The Critical Role of Employer Branding in Executive Search in the Age of Industry 4.0
Digitalisation and industry 4.0 go beyond a restructuring of business processes. They demand that organisations take a different approach to dealing with people. Though digitalisation takes the place of people in some cases, at the end of the day, it is still people who run the processes. These people must be better qualified than ever before if a company is to remain competitive.
Employer Brand: Often a Hindrance to Successful Digitalisation
Even though many businesses are well-placed to take advantage of the digital transformation and the future of work, this does not mean that they will automatically attract high potentials. That is because their employer brand often lags behind how attractive they really are as employers. This turns into a problem when positions become vacant. If the job description by itself is not interesting enough to attract a new candidate, then a strong employer brand can take up the slack.
What Is Employer Branding Exactly?
It is important to differentiate between employer brand and employer branding. An employer brand is basically an employer’s reputation among its employees and on the job market. Employer branding covers everything an organisation does to present itself as an attractive employer preferable to others. The idea is to communicate company values in a way that aligns them with the values of the employee.
How Employer Branding Supports Executive Search Processes
When the employer branding efforts make candidates aware of the alignment in values, the employer brand is effective and the candidates are more likely to choose that employer. This speeds up the executive search process and in some cases makes a successful placement possible in the first place. Successful employer branding campaigns also help employees identify with their employers and the organisation’s goals. That improves both performance and the work environment.
Employer branding done right snowballs into long-term improvements in the organisation’s image and ability to attract high performers.
The Way Organisations Can Implement Employer Branding Successfully
To begin with, remember that your employer brand arises from your reputation as an employer. This means that putting together an employer branding campaign that talks up your attractiveness as an employer will not improve your employer brand over the long term if the campaign does not have a basis in truth.
Step 1: You must actually be an attractive employer for high performers – offer them what they want and treat them how they want to be treated – to build an attractive employer brand.
Step 2: Talk about it!
Employer Branding Comes Full Circle
Shocking but true: many employers sabotage their employer brands. Their executive search and recruitment processes can and often do ruin an employer brand with candidates – the people the employer brand is supposed to impress in the first place. It does not help your employer brand with candidates if you have flexible hours for employees, but cannot manage to show flexibility when setting appointments. A friendly corporate culture for employees must also extend to friendly treatment of candidates, or all that fancy employer branding is for naught.
To put it simply: when it comes to your employer brand, the way your organisation treats one person – including an individual candidate – is the way your organisation treats everyone. Ignore this lesson at your peril.