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Employer Branding is something that we believe will become highlighted among brands in 2020. Without putting investment into your company’s perception to potential employees, it’ll make the hiring process tougher, and expensive.

Employer brand describes an employer’s reputation as a place to work. This is not a new concept, but awareness of employer branding among employers may be about less than 50%.

Hiring is tough, there are plenty of candidates, but very few that fit or have the exact skill you need. But maybe the problem is HR is not equipped with a Brand that they are confident in. Thus is not attractive to the right audience they want to talk to.

Salary, PTO, Sick Days, and other benefits are not enough to attract the candidates you are wanting for your jobs. These are “whats” and everyone can offer those. You have to move to a “why” as that is how candidates are judging you.

The Shift To Why

There is a shift in competitiveness for Brands in a job market that’s merging with a consumer one. Your Brand is competing for attention in employment as much as for the consumers attention. That kinda gives me chills, not in a good way, but it’s been happening since the early 2000’s.

As a Brand you want yours to be the most attractive and well known. But the focus is on the product, not as an employer.

This can lead to candidates wanting to work for you. But after they get there, how many stay long term?

Your Employer Branding must be unique. It has to be defined through message. That is your positioning, and work to attract the talent you want to grow your business.

Messaging Matters

Messaging is what people think about your Brand. Therefore, it matters what potential employees also think about your Brand.

Your website is the first place after that Indeed post that tells them about you.

Do not rely on Social Media to help alone. It can skew views of your culture that could be a toxic one. The message on your website includes: images, copy, and a well designed layout. This tells them whether or not you are attractive enough for them to invest their time into working there.

People have to really believe in the why before they feel they can commit. Remember that today’s candidates put their career first over company.

It’s not like my fathers generation that put company first because there was retirement and benefits to cash out on at 65. That’s the baby boomers generation by the way.

Not so for todays generation. They’re looking at why they should join, and commit their time and skills to you.

Who Should Control Your Employer Branding?

The message of your employer branding comes from leadership. That’s typically the CEO, or HR, but can be your companies brand agency (hint… hint).

You want to create a culture that builds up employee advocacy. Much like you want your product to create and build up brand ambassadors.

Word of mouth will get you better candidates than an employer website careers page or job post.

Career Pages On Your Website

Speaking about careers pages.

This is overlooked on many websites today. It is prime real estate to show off your employer branding. I hated going to Indeed and applying for a job with my skills and resume detailing my entire job history. Only later to be required to take a “quiz” before a phone interview.

Employer Branding

Quizzes, Questions, and Assessments oh my.

Think about this for a minute. How impersonal, and dispassionate of an impression that can create about you as an employer.

Don’t believe me? Read what the audience at Reddit have to say about it, wow.

Potential employees want to be respected as the authority you hired them to be. These things make them feel like they are wasting their time in a sea of possibilities better spent else where.

They also want to work at a place where they can make friends, feel safe, and have camaraderie with their co-workers. After all they will be spending all their time there.

That judgement begins at the interview experience. If you are not nice, then that will get around, therefore no one will apply to your business.

Interviews Are Personal

I hope this can help, “interviews are personal to find the right personnel.”

There’s nothing more impersonal when applying for a job, and no one wants to face-to-face with you.

Inter – means between, mutually, reciprocally, together — not one-sided.

Ask The Headhunter

Imagine if I were to not let you pitch why your product is better, only to ask before you pitched it, to take a quiz about something that is in your industry. Then if I feel you did pass satisfactory enough to my preference, we can discuss it.

No one would do this, and candidates are frustrated by the results as much as the employer.

I care personally about the person and what they want out of the job, more than the quiz scores on Indeed or a phone interview. For me, I can’t read a persons body language when I ask questions over the phone. So let’s grab a coffee, come by the office, or face time if you’re remote.

60% of job seekers quit filling out online applications.

So imagine how many stop after being prompted for a quiz?

Terrible questions

This can put off someone wanting to continue the application process during the interview.

A few years ago, I once watched a persons back go rigid in an interview because of the questions asked, and was offended. It was not my interview by the way that I was conducting or in.

It’s ok to expect them to read about your company online. However, you have to read up on them. With social media, personal websites, references, and other sources, you should have an idea before you decide to have this person interviewed.

More About The Application Experience

This is as important as User Experience with your Brand. Remember 60% of job seekers quit filling out online applications.

“Good candidates know their time is important and they have plenty of opportunities in the job market. Their tolerance for jumping through hoops is much lower than many employers think.”

Sarah Gregory, director of research at Punchkick Interactive

This consideration leads to a good interview experience that the candidate, whether you hired them or not, will share it. You can see many examples on Indeed company pages. Click the “reviews” tab.

I’m not linking any here, because of reasons you’ll see for yourself.

When working on your employer branding make sure you are following your Indeed (or where ever you post jobs) reviews tab for your company.

Reasons candidates leave reviews are many. There are those because they had a really good or really bad experience. Others received offers, and junior candidates are more likely to give reviews.

Real World Case Study

So I’ve been conducting a case study among employers online. Data is something I love to collect and interpret for customers to serve the best experience possible to their consumers.

So I applied at 50 places for a job. Less than 10% were responsive. More interesting was that less than 5% of those, that’s just 2, presented themselves well enough to peak my interest as a legitimate place I would work at and feel secure.

When you are hungry you will eat anything, when you have a plate and options, it’s up to the employer to win the candidate not the other way around.

I found that almost all of them did not understand the job they were advertising for placement. This was frustrating, because as a candidate I was not applying for a job but educating them on what the job actually is. I hope I helped, but I can tell a lot of copy paste is still happening.

Of the ones I did talk to, it was smooth, and we were able to find out what we both brought to the table rather the bullet points that were on the ad.

Don’t copy and paste, talk to NerdBrand about your employer branding about getting the message in front of the right candidates.

We are not an HR firm, but can help you shape your brands message for attracting applicants and define the experience you want them to have with your brand.

If you liked this article, please leave a comment below and we’ll read it on our podcast! Or just share it. Also you can read here on why you need a brand guide for your branding.

Jason Davis

Author Jason Davis

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