Every year, companies invest tonnes of resource into building their employer brand.
Why? Because your employer brand is the cornerstone of your reputation as an employer. It’s very much a candidate-driven market, so you’re competing with other organisations for the same pool of talent.
How do you differentiate yourself from your competitors? How do you stand out amongst the crowd?
Simple – your employer brand.
As defined by the CIPD, your employer brand is:
“…a set of attributes and qualities, often intangible, that makes an organisation distinctive, promises a particular kind of employment experience, and appeals to those who will thrive and perform best in its culture.”
Ultimately, it boils down to how you position yourself as an ‘employer of choice’, amongst your competitors and the pool of candidates. Contrary to popular belief – it’s not all about how big you are as a company. It’s not about how successful you are, or how much money you make. It’s entirely about how your employees feel working for you.
According to Glassdoor – 69% of candidates would not take a job with a business that had a bad reputation.
It’s quite clear how important your employer brand is, especially in generating the greatest return possible for your recruitment endeavours. But, what mistakes could you be making that are damaging your employer brand?
Not understanding, or trying to understand, where you’re going wrong
Nothing is perfect, and mistakes will always be made. To save yourself from making the same mistakes over and over again – you need to understand exactly where you’re going wrong. Is there something wrong with your recruitment process? Do your management team require any additional management training?
At what point, in an employee’s experience with your brand, do things go wrong?
Finding this out is simple, and resolving the issues will work wonders for your employee turnover, experience, and employer brand. However, it does require some additional investment of resource.
Solution: Exit and Retention Interviews
It’s simple, isn’t it? If you don’t understand what’s going wrong – ask. The very people who are experiencing what’s wrong are your employees, and they’re the ones you should be asking.
Implementing an exit and retention interview solution is the perfect method for finding out what you need to know. The following questions could form the basis of your solution, and help you really get to the bottom of any employee issues your business suffers from:
- What do you enjoy about your role with us?
- Is there anything you would change about the role?
- What was your main reason for leaving our business?
- What could we have done differently to have made you stay?
- What advice would you give us to make future joiners more comfortable?
Use the information these questions give you to improve your recruitment process.
Your candidates don’t feel respected or valued, particularly if they don’t get the job
Regardless of what happens – it’s important to make sure your candidates’ experiences are always positive, respectful and fair.
Understandably – you can’t offer every applicant a job. Candidates know that, they understand it, and they respect it. You not offering them the role they applied for isn’t what damages your employer brand.
It’s how you do it. Also, in most instances – it’s whether or not you actually do it.
Think about it – candidates apply for a role with your company. They get through a couple of the initial pre-screening stages, after which your recruiters determine they aren’t suitable to continue through the process. You let all of them, regardless of how many there are, know the outcome – right?
Sadly – most companies don’t. Completely cutting your candidates off without even communicating with them is more damaging to your employer brand than letting them know they haven’t got the job.
Solving this issue all boils down to something as simple as communication.
Keep candidates informed throughout the process, from receipt of their application, through to the final decision your recruitment team make. There’s nothing more nerve-wracking for a candidate than waiting to hear back from an employer about a role you applied for.
There’s nothing worse than waiting to hear back from an employer, and not hearing anything at all.
There’s also nothing worse for your employer brand than having a bunch of candidates with negative opinions of your company, simply because they didn’t hear anything from you. Even if your communication is letting the candidates know they’ve not been successful – they’ll appreciate it a lot more than being left in the dark.
If you’d like to go the extra mile – offer candidates the opportunity to call your team to receive detailed feedback on their performance, and give them advice on where they went wrong and how they can improve it for next time.
Your company has a weak online presence, and you’re difficult to find
It’s common knowledge that, nowadays, all of your potential candidates will be researching your company, and trying to find out as much as they possibly can. Why? Every bit of information they find will help inform whether or not they actually want to work for you.
That being said – potential candidates can only find the information if it’s there to be found.
In an environment as competitive as recruitment, especially in some sectors, this lack of information can often be the difference between receiving the application, and not. In that vein – the candidate that doesn’t end up submitting an application may well have been the one who would’ve received the job offer.
With your online presence, it’s not necessarily a case of damaging your employer brand – it’s more that it will never truly materialize.
So, how do you solve this problem?
Solution: Update your Website & Manage your Social Channels
Having a company Facebook page and Twitter account is a good start – but it’s no longer as simple as that. Job seekers and potential candidates expect employers to have built and be maintaining a strong online presence across multiple channels. What does this mean? It means a user-friendly company website and active social media accounts as a bare minimum.
You don’t need to invest hours of marketing and recruitment resource into building your online presence. It all starts with talking about recent company news across your social channels, sharing photos and videos of achievements, and generally showing pride in your brand.
More importantly – engage with potential candidates as often as you can. Respond to their reviews. Ask and answer questions. Share relevant content. Keep them involved in the conversation.
Building a strong employer brand will always make your company more appealing to potential candidates. Something as simple as this can help you compete in the market, and gain the upper hand over your competitors. Whilst it’s simple to build – it’s also just as easy to undo all of your hard work and send yourself back to square one.
To build a believable employer brand – you need to be a good employer. There’s no way to fake it. You need to understand where you’re going wrong, communicate with all of your candidates regardless of the outcome, and get yourself online.
Your employer brand isn’t just a passing trend – it’s something that can, and will, directly affect the success of your recruitment efforts.