HR Insights: Employer Branding, What it’s Not
The numbers might be making rounds quite late in the day, but they get across the message loud and clear. The findings of a 2011 survey on Employer Branding highlighted the following key points:
• More than 40% of the surveyed companies use social media for employer branding
• Approximately 20% of marketing departments shoulder the responsibility of employer brand marketing
• 60% of the existing websites make use of their career websites to market their employer brand
• Approximately 35% of companies resort to coaching/training methods
The onset of the age of Social Media is clearly taking all the credit away from the early inceptors of employer branding. The pressure on HR and marketing departments to reinvent their employer branding strategies is mounting.
Amidst all the variations that are being introduced in the style and fashion of employer branding, there is a new debate spawning across the length and breadth of the communication industry. Is it a cock-and-bull story? Is Employer Branding indeed a myth; or worse still, a passing fad?
It can be claimed in a single roar (which would be more than enough): Employer Branding is for real. You do it all the time, whether through word-of-mouth, referrals, testimonials, or on your social media profiles. So the questions being raised should be concerned with the methodology of employer branding, for there is nothing dubious about employer branding bring a trend alive and kicking. While any text can define what employer branding is, CareerBuilder India gives you a gist on what it is not:
1. Don’t Limit it as a Fashion Statement: Organizations today don’t value what they have. Because the entire focus on the core objectives, employer branding is sidelined by most of the departments. Then there is a trend of taking it up only during the *marketing season*. For those who consider employer branding as a fashion statement please don’t understate its significance by drawing such comparisons. It is not a project that will be timed-out one day.
2. Don’t think that it’s Easy: If there is any myth that surrounds employer branding then it is the perception that it’s fairly easy. While it is definitely not rocket science, it definitely takes time to understand the strategy and purpose of employer branding. In case you think that employer branding is your substitute to heavy and expensive marketing campaigns, you have got the concept all wrong.
3. It Markets Your “Employer”: Yes and No. What is meant by the word employer here is not the mortal physical being that is responsible for keeping a check on your activities in office, but the ‘workplace’ atmosphere that you work in. So when an IT company takes up employer branding it is promoting the culture and the environs of the place rather than the corporate heads leading the company.
4. It Lives in a Silo of HR: This myth has been broken by the passage of time. Yes, it was a fact five years down the line that employer branding was a *thing* of HR and Marketing departments. However, today technology plays a vital role in spreading the word. The advent of newer technologies and the scope offered by SEO has pepped up employer branding to quite an extent.
Employer branding is a contemporary name for the practice of marketing the culture and practices of a workplace. It is a bait for attracting the right talent at the right place. In a way employer branding is about marketing for HR. Nonetheless, it is entirely up to you how you do it.