a dialogue with potential candidates

As job mobility increases and skills shortages continue to mount, the importance of a positive employer brand can only grow.

The employer brand signals the values and ethos of a company. It encapsulates the many different attributes that can make an organisation an attractive place to work but, conversely, it can also deter potential candidates. Forward-thinking organisations look at how their employer brand shapes perceptions among potential candidates for current positions, and, importantly, how they are perceived by other sources of talent for the future. 

Successful companies have a deep understanding of the importance of the candidate experience. Social media comments and posts have the power to influence perceptions of an employer brand. When a candidate feels strongly – positively or negatively – about the quality of experience they have had with an employer, they have an immediate opportunity to shape the brand. Human resource leaders recognise that this power exists externally as well as internally, before an individual even becomes a candidate, as well as during employment (as employees may function as brand ambassadors). 

Accurate, authentic messaging on behalf of an organisation is an effective way to attract best-match candidates, who ally themselves with your brand ethos and values. This in turn can add value to the business. From mobile-optimised career sites, to blogs and videos, and two-way dialogue during an application process, the employer that enables high candidate – and potential candidate – engagement through the promotion of its brand values can expect to connect better with its employees.

Many leading organisations take active steps to monitor what is being said about them on social media and join the social ‘conversation’. The growing influence of sites such as LinkedIn and Glassdoor heightens the importance of authenticity in how the organisation portrays itself: organisations can’t rely on marketing ‘gloss’ to convey their employer brand.

As Randstad’s annual Australia Employer Brand Research highlights, the factors that matter most to candidates, don’t necessarily chime with an employer’s priorities. While candidates value work-life balance above all, it’s a low-ranking concept for employers. While pay is invariably important, a candidate’s choice of one employer over another could come down to attributes that organisations may not focus on quite so closely, such as a pleasant working environment. Therefore, while some employers will try to target talent by offering above-market salary packages, smarter organisations will be able to promote a wider set of attractors, rather than simply relying on financial reward. 

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