Your People ARE Your Employer Brand
Updated: May 29
Your reputation - whether good or bad - tells the world what to expect of you. This reputation is your Employer Brand, and it's more than just how or where you office or what you're selling. It is the backbone of your organization. It is your people.
Your Employer Brand is living in the minds and hearts of your employees. The way that you're remembered by the employees who worked with you in the past, viewed by the employees who work for you now, and the idea of what it's like to be an employee for you in the future, are the emotional and intellectual defining, human elements of your brand. This is the people's perception of you. Additionally, your chosen company values and created workplace culture are the social aspects of your employer brand. So, if your brand is defined by the people affiliated with your organization and the environment in which you create for them, doesn't it make sense that your focus should be on who you're hiring and how they're treated in order to sustain that reputation?
The best way to find individuals who will steadily steer your business forward is to make an impression about how and why your company is a great place to work. Not only talking-the-talk but walking-the-talk. I once worked for an employer who had a fairly developed concept of what it means to create company culture. They had the right motivating words, catchy hashtags, attention-grabbing marketing, and were ahead of the curve when it came to being on the forefront of promoting that culture. When it came down to being in the midst of it though, it seemed as if you were either "in" or you were "out". If you were performing at the top, you were "in". If you made an impression on upper management, you were "in". If you were performing slightly less, you were "out". If you left the organization, you were "out". There seemed to be more focus on cliques and social reputation rather than overall comradery and a lasting, emotional connection that carried on through anyone who ever worked there. This model will cause you to lose good employees that could've been retained and to lose opportunities on top talent wanting to join your team.
Not only is hiring for your employer brand crucial to your business - it can cost you. In advertising, in time sifting through resumes, interviewing and screening, in training, loss of productivity between one employee gone and another gained, in motivating the remaining staff - in overall morale. The Society of Human Resources Management predicts the total cost of replacing a worker is between six and nine months of their salary. If your employer brand is suffering and you fill a position with haste simply to get it filled, you'll then likely find yourself back in this position of loss shortly thereafter, continuing to cost you. For your bottom line, according to LinkedIn, your employer brand can reduce turnover rates by 28% and cut your costs-per-hire by half. Additionally, 75% of active job seekers are likely to apply to a job if the employer actively manages it's employer brand, seeking out past and current employees for referrals and transparent recommendations. Whether you put effort behind it or not, you have a brand. So why not put the effort in to ensure it's one you can be proud of?
The employees you hire are the main factor in your business - sustaining a positive reputation, and the success that your business will continue to experience. The hiring process is not just about finding someone to fill a position. It's dedication to time and resources towards filling positions with individuals who are invested in the long-term success of your business, and who will perform because you are giving them countless reasons to by way of illustrating that you execute your values. Avoid hindering development by taking seriously the culture of your organization and the way that prioritizing your employees is demonstrated.