Feb 22

Make It Work: Employer Branding III – Be Perceived as Top Employer!

Stephan Polomski
Stephan Polomski is director human resources, coach and trainer

Let´s presume you have executed surveys. You now know what you are currently offering and what you should offer as top employer in the perception of your existing workforce. Let´s presume you have an action plan in your hand whose execution will close up the gap that still might keep you away from internally being a top employer.

What and how are you telling candidates, who you are and what they are going to experience apart from competitive remuneration, personal development and matching assignments? What will be your employer brand promise? A promise your internal staff, employees, and managers will confirm and represent making it authentic and credible?

On our way through the process of employer branding we now reach item 2. Please, take also a look upon related blogs at The Care Guys: Employer Branding II (28.1.2010); Employer Branding I (21.10.2009); Retaining the Talent of Our Future (6.10.2009); and Employer Branding during Recession (9.8.2009).

  1. Define an ideal employer brand
  2. Define a recruiting strategy
  3. Define a binding strategy
  4. Define a potential development program (as part of your remuneration model)
  5. Define a performance management
  6. Monitor corporate culture and engagement
  7. Train managers and coach leaders how to walk the talk

2. Define a recruiting strategy

It is not only the candidates whose identities and profiles are a matter of assessment – it is also you as employer who has to explain who you are. Of course, this is often a second or third priority after job descriptions and conditions are checked. They are hard facts of your employee value proposition. Once job and remuneration fit are done, both, candidates and employers will revise the cultural fit.

The cultural fit is according to me the most crucial one, because here no is negotiation is possible. Once the content aspect is clear on the logical level, candidates will direct focus on the relationship aspect, the emotional level. Here underlying needs are checked. And this is where it comes to matching identities or not matching ones. To put it more precisely: to resonating ones or not resonating ones. This is, where it comes to purpose and values and thus to attitude and its behavioral expression.

And this is, where high glossy print material and flash animated websites and cool social networking portals and great corporate and product brands – as very important attention triggers of your employment communication strategy – are not longer in focus to really convince candidates that they are in the process of choosing the right employer.

Here it comes to the lived behavior of those who conduct – as brand representatives – the interviews with your candidates: HR staff, leading staff and in some cases team members. They embody your employer brand; they are your living identity. Who are you if not your people?

Here, in close relation with your candidate, you promote or you do not promote the authenticity of underlying needs like trust, respect, pride, resonance, belonging or/and balance.

And reading these items, it becomes clear that we are back to the root cause, even when talking about a recruiting strategy, the root cause called: leadership. Employees role model their leaders. And this works via a mirroring neural network in our brains. No way out.

Now, talking about defining a recruiting strategy under the umbrella of an employer brand it is absolutely crucial that your one2one-marketing works. The direct and authentic contact between the candidate and your interviewer is – non-verbally – conveying the idea of your employer brand identity. And identity means lived values being basic motivators like trust, respect, pride, resonance, belonging or/and balance.

It must be sensible, that your staff in the interview situation meeting your candidate is not just a brand clone, but lives his own individual identity being free to interpret and to shape his way of understanding and embodying the employer and corporate identity.

It must be clear, that the corporate identity as basis for strategy is like a score interpreted by people who understand what they are doing and at the same time enriching the execution with their special and unique imprint without leaving alignment and focus of joint goals. And again: this is a matter of resonance, of emotional intelligence of your staff, of your leaders, and of yourself.

Whatever you do when designing a recruiting strategy, you need both, the branding and marketing competency and the expertise for organization and people development.

And it is something no advertising agency is able to deliver when coming up with recruitment communication strategies, unique selling or communication propositions, instrumental or media plans. No headhunter will convey the special resonance of your corporate culture and employer brand to candidates.

Because it is your corporate culture which really makes you different from all other employers in the world. Your culture is the key to unique positioning and selling proposition.

“Because it is your corporate culture which really makes you different from all other employers in the world. Your culture is the key to unique positioning and selling proposition.”

Of course, I know what is necessary for a good recruiting strategy – and you know, too: you need to have your HR-department organized, plan staffing, needs, requirements, legal frameworks; you set up an applicant management system and choose necessary and working instruments and channels or outsource the whole process of analyzing, sourcing, interviewing, deciding, integrating. But this…

…is not the point here, I want to focus on.

The pivot of the employer brand´s recruiting strategy is the direct contact of people – your people and your future people – there you attract or loose crucial talent.

Once you are in authentic contact, this is where you decide the recruiting match for your employer brand.

This entry was posted on Monday, February 22nd, 2010 at 07:36 and is filed under Human Resources, Leadership, Management, Marketing. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. Responses are currently closed, but you can trackback from your own site.

Print This Post
Email This Post
  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • MySpace
  • LinkedIn
  • del.icio.us
  • Digg
  • Google Bookmarks
  • Technorati
  • MisterWong

Leave a comment

Comments are closed.