The world is becoming a much more unpredictable place as a result of: pandemics, financial crashes and instability, increasing geopolitical instability, social and technological changes/revolutions, increasing economic and national protectionism, ageing population and multi-generational workplace…and the list goes on.
This volatility is now impacting workers, and as a result subtle and sometimes major shifts in candidate and worker expectation are occurring – most particularly this year. And, employers must ensure to assess, and if necessary, recalibrate their brand message on a yearly basis if they are to maximise their attractiveness to the market place and avoid being seen as stagnant, irrelevant, out of touch and ultimately undesirable. Your employer brand messages need to be relevant and up to date to engage with top talent, and below I have outlined five irresistible brand messages for 2021.
1. Employer Value Proposition (EVP). Some things never change. The EVP has always been and still remains the hallmark of an irresistible brand message, according to the Employer Branding Global Trends Study Report, with ‘Defining EVPs’ still considered to be the most effective employer branding initiative. So, spend plenty of time trying to establish and communicate the key qualities that make you different, and stand out from the crowd.
2. Honesty. Many employees remain emotionally scarred as a result of the broken promises and the lack of communication that can occur during the often necessary restructuring that will occur coming out of this global pandemic. Trust has, therefore, been eroded and it is unsurprising that the Employer Branding Survey from Randstad shows that 78 percent of workers value honesty in employers above all else. Does your employee brand messaging espouse honesty?
3. Reliable and Secure. As a result of an expected period of job insecurity and market instability that goes hand-in-hand with the recovery, it should not come as a surprise to you that 71 percent of employees prioritize reliability and security in their potential employers. Do your employer brand messages espouse reliability and security?
4. Authenticity. A major problem with many employer brand messages is that they are just that, messages, and the employer fails to follow through with this in reality. Your employer brand needs to be authentic (particularly in this climate of all round mistrust), and candidates must believe that your firm does what it says on the tin by showing concrete examples and statistics of employee living and breathing your brand values – otherwise workers may not believe your brand message, devaluing your brand.
5. Your business is a great place for talent to invest themselves. Some things never change. Back in 2018, Employer Brand International showed that skill development, fair pay, and interesting work encouraged employees to stay. Today, The Employer Branding Global Trends Study (mentioned above) reports similar findings, with career development being the top priority. However, studies show that in the post-COVID climate, employees will become less defensive, the emphasis is shifting from job security and employees are keen to start pushing for competitive pay again. Does your brand message convincingly demonstrate what a great investment your firm is and that employees will be able to grow and progress?
These are my five irresistible employer brand messages for 2021, which I believe employers need to be espousing in order to connect with the modern talent pool in this new world we are experiencing.
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