Strong Employer Brand Key to Recruitment Process and Attracting Millennial Workers

This is an excerpt from “Launching a Successful employer Brand: Building on the Practices of top employer brands” by Hudson RPO and HRO Today magazine. To download the full report, visit http://EmployerBrandGuide.com.

Millennials — also known as “Gen Y” and born roughly between the early 1980s and the early 2000s — are not only different from those who have gone before them, but their differences are many compared to the soon-to-retire Baby Boomer generation. In fact, statistics show that Millennials already form 25 percent of the workforce in the United States. By 2020, Millennials will form 50 percent of the global workforce. As such, recruiting the best of these Millennial workers will be critical to the future of any business.

The unique characteristics of Millennials demand a different strategic approach to the recruitment process. First, companies need to do a better job of understanding what’s important to potential hires. Candidates today, especially Millennials, want to understand the totality of a role — what their experience will be at an organization and what it has to offer them. That’s why documenting and communicating a strong corporate brand is so important, according to a Hudson RPO/HRO Today magazine survey of 324 HR executives on their corporate branding practices.

A corporate brand is much more than an explanation of the company’s strategy, markets and products — it’s an expression of an organization’s corporate culture and work environment. It defines the organization’s value to potential hires and informs them about what it is like to work there. It’s not enough anymore to have a good consumer brand. Companies need to specify why a candidate would want to join their organizations, and building their reputations as employers is an important place to start. In fact, according to a recent LinkedIn study, “The State of Employer Branding,” 83 percent of global recruiting leaders agree it’s a critical driver of their ability to hire top talent.

With the growth of technologies such as social media and text messaging, how Millennials communicate is vastly different from previous generations. Now, candidates give more weight to employee reviews on websites such as Glassdoor in forming an opinion about companies. As such, there cannot be a disconnect between how you present the company to the outside world, how your employees view the company and what it is actually like to work there.

Clearly, while a strong employer brand can help with recruitment, the brand must reflect the reality experienced by current employees. Bridging the image-reality gap is a key challenge for many organizations that struggle to meet their brand promise. The Hudson RPO/HRO Today magazine study stresses that an employer brand must be closely tied to a company’s Employee Value Proposition or EVP.

An EVP is defined as the rewards and benefits employees receive in exchange for their performance. It is critical to workplace culture, career management and retention. According to the Hudson RPO/HRO Today survey, nearly half of the top brand companies stated that they have a defined EVP (versus just 20 percent for other brands).

A truly authentic EVP requires the input of employees across departments, geographies and seniority levels. The goal is to acquire a more honest, well-rounded view of the employer brand. Documenting employee impressions guides a richer, more authentic Employer Value Proposition. Plus, demonstrating to employees that their voices are valued and heard is a key part of the employer branding process. Employees, especially Millennials, will feel a strong sense of employer brand ownership and will be more likely to promote the brand to their wider community via social media.

As noted, positive word-of-mouth from employees in an organization means a lot to Millennial candidates. In fact, organizations with top employer brands actively engage their employees in promoting the brand — 75.7 percent for top employer brand companies versus 51 percent among other brands, according to the Hudson RPO/HPO Today study.

To discuss your employer branding strategy today, contact a Hudson RPO representative and download the complete employer branding strategy report.

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