Last week, ADP launched an Employer Brand that consciously connects with both customers and candidates. ‘A more human resource’ is a platform designed to attract both new clients and new talent, breaking with the ‘payroll’ perception of what has long been a sophisticated human capital company. This strategy is seeing the light of day just as several new employer-branding reports, by Futurestep, Universum, BLR and Brandemix, show where ‘the people brand’ is today – and where it’s headed. And the near-future looks very interesting indeed.
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Most encouragingly, 59% of respondents to the Brandemix survey confirmed that they ‘had’ a clearly articulated EVP. Even more positively, 60% of CEO’s in the Universum survey said they “owned” their employer brand. And it’s now clear that organisations are using an employer brand to address a large number of challenges. The top goals in the Universum report were “Filling positions in the short and long terms”, followed by “Improving retention” and “Differentiating ourselves from the competition.” While 69% of BLR’s respondents said that filling job openings was the main objective, 41% said it was also to “raise the company’s profile among consumers.” BLR also discussed what it called “internal branding,” aimed at employees instead of job-seekers (a distinction most companies don’t make) – with goals aimed at raising employee engagement (66%) and increasing retention (58%).
Strong employer brands do more than simply fill jobs, of course. They speak not just to job-seekers but also to current employees and even consumers. They set the company apart from its competitors, increase worker engagement and improve retention. Futurestep’s survey found that the qualities that provided the best competitive advantage were organisational culture (63%) and employer brand (26%).
And the Reports also go a long way to answering the old question of “Do Employer Brands Work?” The surveys show that they certainly ‘work’ better than not having an employer brand, allowing your competitors better position themselves, and enabling their employer brands to de-position your own.
In BLR’s survey, 48% of respondents said their employer brand was either “very” or “somewhat” successful in boosting employee morale. 80% of larger companies and an amazing 91% of smaller companies in the Brandemix survey said their employer brand was successful. And this certainly reaffirms the recent LinkedIn report which showed that companies with a strong employer brand have a turnover rate 28% lower than companies with a weak or non-existent one. Little wonder that the Brandemix survey found that 22% of respondents who didn’t have a formal employer brand intended to create one within the next year.
As the recovery continues and the talent market becomes even more competitive, it’s clear that ‘The Employer Brand’ is taking on an ever-more important role for most organisations.
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