What Top Employer Brands Do That Your Business Isn’t Doing

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I recently presented at the HRO Conference in Singapore on Hudson RPO’s annual global research paper in partnership with HRO Today which focuses on what top employer brands do differently to other brands.

The primary research was gathered via one-on-one interviews with top employer brands plus a 3-week online survey of global senior HR practitioners (328 usable responses).

I found this research so practical and insightful for organisations that are still looking at how they build their employer brand and what activities they need to focus on.

Here a just a few of the findings that came out of the report.  If you’d like the full report (I highly recommend it!!) then download it here.

Strategy:

One of the biggest questions I get from clients when it comes to developing their employer brand is – where do we start?  Do we just refresh our EVP, or should we just update our career site? What if I put a few videos in there, will that be enough.   As with most big projects, we need to understand the objectives – what do you want your employer brand to do exactly?   Building a strategy to support the successful execution of a project is critical.

The research shows that twice as many top employer brands have a defined and documented employer brand strategy compared to other brands.

So I would ask you – does your business have an employer brand strategy or is it more of an activities focus.  If we just do these one or two things then we’ll be fine?  Is the strategy lead by the wider HR and Business strategy so that it’s tied into delivering what the business needs?  These are the types of questions that need to be asked.

Sponsorship

Not only do we need a strategy but we need someone who can champion that strategy.  The leader, the passionate crusader that understands what it’s all about, who understands the benefits and opportunities and is able to articulate that and position it in the right way to get the job done.

Once again, top brands were more likely to have CEO or President level sponsorship.   I think a lot of organisations are unsure how to have the commercial conversation around what quantifiable impact EB will have on the business therefore it’s not something that is discussed at C-suite or exec level.

EB research

 

Top brands also generally had stronger visibility of their employer brand across their senior leadership team.  By having the entire leadership team on board and behind what you are doing means that your ability to rally internal support and engagement will be higher.

Investment

I was having this conversation with the HRD of a large consulting firm the other day, and she commented that they need to see a return on investment before they will invest anything worthwhile.  And whilst there are things that can be done inexpensively, there needs to be some investment if any impact is to be made.  That might be cash investment or it could be resources investment – but something has to be given in order to get something in return.  We found that top employer brands invested 52% more than other brands.

Social Engagement

Top brands use more social channels to promote their employer brands, such as Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and Pinterest.  By using multiple channels you’re engaging current and potential employees in different ways. You’re provide multi content collateral for their consumption which is always going to more engaging that just one type of content in one place.

EB research2

 

Partnering for Success

As an employer brand strategy can be a project in itself with many different components, the research found that whilst 57% of organisations manage their employer brand internally and 61.3% of Top Brands partnered with an external business/consultant compared with 42.9% of other brands.  Bringing in specialised expertise to help you build a strategy as well as execute key activities will ensure you have targeted outcomes.

Defined Roles

Overall, top tier employer brand companies involved more departments and other groups in promoting their employer brand as seen below.   By ensuring that you’re using experts in your business to deliver input, advice and output for the employer brand project will not only share the work load but it will ensure that the employer brand is in line with the corporate and consumer brand as well.   44.6% of Top Employer Brands have defined roles compared with 17.6% of other brands.

Measuring Return on Investment

As always this one is a surprise to a degree.  We’re so focused on metrics and measuring everything but the Employer Brand is still the last thing to be measured.   61.4% of respondents said that they don’t measure return on investment when it comes to their Employer Brand whilst 22.4% weren’t sure.

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These are just some of the findings from the research undertaken.  The report provides break out “how to” boxes to make it not only informative but very practical.

If you’d like to discuss how your employer branding strategy can meet your business needs this year then drop me a message and we can discuss how we could potentially work together – suzanne.chadwick@hudson.com

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