What’s Your Attraction?

Just like you, I know a lot of great companies. Some seem more interesting than others for varying reasons. Google is known for things such as innovation of new technologies, collaborative office spaces and free food. Zappos is known for hiring the right people that fit their culture and can contribute to the fun and weirdness aspect of their organization.

So “What’s YOUR Attraction?” Why would someone want to work for you?  You say you have a mission statement – who cares? You still haven’t answered the question. Do you have cool technology? Are you a fun place to work? Do you have a product or solution that could have World Domination? I bet you haven’t even given this subject very much thought until now.

If you haven’t looked out your window lately there is still a war for talent; fact is there will ALWAYS be a war for top talent. So you better know what attracts top talent to your company and build on it.

Company brand vs. Employer brand

You need to consider that your company brand and employer brand will be closely aligned.  Gallup recently noted in a post that companies spend a lot of time delivering on their “company brand promise” to customers. But when it comes to attracting and selecting employees they found:

“… companies will use far less sophisticated methods for selecting employees than they do for almost anything else. Companies will spend fortunes on facilities, technologies, and advertising, but they often have no idea what kind of employee is best able to deliver the brand promise. Some organizations don’t even care. Retail and food service companies are notorious for hiring emotionally disengaged employees and making them the face of the company to customers.” This is all the more reason to attract the right people for your company from the start.

In order to attract the right people you have to have a compelling message and reason for them to join. I recommend you start by asking your employee base what they think your employer brand is. Gallup found that 60% of executives surveyed strongly agreed that they knew what their company stands for and how it makes them different from their competitors. Only 46% of managers and 37% of other employees strongly agreed and a 9% of front line and customer facing employees have little understanding of the company brand.

If your own employees don’t understand your company and employer brand how do you expect to attract other top employees? The Gallup survey also shows it’s not enough to have a good product and develop a slogan; you have to incorporate your company and employer brand into every level and fiber of the whole organization for it to have any effect.

So where should you start?

1. Know that your employees play a key role in bringing your brand to life.  For recruiting purposes this is big.
2. Periodically assess how well your employees know and understand your brand. Do this for your customer facing activities as well as recruiting activities.
3. Ensure your new employees understand what your company and employer brand stand for. You can incorporate this into your on-boarding process.

How do you find out what potential employees want from you, the employer?

Randstad recently conducted an Employer Brand Survey of approximately 7,000 individuals.  While the survey did show some differences between what men and women look for in a company it also listed various categories you might consider when developing or building out your own employer brand.

Salary and Benefits – No surprise here, everyone wants to be compensated fairly. Consider implementing a pay for performance bonus and/or perhaps a project bonus for those projects that come in under budget or are delivered early.

Location –You can’t do too much about this one except you could consider adding flex schedules so people that don’t need to be at the physical location every day can work from home periodically. This also fits into the Work Life Balance category.

Advancement – While organizations have become quite flat in the past few years, you can always provide other advancement opportunities to your employees. Don’t think of advancement just as a “move up” think of it as a “move across” or add other enrichment opportunities that allow employees to continue to growth within YOUR organization.

The bottom line is employers can no longer rest on their reputation. If you want to stay competitive, you must be willing to develop a parallel employer brand to your company brand.

Happy recruiting!