Insights for HR Professionals

Benefits to attract, engage and retain top talent.

Stand Out from the Crowd: How HR Brand Impacts Recruitment

Posted by Mollie Lombardi on 18 Jul 2017

How A Customized HR Brand Impacts Recruitment

The following post is the first in a guest-authored, three-part series exploring how to leverage benefits programs to attract, retain and engage top talent.

Branding is everywhere today. Celebrities, individuals, groups, companies are all talking about their brand, and its power to capture people’s attention. For employers, it’s no different. In an environment of key skill shortages and fierce competition for top talent, your employer brand needs to be clear, compelling, and differentiated.

This may be one reason that over 70% of organizations surveyed by Aptitude Research Partners for its Recruitment Marketing Index Report said they were planning to invest in solutions with recruitment marketing capabilities in the next 12 months. As they would with consumer brands, people want to align their life with a brand that is meaningful to them.

The modern recruiter has become a modern marketer, nurturing prospects and helping them to see the compelling differentiators of working for their company.  And like modern marketers, they need content to feed that process and ultimately help the business land that perfect candidate. In this battle for attention, organizations are looking to stand out in any way they can.

In Aptitude’s soon-to-be published 2017 Hire, Engage, Retain study, the top two talent acquisition priorities for the coming year are a focus on the candidate experience, and the need to offer more compelling and competitive compensation and benefits packages. This means not only making candidates aware of the compensation and benefits you offer, but helping potential hires understand how the organizational culture supports employees in utilizing those benefits.

So how can your organization leverage the full breadth of its employee experience into a brand that helps them hire, engage, and retain the best?

  1. Know who you need.
    With five generations in the workforce, employees are facing myriad needs when it comes to the benefits that are important to them. People are balancing their own unique mix of healthcare needs, time to attend to other obligations, children, aging parents, access to housing…the list goes on. Gaining a deeper understanding of the needs of the talent specifically required by your organization can also help employers create offerings that best fit the needs of their potential recruits.

  2. Help managers live the brand.
    With the transparency brought about by social media, it’s not enough to simply offer benefits. If your organization doesn’t live these benefits, candidates and potential applicants will find out. You may offer gym memberships or yoga classes, but if leadership rolls their eyes every time someone tries to hit the gym during lunch, the benefit on paper doesn’t matter.

  3. Make it part of your language.
    It’s important that recruiters, hiring managers, and everyone who touches candidates communicate your brand. All of its elements, including benefits, need to be part of the language used to talk about the organization and the job opportunity. Hearing about these important issues from potential peers is far more compelling than a brochure from HR.

When competing for talent, your ability to live your employer brand and communicate about it effectively may be the deciding vote for a strong candidate in your organization’s favor.

Mollie Lombardi is Co-founder and CEO of Aptitude Research Partners, a research-based analyst and advisory firm that helps businesses navigate all aspects of the Human Capital Management Technology Landscape, including talent acquisition, retention and engagement, and workforce management.  Aptitude enables organizations to better understand how these aspects work individually - and together - to deliver optimal employee experience and engagement, as well as business results.

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