Competition for talent within the tech sector has always been intense. But the difference between a company attracting the best people and one that may sometimes struggle tends to come down to one thing: the hiring organisation’s ‘employer brand’. But what exactly is an employer brand, why does it matter, and how can companies develop theirs?
What is an employer brand?
Simply put, an employer brand is the perception people have of what it might be like to work for an organisation. It provides a window into its culture, people, values, and opportunities for personal growth and professional progression – all of which have been shown time and again to be the key drivers both of talent attraction and retention.
When considering your ‘employer brand’, candidates are looking for indications of how they might be treated as an employee – for how their expectations might be met:
- Does the organisation have a good reputation?
- Is it well-respected in the industry?
- What is it that makes people want to stay there (and conversely why would they leave)?
- Would working there boost my personal brand and enhance my CV?
How does a good employer brand give organisations an edge in the talent market?
Despite the pandemic, investment in the European tech sector for the calendar year hit record levels, achieving a staggering $41bn – Sweden’s Klarna ($650m), UK’s Revolut ($580m), and Germany’s Auto1 Group ($300m) among the biggest recipients. And where there is growth demand for talent quickly follows.
This is where having a strong employer brand is critical to the future success of the business. It gives employers an edge over their competition. After all, as recruiters serving the tech sector on a pan-European basis, our job is to try and ‘disrupt’ the people our clients want and need to attract to their organisations. These people may already be happy in their current roles and so it takes more than simply a ‘good’ opportunity to attract their interest.
How can employers enhance their employer brand?
Like many things in life, there is no silver bullet that will magic a great employer brand. It takes time to develop and as it evolves the benefits to organisations can be immense.
The essence of an employer brand comes from how an organisation thinks of its employees. It is embedded in how it treats them and the culture it creates to make those employees successful.
The key is to focus on the things that matter most, to be consistent across all marketing channels regardless of whether you have a wealth of resources at your disposal or very little. Each touchpoint needs to reinforce what the organisation wants people to think of them – the way in which they are perceived. It’s akin to technology – to drive growth and remain competitive, organisations must stay relevant and invest where there is a need.
But it needs to be true and authentic, too. In other words, the promise communicated by the organisation is all of its recruitment marketing and advertising must match the experience the candidate has at every touchpoint from their first interaction with a candidate, right through the client’s recruitment process to on-boarding new members of staff and working in the organisation.