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Employer branding

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  • 1. executive brief | employer brandingActivating the Employer Brand11414 west park place, suite 202milwaukee, wisconsin 53224414.410.0500 fax 414.410.0520milwaukee | new yorkwww.versantsolutions.com
  • 2. Activating the Employer Brand EmployEr BrAnding dEfinEd A highly-leveraged employer brand can An employer brand is the sum of all the transform an organization into a place where characteristics and distinguishable features top talent wants to work – an employer of that prospective candidates and current choice. When successfully implemented, employees perceive about an organization’s employees believe in and embody the brand, employment experience. The employment carrying it through the entire employment experience serves as the foundation of the experience. In contrast, an organization with employer brand and includes tangibles such a poorly managed or undefined employer as salary, rewards and benefits, but also brand could find itself investing in employees extends to intangibles such as an organ- not aligned with key business objectives and ization’s culture, values, management style hiring candidates that do not fit the and opportunities for employee learning, organization’s culture. development and recognition. BrAnd ActivAtion procEss Just as a well-managed consumer brand VersantWorks leverages a proven process to aims to differentiate a product’s identity, tell activate an employer brand. The process a product’s story and reflect a product’s consists of four distinct steps that result in value, a well-managed employer brand aims the gradual alignment of an organization with to differentiate an employer’s identity, tell an the desired state of its employer brand. employer’s story and reflect an employer’s value proposition to employees. 1. Discovery 2. Road Map Once identified, an employer brand can be 3. Activate leveraged as a tool in marketing the 4. Measure employment experience to current and potential employees. Through strategic and These four steps ensure an organization’s ongoing employer brand management, an employer brand is comprehensive, relevant organization can accelerate the attraction of and positioned to drive results. Each step in best-fit candidates, increase the retention of the brand activation process forms the high-performing employees and drive foundation for the next, and the continuous employee engagement toward business nature of the process ensures the employer objectives. brand remains connected to the employment experience over time. four-step process for activating the brand Discovery Road Map Activate Measure • Objective • Strategy & • Targeted • Impact Analysis Tactics Communications • Market Analysis • Brand Positioning • Apply Brand • Check Progress Statement to Communications Against Goals • Customer Analysis • Brand Promise & Voice • Communicate Brand • Examine Impact • Communications to Target Audiences of Industry & Market Analysis • Logo & Tagline • Adjust Strategy & • Associate Analysis • Brand Guidelines Tactics as needed • Brand Launch & Marketing Communication Plans2
  • 3. Activating the Employer Brandstep one: discovery • Provide a context in which virtually anyThe Discovery step is an independent assess- desirable attribute or service can bement of an organizations current work envi- discussedronment in terms of values, culture and All areas affecting the employment experi-employee satisfaction. During Discovery, key ence are then examined to determine wherethemes are identified, as well as gaps in per- the organization is not in complete align-ception between an organization’s leader- ment with the employer brand. From this, aship and employees. The multilayered Road Map that documents recommendedresearch effort often includes focus groups, strategies and tactics is created to guide theinterviews and online surveys. Existing data alignment of the organization and its employ-such as current employee demographic er brand, which may include:information, retention data, employee satisfac- • Changes to align internal programs,tion surveys and exit interviews, is also used. policies and procedures with the employer brandDiscovery information is compiled, analyzedand then presented to the organizations • Executive learning to align managementemployer brand stakeholder/leadership behavior with the employer brandteam. The resulting knowledge and insight • Recommendations to align internalabout the employment experience serve as communications with the employer brandthe foundation for developing an employer and retain high-performing employeesbrand identity during Road Map. • Recommended to align recruitmentstep two: road map marketing with the employer brand and attract best-fit candidatesDuring Road Map, the identity of theemployer brand is developed. Key elements The Road Map is presented to the organiza-include the development of an employer tions employer brand stakeholder/leader-brand promise and employer brand voice. ship team. To get the process underway, VersantWorks then facilitates a managementAn employer brand promise is a statement implementation planning session based onto employees that describes the rational and the Road Map recommendations.emotional benefit employment will bring toemployees’ lives. To be valuable, it should: step three: Activate• Be viewed as a constant ideal by all The goals of the Activate step are to create stakeholders an understanding of the employer brand• Communicate the essence of the promise across target audiences and foster employment experience while revealing acceptance of the employer brand identity the principles of the organizations as an active, guiding force throughout the leadership organization. The Activate step involves an integrated communications approach that is• Capture employees imagination and unique and determined by each organiza- inspire them to deliver on the organizations tions target audiences. Tactics may include: promise to its customers • Templates, video, print, Web and otherAn employer brand voice is a set of verbal materials for use at all-employee and/ordescriptors that provides the tonality, attitude staff meetings to assist managers inand behavior targets for all stakeholders. To introducing the employer brandbe valuable, it should: • Development of a communication calendar• Provide criteria to measure the relevance for continually reinforcing the employer of internal communications brand, using different media and messaging to keep the employer brand vibrant and an• Encourage a consistent style of active part of the culture communication with employees• Help to understand the essence of the organization 3
  • 4. Activating the Employer Brand • Leadership learning workshops focusing 3. Lead by creating a learning organization on the techniques and behaviors needed 4. Align key talent management and HR to manage workgroups in alignment with programs focused on recruitment, the employer brand promise engagement and retention with your • Consultation and recommendations on employer brand internally marketing HR programs in 5. Seek independent and continual feedback alignment with the employer brand from outside sources • Career Web site enhancements • Orientation materials for new hires, ABout vErsAntWorks integrated with messaging from the versantWorks is a specialty practice within recruitment process, to assure seamless Versant, a full-service marketing firm. We onboarding leverage our creative, interactive, media and consulting expertise to provide employers • Internal signage and other visual reminders with focused communication solutions that: to further reinforce the employer brand • Capture the mission, values and spirit of step four: measure the employment experience The Measure step involves additional • Align employees with the organization’s research to re-assess employee perceptions strategy and vision and evaluate the success of employer • Attract best-fit talent branding efforts in achieving retention, engagement and recruitment goals set by • Increase employee retention and workforce the organization. Armed with this information, engagement adjustments to communication strategies and tactics are identified to ensure continued Within VersantWorks, we’ve categorized our employer brand alignment. capabilities into two areas: talent manage- ment and organizational change. Our talent stAying rElEvAnt ovEr timE management solutions cover recruitment marketing, employee communications, work- Just like consumer branding, the process of force engagement and employer branding. employer branding is never finished. The Our organizational change solutions cover business environment is constantly changing, change communications and merger & and with it the relationship between acquisition communications. organizations and their employees will continue to change. Thats not to say businesses should adopt entirely new employer brands every few years, but rather that the employer brand activation process should be used over time to remain relevant as the employment experience and talent market evolves. VersantWorks recommends that organiza- tions incorporate the following best practices to stay relevant and be successful in their employer branding efforts: 1. Develop a clear, appropriate and deliverable employer brand and market it to employees and candidates as a brand 2. Adopt demographic and generational marketing, learning and teaching practices4
  • 5. 11414 west park place, suite 202milwaukee, wisconsin 53224414.410.0500 fax 414.410.0520milwaukee | new yorkwww.versantsolutions.com