Where your Employer Brand Might
be Going Wrong

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Having been in the recruitment industry for nearly a quarter century and primarily serving in a research capacity throughout, it never ceases to amaze me how absent research often is, especially when it comes to developing and maintaining an employer brand. Considering how valuable your company’s employer brand is, and how it serves as the very core of any and all recruitment and retention messaging, it absolutely, positively needs to be spot on. It needs to be accurate. It needs to be genuine. 

 It needs to be something that is widely agreed upon internally while at the same time attracting the right kind of people externally. 

But…is it? How do you know? What measures have been taken to instill confidence that your employer brand is what it needs to be and does indeed “check all the boxes”? I’ve often said that research should serve as the welcome mat in front of any door that involves decision-making, but when it comes to developing an employer brand I find too often it was never considered in the first placeor applied hastily, typically for the sake of appearance more than anything else. The former is obviously a scenario where the resulting employer brand is probably well below “ironclad” whereas the latter, while better than nothing, may not hold up to scrutiny. 

In either casethere’s a decent chance your employer brand is actually working
against you.
 

At Shaker we believe that retention begins on day one. So, what if your employer brand is blasting a not-entirely-accurate message from the mountaintops? What if it is attracting droves of “Persona A” when, in reality, it’s “Persona B” that thrives in your environment? You need only look at what went into the development of your employer brand to see how stable a foundation it is resting on. For example, I’ve encountered many a company that developed their employer brand based on long-held beliefs among leadership. “Here at Company X, we are all about Y…but after some actual research is done – lo and behold – the majority of top performers hear it all the time but would strongly argue it’s really all about Z.  From strictly a retention standpoint, what does that tell you? People are joining the ranks, thinking the company is about when it’s really about Z. Immediately they are realizing this is not what they signed up for. If that’s the case, right out of the gates you will have new hires who have to adjust their expectations to get with the program, or leave to find what they are really looking forAnd whose fault would that be? The employer brand and all the messaging that stemmed from itAnd that’s just one example! Now, pile more scenarios on that same premise and watch the problem expand throughout the entirety of the company. 

Fortunately, the good news is that there is a great resolution to this problem in the form
of research.  
 

 

I could write a book on the benefits of internal vs. external and quantitative vs. qualitativebut suffice to say, whatever methodology best suits the situation, research can be – and often is – the silver bullet when it comes to insuring your employer brand is authentic and accurate. This will allow you to stand apart from your competitors and attract the right kind of talent that will be successful at your company, and want to stay. 

If you’re curious to learn more about how we can improve and refine your employer brand, we’d love to hear from you 

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John Rosean

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