Employer branding for recruitment and retention

Competing for talent is tougher than ever. Whether you have open positions to fill or star employees you don't want to lose, creating an employer brand aligned with a proactive recruitment and retention strategy can make you an employer of choice.

Hiring for an open position is both an awareness effort and a behavior change campaign. First, you have break through the overwhelming noise competing for attention. Then you have to recognize you’re asking candidates to make a change—to their security, routines, commutes, and, possibly, to their lives if they need to move to take your offer—and create messaging accordinglyA standalone job posting isn’t going to cut it.

Even once you have your team in place, keeping them also requires a long-term strategy and commitment. One with multiple narratives, touchpoints, and engagement levels. 

Altogether, this is your employer brand. This is the all-encompassing representation of your organization as an employerthe image you project to attract and retain talent. This encompasses your internal purpose, values, culture, commitment to employee development, and community reputation.

A few of the challenges we’re seeing for today’s employee recruitment and retention effort:

  • Constant media headlines and online influencers criticizing health employers and jobs (this is particularly a problem in healthcare and education)
  • Burnout for current workers (again, a major issue in healthcare and education)
  • Rising costs of living, inflation, and business costs
  • Declining optimism for the future, particularly for younger workers
  • Changing generational expectations for job satisfactioN
  • A persistent shortage of qualified candidates (everywhere but particularly in rural areas)
  • Recruiting for a job is a behavior change campaign. You’re asking candidates to make a change—to their security, routines, commutes, and, possibly, to their lives if they need to move to take your offer. This takes a bigger strategy and storytelling effort with multiple narratives, touch-points, and engagement levels.
  • So, no, an advertising campaign isn’t going to work on its own. It’s a tool in the toolbox, not the solution itself. 

A job posting is not a simple offer anymore.

Clients often come to us needing to fill open, high-stakes positions. They ask for a digital advertising campaign to recruit new candidates. Every time, we challenge them on the effectiveness of this approach—and the ROI.

Having a job opening and posting about it on social media or as a paid digital ad as a first step mostly falls far short of the expected flood of resumes clients want. Essentially, you’re Sisyphus pushing the rock up hill and getting pelted with other rocks from all directions. 

While you can’t remove every roadblock to recruiting new candidates, you do have the power to move the needle on some. It starts with defining your employer brand— your vision, story, values, benefit proposition, influencer platform, messaging pillars, voice, etc. 

We approach this process in three steps:

    1. Clarifying and reinvigorating your employer communications both internally and externally
    2. Recruiting internal influencers to the cause and providing them the resources they need to help sell you to candidates
    3. Designing an excellent, painless, and compelling candidate experience

Once you have a clear employer brand, you have a proactive tool acting as the foundation for simplifying and streamlining all future recruitment efforts, including launching creative and engaging digital advertising campaigns that deliver the candidates you want.

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3fold Communications is a community connection marketing agency specializing in recruitment and activation of diverse customers, regions, and influencers.

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