As the world becomes increasing connected via digital platforms, companies (and especially their HR departments) are realising the importance of building strong employer branding online.

Why employer branding matters

Today, social media platforms and career review websites make it easy for job applicants to research your company before applying for a position. As a result, your brand’s online presence will often be a candidate’s first impression of your company.

In fact, studies have shown that 78% of job seekers research a company before applying for a position, with 79% of them likely to use social media in their job hunts. Your reputation precedes you, let’s make sure it’s a positive reputation.

Let’s talk about employer branding

What exactly is “employer branding”? Simply put, it is your company’s reputation as an employer. Are you known for your employee-friendly practices, or has your brand developed a reputation as a “slave house” for potential employees?

Positive employer branding will help your business stand out when recruiting potential candidates, and can definitely sway top candidates towards joining your company (over the competition). Strong employer branding also make retaining current employees easier, lowering staff turnover. And the numbers back this up – CareerBuilder discovered that 67% of candidates will accept a lower pay if the company has positive reviews online, while 88% of millennials believe that being part of the right company culture is crucial.

The financial benefits of a strong employer brand

There are also tangible financial benefits to developing strong employer branding. LinkedIn reported that a company with a stronger employer brand than its competitors typically see a 43% decrease in their cost per employee hired.

Additionally, a study conducted by the Boston Consulting Group reveals that companies that invest in employer branding can expect to see increases in revenue and profit margins by as much as 3.5% and 2.5% respectively. With social media so pervasive and influential today, companies who are not making full use of these platforms to boost their own profile are at a major disadvantage when competing with businesses that do.

Measuring results

So, how to tell if your business has a strong reputation as a good employer? You can use key metrics you can use to measure your success, including:

  • The quality of your new hires
  • The frequency of employee referrals
  • The number of favourable online reviews left by both candidates and employees

Remember, your employees are also advocates

Staff who work in companies with an affirmative employer branding are typically more engaged and motivated – and are also more likely to talk favourably about the organisation on their personal social media accounts, or even on career review websites. Remember not to overlook this important group of advocates while developing your employer branding strategy – your employees can be your organisation’s most powerful brand ambassadors.

So, unless you’re heading a security or defence firm, feel free to loosen up on any overly-restrictive social media policies you may have. Give employees space to share the positive aspects about working in your company, while setting some guidelines to ensure they still keep all confidential information offline.

Partnering with a recruitment consultant

There is another avenue for building strong employer branding, and that’s by partnering with a reputable recruitment consultant like Linktrix.

Rather than leave the task of “employer research” to candidates, a good recruitment agency will work with you to learn about the ins-and-outs of your company, before selling all these benefits directly to top prospects.

This significantly improves your chances of securing the candidates you want, and helps to start your employer-employee relationship on the right foot – with these new employees already stepping into a workspace that they feel confident and happy with.