Building a strong employer brand pays rich dividends while hiring top talent

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In today’s highly competitive IT job market, your company wants to attract and retain top talent. But what chance do you have when your competitors too are ready to bait the same talent you have been eyeing and often scoop them up before you can make your move? Not sure how to win the talent race? The answer lies in differentiating your company from the competition.

But how do you do this? By building a strong employer brand that resonates with your target IT professionals!

Today, just a fat packet doesn’t cut it anymore. Employees want a lot more than a good salary. And they consider several other factors before switching jobs, including your company culture, the perks and benefits on offer, flexibility, market reputation, and more. If you want to attract, hire, and retain premium talent, your employer branding should be spot on.

Employer Branding – What Is It?

Your employer brand refers to the image and reputation your company has as an employer. It encompasses everything from your business mission, vision, values, and company culture to work-life balance and employee benefits. To build a strong employer brand, you need to continually expose potential employees to employer-positive signals so they feel encouraged to work for you.

How to Build a Strong Employer Brand?

Here’s a 7-step plan that can help you to build a strong brand for your business in the IT job market.

1.      Define Your EVP

EVP or employer value proposition involves identifying and communicating what sets your company apart from the rest as an employer. You need to consider your company culture, mission, vision, value proposition, work environment, career development opportunities, and any unique aspects that make your company an attractive place to work.

2.      Define the Ideal Candidate Persona

Before you go all in with guns blazing, take time to ask who you are looking to hire. Is it software developers? Specialists in tech support and equipment maintenance? Those adept in hardware and networking? You need to define your ideal candidate persona first.

And once you have done it, you should ensure your EVP aligns with your target candidate persona so your company attracts the right candidates to interview and hire.

3.      Optimize Your Website and Career Page

You should audit your website to find if it’s aligned with your employer brand. Check the message it’s putting across and whether it has attractive texts and visuals. Additionally, examine if it offers a positive user experience and is mobile-friendly and search engine optimized.

If your website has a career page, set it up to match your employer brand and ensure it provides clear and concise information about the company culture, job opportunities, and the application process. Having a user-friendly application process and integrating an applicant tracking system for streamlining the hiring process are other effective ways that can support your employer branding efforts.

4.      Focus to Enhance Your Company’s Online Presence

Apart from your website, you should focus on setting up a robust online presence on social media channels. However, instead of spreading yourself thin and targeting multiple channels all at once, it pays to focus on a solitary one. For example, you can begin with LinkedIn if your primary goal is to connect with business leaders, network, and find top talent.

Once you have mastered it and made your presence felt on LinkedIn, you could move to other channels, which could be Twitter, Instagram, etc., based on where your ideal audience is. You should bring variety to your social media content while ensuring they align with your branding efforts. From showcasing what your company’s mission, vision, and values are to sharing employee benefits on offer, employee success stories, testimonials, and skills training and growth opportunities, you should do it all.

Sharing any industry awards or recognition the company has won and engaging with industry leaders, potential candidates, and your online community are other effective ways of building a strong employer brand. You could even organise meet-ups, seminars, and events, or run competitions and promotional activities to drum up some publicity for your brand. Starting a company blog, YouTube channel, or podcast are other ways worth considering to build your employer brand.

5.      Ensure Prompt and Proper Communication Across All Channels

Strategic and prompt communication plays a big role in helping you build a strong employer brand. It will help you to connect with people, such as business leaders, present and potential customers, prospective candidates to hire, and more.

If you have been looking for answers to “how to build a strong employer brand,” well-planned communication in the form of interactions and engagements with a diverse group of people is the key.

6.      Support DE&I

When you incorporate DE&I into the EVP, it sends a loud and clear message that your company values and prioritises diversity, equity, and inclusion. When building your brand, it pays to embrace DE&I, because with a diverse labour force in most companies that comprises four generations, namely Gen Z, Millennials, Gen X, and Baby Boomers, many potential employees prefer to know about your DE&I initiatives when deciding if they want to work for you as DE&I has emerged as a top criterion for candidates in the last three years.

Failing to support and highlight your DE&I efforts could mean losing out on top talent, which could be costly in today’s tough economic environment.

7.      Encourage and Facilitate Employee Advocacy

Engaged employees, who act as brand ambassadors, can help amplify your brand message and facilitate positive associations with your company. You can encourage your employees to tell their stories (one life in the day of a developer at company X, fun activities at X, etc.) of working at your company and even go on panels as a speaker or subject-matter expert or mentor to share their views on topics they are experienced in their field.

Training and encouraging your existing employees to update their online profiles to make them professional, current, and attention-worthy also pays rich dividends. That’s because 1 in 4 candidates view other employee profiles right after finding out about a job opportunity in your company. You may even start incentives for employees to refer ideal candidates for vacant positions, who get hired and stay for at least 6 months to a year.

Remember – any time your existing or former star employees bring positive attention to your employer brand, you are scoring big by getting noticed by the IT industry’s top talent that you seek to bring on board.

Final Words

In today’s highly competitive IT landscape, hiring and retaining the best employees has become pretty expensive and challenging. You need leadership-bound, talented workers to drive your business forward. Not sure how to find them?

The best way is to create the impression that your company is a great place to work. And to do this, you need to build a strong employer brand. You can use the above steps to build a strong brand and attract and recruit your target IT candidates. But the benefits of strong branding extend beyond hiring top talent.

From enjoying a competitive edge in the market and prompt customer recognition to better engagement with stakeholders, employees, customers, and your community, enhanced credibility, and a boost in business profit, you will get several benefits of rock-solid branding. Start building a strong employer brand in the competitive IT job market today!

And if you need help with finding top IT talent, come to us at InHunt World.

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