaign.
You need to look and see what your competitors are doing to find and keep talent, how they’re marketing jobs and how you stack up compared to them.
Take the time to see what they’re doing and how it’s working. Does your company look like a less compelling place to work than your key competitors?
Know What Makes Up Your Employer Brand
While it can vary slightly from company-to-company, there are some key things that make up an employer brand.
There are the more obvious things like your website and your social media profiles. Beyond that, your job postings are an integral part of your employer brand. You want job postings that are detailed, relevant and speak to not only the technical and logistical elements of the job but also give a feel for the corporate culture. Also important are reviews past and current employees have left on sites.
Your responsiveness and the way you respond when people apply to jobs and have interviewed is important to your employer brand also.
Define Your Corporate Culture
We already touched on the role of corporate culture in your employer brand a bit above, but do you even have a definable culture? How do you hire for culture fit or promote your culture if you don’t know what it is?
You should think about creating a culture persona. Start by looking at your current employees and thinking about the characteristics of the ones that you consider your best-of-the-best. What do they have that makes them so great and so invaluable? Use this as a guide for culture personas that you can then use to build your employer brand.
You might also want to think about going to the source and doing research by asking your current employees how they feel about their job and where they work.
There’s something that’s important to employees in the modern era, and it’s relatively easy to provide but frequently overlooked. Sometimes even more than traditional perks or salary increases, employees want to feel like their employer is investing in them and offering opportunities for growth.
You can integrate this into your employer brand first by making the possible pipelines apparent. If employees perform well, what can they expect regarding growth potential and opportunity? Let employees or recruits know that you want to hire internally, and that’s important to the organization.
Beyond that, offer learning and development opportunities to help employees learn new skills and be better prepared to progress in their careers.
Mentorship programs can also be part of this.
Create personalized talent maps and make sure that strong relationships between employees and supervisors are a top priority.
Employer Brand Campaigns
Finally, as with any other marketing campaign, you’re going to have to create a strategy and a set of steps for how you’ll meet your goals regarding your employer brand.
Set metrics you can measure in specific terms. For example, maybe you make your goal to increase candidate engagement or to get more applicants. Whatever your objectives are, you need to measure success and progress regularly to see where changes need to be made, as is the case with any marketing campaign.