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INTRODUCTION                                             an employment brand in the context of your true                  ...
respondents said they have         FIGURE 1budgeted dollars to work on             DOES EMPLOYMENT BRANDING PROVIDE A COMP...
“Serving the brand in the context of who you reallyCREATING A                                               are is extreme...
help to reinforce external positioning, create a                FIGURE 3: Employment Brand Promise Aligned to and EVP —   ...
way. When conducting a website assessment, consider       company) might cost $2,500 — $5,000. Producingif you would be at...
Based on the Human Capital Institute webcast, Employer Branding: Using It to Increase Employee Loyalty, April 2, 2008.PRES...
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Using employer branding_to_increase_loyalty


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Using employer branding_to_increase_loyalty

  2. 2. INTRODUCTION an employment brand in the context of your true organizational culture will make it a much moreEmployer Branding campaigns that catch headlines authentic and congruent experience”, says Pellet.often have hot slogans to attract young talent, and People like authenticity, so that when they enter theemphasize a “cool” culture, but employer workplace, the employment brand that was sold tobranding goes much deeper than the ink on the them actually bears true after they step in the It should be built to last, and not only attractnew employees, but help retain the precious Defining your company culture increases your ROI byresources you already have in place. It’s about the drawing in the right employees and repelling thosepeople in your organization and creating the kind who are a mismatch. Many hiring managers dislikeof authentic relationship with your employees that using the word “repel”, but considering the cost ofspawns loyalty to propel your business forward in a one bad hire, “repelling” workers who don’t fit attough recruiting and retention environment. your organization can be very cost effective. The current war for top talent presents many challengesDuring an April 2, 2008 webcast with the Human for organizations, in a variety of industries. ThisCapital Institute, Lizz Pellet, CEO of EMERGE struggle to find the best fit is propelling manyInternational discussed how companies can utilize organizations to build a branding message that istheir employer brand to increase loyalty and return congruent with their organizational culture.on investment. This paper will reveal results of some Companies are feeling increased pressure to producerecent studies on employer branding, discuss the more with less, manage cultural integrations duringconnection between company culture and brand, mergers, manage the Baby Boomer exodus, andhow to create an authentic employer value attract and retain Gen Y workers and knowledgeproposition, and outline the costs involved with workers. These challenges can be dissipated bybranding campaign, as well as how to justify the clearly defining your company culture andspend to company leaders. automatically drawing in the right talent. Your employment brand might be your best recruitment tool.THE CONNECTIONBETWEEN EMPLOYMENTCULTURE ANDCOMPANY BRAND BRANDING STUDIESWHY ATTRACT, RETAIN, REPEL? EMERGE International surveyed director-levelWhen companies take the time to understand and marketing, recruitment and HR professionals at 100clearly communicate their culture, they have the companies regarding their views of employmentability to attract and retain the right employees, and branding; the results were somewhat surprising.repel the ones that just won’t fit. Some companiestry to replicate their consumer brand when creating “They know employment branding is important,an employer brand, while the two are aligned, they they say it affects and gives them a competitiveare not the same. The employer brand is a statement edge in recruiting, they know it helps retain andabout what your company represents, the types of attract top talent, and yet it’s not a strategicpeople you want on your team and the kind of work initiative and they don’t have budgeted dollars foratmosphere you provide, while your consumer brand it”, says Pellet (see Figure 1).speaks primarily to your customers. Pellet has foundthat when companies take the time to get crystal Eighty nine percent of respondents agreed thatclear about their culture, the employees that work employment branding provides a competitivethere enjoy an authentic and congruent work advantage in recruiting efforts and 85% agree thatexperience, they’ll stick around longer and they’ll employment branding is important. However, lessalso talk to others about their positive experiences than half said it was one of their five strategicworking for the company. “We find that creating initiatives for the upcoming year and only 36% of the 2 EMPLOYER BRANDING: USING IT TO INCREASE EMPLOYEE LOYALTY
  3. 3. respondents said they have FIGURE 1budgeted dollars to work on DOES EMPLOYMENT BRANDING PROVIDE A COMPETITIVE ADVANTAGE?their employment brand. Statement Agree Neutral DisagreeEighty-one percent also Employment branding efforts provides aagreed that a cultural 89% 9% 3% competitive edge in our recruiting efforts.assessment would help them Our company’s employment brand helps attractto understand the gaps in 67% 30% 4% top talent.their company culture and its Our comapny’s employement brand helps retainimpact to retention and 60% 33% 6% top talent.recruitment. Another datapoint of interest is that over IS IT IMPORTANT TO HAVE AN EMPLOYER BRAND?30% of the respondents Statement Agree Neutral Disagreeanswered Neutral (don’t know,not sure) to the fact that their Employment branding is important to my company. 85% 13% 3%employment brand helps them Employment branding is one of the top fiveattract and retain top talent. strategic initiatives for my company in the upcom- 49% 30% 22% ing year.On the flip side, the cost of We have budgeted dollars for 2007 to work on ournot attaching dollars to your 36% 19% 45% employment brand.employer branding efforts canbe very high. Emerge found Here are some alarming statistics on their use ofthat the average company was losing two hours of social networking sites:productivity per day with each disengaged worker.Based on an average hourly wage of $15 and a normal • MySpace, YouTube and pod casting are the newMonday through Friday work schedule, a company norms in communication between Gen Y’rswith 1,000 disengaged employees could lose $15,000 • There are 208+ million users on Myspace today —a day in productivity, or $7.2 million per year. This that’s as big as some countries and the numbersnumber emphasizes the impact that employee loyalty, climb every dayor lack thereof, can have on your company. • More candidates are utilizing Google to obtain information about companies before they apply or accept a job offer. There are 2.7 billionGENERATIONAL requests for information on Google every dayCHALLENGES Much to the surprise of some thought leaders, studies are showing that Gen Y workers can actually be veryTHE BOOMERS loyal, as long as they are engaged. They are lookingThe first Boomer retired on January 1st of this year for a “authentic and congruent” experience at theand according to the US Bureau of Labor, an workplace. If a Gen Y worker is in engaged andestimated 30,000 boomers are retiring each day included, they will perform well, they can bewithin the US. In 2010, we’re expected to feel the outstanding internal recruiters for your company, theyfull impact of this exodus. As a result, companies are will spread positive messages about the company, andusing their employment brand to specifically attract they will tend stay longer, hence be “retained”.and retain the Boomer generation.GEN YGen Y workers rely heavily on social networking.“You’re going to have to get out of your comfortzone to attract, retain and repel this population”,says Pellet to companies trying to tap Gen Y. 3 EMPLOYER BRANDING: USING IT TO INCREASE EMPLOYEE LOYALTY
  4. 4. “Serving the brand in the context of who you reallyCREATING A are is extremely, extremely important”, saysCONGRUENT AND Pellet. Your campaign should include advertising anyAUTHENTIC awards, or social responsibility causes (going green) relevant to your company on your career website.EMPLOYMENT HR should work closely with marketing to developBRAND the employment brand, since consumer brand and employment brand are closely tied. “This is notHow does a company create a congruent, authentic something that should be done in a Human Resourcesemployment brand? Leaders must create and sustain vacuum”, says Pellet.the company culture by communicating the vision,the mission and the values of the company. Then FIGURE 2they will easily draw in employees who are aligned RECOGNIZABLE CONSUMER BRANDSwith the value system. If the company has a“silent code of conduct” that is inconsistent with thestated culture, employees will sense that as well.Employees feel how they fit in. For example,employees with very high morals and values mightfind it difficult to work for a large organization thathas recently been involved in a public scandal. Thistype of disconnect between value systems affectsemployees on a very deep, personal level and it isdifficult to overcome. The solution is to create anauthentic brand that accurately communicates the EMPLOYMENTcompany’s value system. BRAND ASSESSMENT“CULT-LIKE” CULTURES“Organizations with a cult-like culture have a very AND THE EVPstrong sense of who they are and who they are not”, Do you know how your company identity is currentlysays Pellet. Based on seven years of organizational perceived? Conducting a quantitative cultural andculture research, the 1999 book, Built to Last — employment brand assessment can help youSuccessful Habits of Visionary Companies, stated determine that. Deploy a metric that you can gothat companies with a “cult-like” culture actually back and measure against to help you track progresslast longer. Examples of these types of companies and ROI of new programs. Pellet suggests a reviewinclude Southwest Airlines, Starbucks and UPS. They these key areas:stand out by creating a very tight sense of belongingamongst their workers, they often have employee • The company’s current identityslogans, and they have easily recognizable brand • Leadership styleimages that evoke an emotional response • The types of relationships people have at thereminding us of their company culture (see Figure company2). After the Fortune 100 was announced in 2007 • How they communicatethey did a follow up piece on some of the • Company infrastructurecompanies featured. Once such interview was with • Employee engagementa Nike representative, when asked if he could talk • Financeabout the company culture he was quoted as saying“how many companies do you know that 30% of their THE EMPLOYMENT BRAND PROMISE (or EVP)employees have the company logo tattooed Creating an employment brand promise helps yousomewhere on their body.” That seems like quite a define and communicate your Employment Valuebranding statement. Proposition, which ultimately is your brand. Companies need to speak to the value system they have in place. The Employment Brand Promise will 4 EMPLOYER BRANDING: USING IT TO INCREASE EMPLOYEE LOYALTY
  5. 5. help to reinforce external positioning, create a FIGURE 3: Employment Brand Promise Aligned to and EVP — Employee Value Propositioncompetitive hiring advantage, communicate whatthe company stands for, create brand loyalty andcommunicate the Employment Value Proposition CONSUMERS AND SHAREHOLDERSto its employees (see Figure 3).It’s important to not only identify organizationalvalues, but to also define them in behavioral termswithin the company. For example, each employee EMPLOYEESmay define and exhibit “trust” in the workplacedifferently. Pellet recommends conducting avalues assessment to see if there is consistency andawareness of these cultural values and how they areplayed out in employee behavior and belief system.Positioning an Employee Value Proposition is reallyabout transferring what the company is going to“give” to what the employee is going to “get”.Figure 4 illustrates how a list of amenities such as onsite, basketball court, gameroom and athletic club can FIGURE 4:be repositioned to theemployee as “so that you can Example of positioning your EVP — Start each top line with “we offer”take a break and have fun atwork”. Another example islisting statements to createa more competitive salaryand promotionalopportunities “so that youcan grow with us and createthe career and experienceyou want”. Changing thesemeaningful visual for theemployee and creating anemotional response speaks tothe “wants” of theconsumer your employee.The recommended timeline for delivering an WEB SITE AND JOB BOARD ASSESSMENTEmployment Brand Promise is: Conducting a simple assessment of your current• 1 to 3 Months — Diagnostic, data collection, website and your presence on various job boards can analysis tell you a lot about where your company stacks up in• 3 to 6 Months — Establish Value Proposition, communicating your employer brand. Pellet uses the develop brand message, roll out initiatives “Three clicks and your out” rule. She says, “If a• 12 Months — Redeploy diagnostic to measure potential candidate can not find what they are progress and track ROI looking for within three clicks of getting to your• 1 to 3 Years — Full alignment, significantly website, the candidate may be gone and on to your better business results, increased ROI of competition”. Your website should clearly recruitment and retention programs communicate your company’s vision, mission and values as well as reflect your company culture in some 5 EMPLOYER BRANDING: USING IT TO INCREASE EMPLOYEE LOYALTY
  6. 6. way. When conducting a website assessment, consider company) might cost $2,500 — $5,000. Producingif you would be attracted to work there yourself. recruitment videos may cost $2,800 for a very basicPellet notes that many websites use stock photos of video using stock photos or can cost up to $22,000employees, and it can be much more effective to use for a live shoot lasting three minutes. Some newphotos of real employees who actually work there. companies are jumping into career video shootingAlso consider if you’re using the right domain name, because it is the hottest new thing, but Pelletor if there is another domain your company should suggests sticking with companies that have beenown to catch more jobs seekers in your target around a while and have a good reputation. Viewaudience. For example, adding “.jobs” to your their work and talk to other professionals beforedomain name will enable job seekers to find your signing website with fewer clicks, and you’ll hold theirattention longer.Your company should stand out on job boards. Health CONCLUSION “An employment brand isn’t necessarily just aCare is one example of organizations that are not marketing tool to get a Gen Y or a Boomer or an X-erdifferentiating themselves when they place ads for in the door, an employment brand is to express yournursing positions; they simply emphasize a caring employee value proposition”, says Pellet. You don’tenvironment and they miss the opportunity to truly have to try to create an employment brandstand out. A review of the most popular job boards message that speaks to four generations, but youwill help you assess how you’re competing with other should think about who your company is and whatemployers. According to Pellet, Careerbuilder and your company is offering as a value proposition.Monster are a bit passé, as local job boards are taking Creating an authentic brand and increasingover. She suggests looking at your niche market or employee loyalty starts by having an understandinglocal job boards, and reviewing recruitment job of what your culture really is and what it is not. Inboards that are stand outs, such as a complex recruiting and retention environment,You can easily find companies that will shoot video for employer branding can be a very effective tool toyou, like and, attract and retain the right people to your companycheck them out first as you begin to generate ideas and repel the ones that just don’t “fit”.for your own recruitment videos. Some of these newcareer video companies will actually come to yourworksite to shoot video for you. Above all, your careervideo must truly reflect who your company is so thatit will attract the right people to work for you.PUTTING DOLLARSBEHIND BRANDINGEFFORTSTo justify spending dollars on employer branding,consider the cost of replacing one executive in yourcompany. Pellet suggests to her clients that theytake the cost of one recent “bad” executive hire andmultiply it by three; the ending number couldeasily justify a budget that can be used to developyour brand. Conducting a brand assessment throughan Internet-based employee survey can cost between$2,500 and $18,000 depending on the number ofemployees, while a non-invasive scan of yourenvironment (i.e. job postings, job boards, a websitereview, or mystery employee report of your 6 EMPLOYER BRANDING: USING IT TO INCREASE EMPLOYEE LOYALTY
  7. 7. Based on the Human Capital Institute webcast, Employer Branding: Using It to Increase Employee Loyalty, April 2, 2008.PRESENTERLizz Pellet, CEOEMERGE InternationalFellow Johns Hopkins UniversityLizz Pellet is the author of Getting Your Shift Together: Making Sense of Organizational Culture and Change —Introducing Cultural Due Diligence. Lizz is a recognized national conference speaker and has presented over 40professional learning sessions in the past three years. EMERGE International is a California based consultancy firmdedicated to improving the ROI of organizational culture, employment branding and transformational change efforts. In1998, Lizz pioneered the development of the Cultural Health Indicator (CHI), a validated organizational culturediagnostic instrument. In 2007, she introduced the Brand Enhancer, a comprehensive solution that combines cultureand employment branding. Clients include Abbott Laboratories, Mayo Clinic, American Express, Phoenix’s Children’sHospital, Physicians Mutual Insurance, Yahoo! and many others.MODERATORChristine AbbatielloDirector, Talent Strategy CommunityHuman Capital InstituteChristine Abbatiello serves as the Director of the Talent Strategy Community at Human Capital Institute, bringing to theorganization nearly fifteen years of industry experience in human capital. She is committed to the concept of providingthe most in-depth research and knowledge content to this broad and diverse community. An honors graduate of ColbyCollege with a degree in English Literature, Christine was one of the original employees of Answerthink/The HackettGroup. In her five years there as the Director of Executive Recruitment, she helped grow the organization to over2000 associates and developed a full integrated talent management program. Additionally, she has worked in corporatestrategy, corporate and agency recruitment and industry consulting before joining HCI in 2008. Christine is committedto the concept of giving back to the community, and served as a volunteer employment transition advisor after the9/11 Terrorist Attacks and Hurricane Katrina.ACKNOWLEDGEMENTSThis White Paper is made possible by JWT Inside, sponsor of HCI’s Attracting, Qualifying, and Selecting Top Sales TalentLearning Track.ABOUT JWT INSIDEJWT INSIDE helps organizations advance employee engagement through comprehensive advertising, marketing andemployee communications services. Measurement tools, consulting resources and strategic approaches are employedto put the right people in the right jobs and keep the workforce engaged. The agency has 12 offices and 9 satellitelocations across North America and internationally. It is a subsidiary of JWT, the largest advertising agency in the UnitedStates and the third full-service network in the world. Its parent company is WPP (NASDAQ:WPPGY). for more information.ABOUT THE HUMAN CAPITAL INSTITUTEThe Human Capital Institute is a catalyst for innovative new thinking in talent acquisition, development anddeployment. Through research and collaboration, our programs collect original, creative ideas from a field of topexecutives and the brightest thought leaders in strategic HR and talent management. Those ideas are then transformedinto measurable, real-world strategies that help our members attract and retain the best talent, build a diverse,inclusive workplace, and leverage individual and team performance throughout the enterprise. 7 EMPLOYER BRANDING: USING IT TO INCREASE EMPLOYEE LOYALTY