The market thinks:
Candidates prefer to apply to well-known brands.
That’s simply not true. Employer reputation – and working culture – are far bigger draws.
What do we mean by ‘brand’? Is it a logo, a tone of voice, or a set of original opinions? Is it a cool product offering, or a sassy social media persona?
Perhaps it’s a collection of all these things. Our point is, a great brand and a great company to work for are two separate things.
More often than not, your culture and your employer reputation are greater drivers for people than brand association ever could be.
Of course, sometimes the two cross over. Take Google, for instance. It’s not only a highly successful brand; it’s also known for its culture and how it looks after its people. And, it offers an engaging recruitment process too.
What makes a recruitment process attractive?
While some companies go as far as to adopt game-based selection methods, others fall short by never even acknowledging applications. In general, you should aim to strike a balance. Run a process that’s friendly, respects participants’ time, and accurately assesses people’s skills. Above all, you should avoid asking people to jump through unnecessary hoops. Think mind-melting application portals that require people to re-type out what’s on the CV they just submitted.
How about a working culture?
Google wins points for creating a fun atmosphere with free gym and cooking classes. It also develops people with its Global Education Leave Program, and supports them with on-site health services. Its success shows that people look for employers that give them everything they need to succeed, reward them fairly, and have the right mix of people that can work together as a team.
What are the additional considerations for small and large businesses?
Small businesses must aim to become known in their area as supportive, progressive employers. They can do this by investing in local initiatives. For example, sponsoring job fairs and offering work experience to nearby schools and colleges.
Big businesses with vast pools of customers (think telecoms companies) must approach their brand and employer reputations hand in hand. Because unhappy customers might one day become applicants, and vice versa.
So, how can you improve your employer brand?
The answer is two-fold. First, you can put more time into objectively assessing people, with the likes of psychometric assessments. This will highlight the fact you’re a fair employer, who genuinely wants to build a team of people who love their jobs and working with each other.
Next, you can make sure to offer feedback afterwards. This will make your process seem faster and more transparent, and show that you value all applicants, whether successful or not.
How we do it at Thomas
To make sure we practice what we preach, we embed assessments into our own selection processes. We do this by building job profiles based on behaviours, aptitudes and personality traits that are most important. And then we match people to open roles based on person-job fit and more.
- Brand’s not all that important. But how you treat people is. So if you’re not a big name – no worries. Strengthening your recruitment processes will help you build your employer brand.
- Psychometric assessments can help you remove biases. Which will show people what a fair employer you are, and result in a more diverse and inclusive environment.