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Six steps to successful employer branding

Generational shifts in the workplace. The pandemic. The great resignation. Changing expectations. Modern lifestyles. Low unemployment. These are just a handful of the many factors impacting each and every brand’s most important asset: their people. 

The competitive and changing employment landscape adds new layers of complexity to the typical ways of doing business. Notably, it has extended branding well beyond effectively promoting yourself to your end user. Today’s most effective organizations additionally have employee-centered branding that focuses on the critically important task of recruiting and retaining employees.  

Here are six steps to developing employer branding that will position your organization as a great place to work… 


  1. Identify who you are
    You’ve likely created value proposition that guides communication to your target consumer audience. To attract and retain the talent needed to achieve your objectives, it’s equally important to craft an employer value prop that encapsulates what your business offers to and expects from employees. Examine your mission, vision, core values, culture, differentiators, and benefits, and determine how these attributes showcase what your unique brand has to offer.

  2. Get employee input
    Effective employer branding is not delivered to the masses from on high. Ideally, this is an authentic, collaborative endeavor. Solicit feedback from current employees on workplace culture, employer values, and what they like about their job. Find out what current employees truly want from you. Identify your top performers and dig in to determine the attributes that make them such an asset to your brand.

  3. … and external feedback
    It can be hard to see things accurately when you’re in the weeds. And, it’s good to know what you’re up against in terms of competition and expectation. It helps to gain perspective from those on the outside looking in. Online research, reputation monitoring, and surveys  go a long way toward giving you a 360-degree view.  Job search platforms such as Indeed and Glassdoor are great places to start your online research. You can review competitor job listings, employee reviews, and company pages to identify what they’re doing well and where you can differentiate yourself, as well as read employee reviews on both platforms to understand how current and former employees view your company and its culture. Look for common themes and areas for improvement, and use this feedback to make positive changes.

  4. Align internal and external brands
    Once you’ve input pulled the pieces of your brand’s unique attributes together, compare them to the feedback you’ve gained. Ideally, you’ll notice a lot of overlap. Your employee branding should dovetail your outward-facing efforts, not compete or be at odds. Is your brand active? Calm? Trendy? Traditional? Playful? Serious? What your brand is working to portray to the world should be reflected in the internal approach and culture. Creating alignment among human resources, marketing, management, and everyone else results in a stronger overall brand.

  5. Develop and deploy
    Once you’ve identified what defines your organization and created the words that communicate it clearly, use that employee value proposition (EVP) to develop your employee marketing strategy. Your value prop helps pinpoint your target applicant base and clarifies where and how to reach them. And it provides insight as to how to engage and retain your existing employees. Plugging these into your plan will strategically move you toward your goals.

  6. Live up to your word… and get the team on board!
    Once your employer branding is in place, consider it regularly! Your employee value prop and marketing strategy should be revisited often and infused into every possible recruitment effort and aspect of your workplace. If your brand is fun, how does your workplace reflect that? If you’re peddling flexibility to consumers, are you offering that same courtesy to your employees? The more aligned your employees’ experience feels to your external brand and the more cohesively your team members will serve as natural ambassadors (which you can, of course, encourage via engagement campaigns.)

Developing an employee brand strategy is an effective way to build your brand toward success from the inside out. Need a hand getting started on yours? We’d love to help you work smarter by digging into your business to build an employee value proposition and brand strategy that will attract your ideal workforce.

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