Any company that cares about recruiting and retaining top talent should constantly evaluate its hiring strategy.

Several facets of interviewing, onboarding and managing staff demand your attention as an employer — many of which require significant time and specialist knowledge to conduct effectively. Most hiring managers focus on the details of effective CV screening and refining job adverts to improve their chances of targeting and enticing suitable candidates.

But have you considered that the success or failure of your recruitment objectives could rest on how effectively you portray an attractive business brand?

Company branding can be a seemingly elusive business marketing concept, but the on-paper results are tangible indeed. As a result, 72% of recruiting leaders worldwide agree that employer brand significantly impacts hiring.

So, what exactly is business branding, why is it important — and how can it help your organisation stand out from the crowd? 

Defining company brands

In simple terms, business branding is a way of identifying your business. It encapsulates what sets it apart, what makes its offering different and, perhaps most importantly, reflects the company’s values.

Employer branding is about promoting your business as a desirable workplace. A company develops a positive (or negative) impression of its brand through the quality and competitiveness of its salary and benefits, management style, culture and commitments. These attributes create an overall picture of what it is like to work for your business. As such, branding and recruitment go hand in hand — particularly in the digital world, where so much business and hiring activity happens online.

Organisations around the world are working on nailing their branding — but why? What benefits are employees looking for, and why is it vital to get it right?

A growing number of businesses are incorporating branding into their strategy for one crucial reason: it generates cost savings. According to LinkedIn, companies with positive employer brands or favourable reputations within the market can get up to 50% more applications than companies with negative brands. And that is not all; successful employer branding has multiple proven benefits for hiring businesses, including:

Conversely, companies that fail to focus on branding stand to lose out significantly — financially and reputationally. One study revealed that 82% of prospective employees consider brand and reputation before applying for a job, which could prove disastrous for business growth and bottom lines in organisations that fail to meet expectations. So, can you afford to fall short of the mark in the current recruitment landscape?

Building your business’ brand

A strong employer brand is crucial for securing skilled, engaged and leadership-bound workers.

When done well, a branding strategy can deliver multiple functions simultaneously — from defining products and services to showcasing a unique approach to company culture. Consistent, first-rate employer branding should speak for itself, helping to communicate all a candidate needs to know through every interaction with your company.

Though defining and developing your business brand is a long-term commitment, there are a few key areas you can focus on to improve how your business appears to prospective candidates…

Develop your employer value proposition

Branding works alongside employer value propositions (EVPs): an employer’s marketing message and promise to its employees regarding its core values.

Every company’s EVP is different. It is the sum of everything you offer as an employer — an employee-centric approach that tells the story of your business and why someone should consider joining your team.

An EVP can be conveyed through consistent corporate messaging and recruitment marketing that helps communicate key messages to the employees you are trying to reach. However, talking a good game is great, but you must also walk the walk to ensure your branding comes across as genuine and succeeds in its goals.

Curate your online reputation

One of the trickiest parts of navigating the job hunt for candidates is working out which companies they would enjoy working for. So, ensuring your business’ reputation reflects well across the board is crucial — from online reviews and staff testimonials to official accreditations.

Many employers throw out attractive perks and salary offers, but a growing number of workers look for something more. According to research by CareerBuilder, 83% of candidates are willing to accept a lower salary from an employer with an excellent reputation. So, building and maintaining your brand as a business can lead to lower salary responsibilities and attract more interest from serious job seekers.

In today’s world, social media plays a starring role in business branding, with many candidates basing their employment decisions on the quality of a company’s online presence. Monitoring and updating social media pages and websites is critical to ensuring your business puts its best foot forward in the competitive job landscape.

Refine your onboarding processes

Candidates often gain their first impression of your business brand during recruitment. As a result, every onboarding stage should be carefully considered to ensure talent is not dissuaded from pursuing an opportunity within your company.

For employers, this means issuing timely, thorough feedback, remaining organised and staying up to date with the latest trends — from virtual recruitment and remote working to HR management.

Of course, this can quickly become an overwhelming task — especially in the current candidate-driven market. So, experts recommend enlisting the support of a specialist recruitment agency to support a successful business branding strategy.

Do you need expert advice on your recruitment strategy? Howett Thorpe offers tailored recruitment services for clients in the finance, accounting and business support sectors. Contact our team at 01252 718777 or email farnham@project1-pmhbkw6eig.live-website.com to discuss your hiring goals!