Thursday, November 26, 2009

Employer Branding – New Fast Growing Discipline

Over the last 5 years the interest for Employer Branding has grown tremendously. The table shows numbers of hits on Google for “Employer Branding”*. Today you will find millions of hits!

*Ref Universum Group,

Friday, November 20, 2009

Employer Branding recognized by a growing number of companies

I have seen that the term ‘employer branding’ has been used in different degrees in different countries. But regardless of the terms used, the purpose of the activity is the same: to build a strong, attractive and true employer brand that will succeed in attracting and retaining key talent.

What I find interesting, is that the concept of employer branding is being recognized by a rapidly growing number of leading companies as part of their main strategic challenges, and is therefore the new fast growing discipline.

In other words, if you do not work with employer branding it will cost you money. You will find it increasingly difficult to attract and retain key talent. When everyone else is getting more professional and committed to employer branding, the competition will increase.

The Employer Branding work should be conducted in five steps:

Step 1: Research
This is the starting point in any employer branding campaign. By undertaking research you gain information on how your brand is perceived internally and externally.

Step 2: Employer Value Proposition (EVP)
Employer value proposition consists of a set of associations and offerings that characterize an employer and differentiates it from competitors. In this step it is time to analyze the gaps between the internally and externally perception discovered during step 1.

Step 3: Communication Plan
Now it’s time to select the appropriate channels for the target groups, and to coordinate the employer branding communication with other corporate communication. Remember, a sustainable Employer Brand is created when HR and Communication work together.

Step 4: Communication Material
After the communication plan has been finalized, it is time to define the materials, i.e. the pictures, words, movies and other specifics to be used, based on your EVP.

Step 5: Action
The final step consists of implementing, measuring and adjusting activities from all the stages above on a regular basis. Especially is a yearly measuring important.

In my next blogs I will talk more in depth for each step – a series of five blogs :). Enjoy and

Saturday, November 14, 2009

Employer Branding is not easy

Working with Employer Branding sounds easy, but when companies start working with it they realize that it involves a rather complex set of activities.

Universum has conducted a global survey among 875 HR professionals that have been working with Employer Branding for some years (November 2008).

Some key findings:

  • Access to resources is the main challenge for both the short and long term, indicating difficulties in showing the value of investments in Employer Branding
  • Less than half the respondents are comfortable with their evaluation metrics
  • Wide spread involvement throughout the organization is critical for success
  • The employers strongly believe that communication should be centered around intangibles such as "culture" and "image".

However, "Universum Student Surveys" shows that students consider tangibles such as "job characteristics" and "remuneration" more important than "culture" and "image". Analyzing and understanding research before starting the Employer Branding work is therefore critical.

The good news is that the survey shows that communication departments and HR have started to talk to each other, and that's a good start for a sustainable work within Employer Branding. As much as 49% of the companies said that communication department is involved in the Employer Branding work, and 59% said that top management is involved.

I am therefore looking forward to some exiting coming years in the field of Employer Branding!