Though the year 2021 has come to an end, the challenges of its Great Resignation seem as though they will last well through 2022. While in years past, we once saw a talent war in many industries, it is more likely that we will be faced with what we like to call a “talent apocalypse” moving forward, or a scenario in which the most competitive talent will be extremely hard to come by. And as a result, heavily strategized employer branding is one of the most effective responses that companies have left.
In this article, we are going to specifically focus on employer branding initiatives that you should focus on in 2022, especially if your employer branding budget is tight or if you’ve just started investing in your employer branding strategy. While it may seem like a lot to juggle at once, the good news is that many employer brand initiatives are incredibly cost-effective, leaving a positive ripple effect for years after their initial implementation.
Today, we invite you to tackle the essential elements of employer branding for the upcoming year with us to ensure that your business has a powerful presence when approaching new candidates.
In fact, let’s jump right in! As an employer, you can easily begin by reviewing your candidate journey from start to finish and envisioning what it’s like to walk in your candidates’ shoes. This usually starts with delving into each step of the candidate journey and seeing what can be refined to make for a more cohesive and rewarding experience.
Be transparent in the job description
As easy as it may sound, reviewing the job description to see if it accurately explains the role and communicates the work culture is a powerful step in improving your employer brand. Consider this: does it include the unique selling points as to why potential candidates should submit an application? Just like an advertisement, a job listing should entice candidates to move forward in the application process.
Other considerations may include: are the listed mandatory requirements really mandatory to get hired for the role? Is it clear whether it's a remote, hybrid, or onsite position? The job description should be as clear and accurate as possible, as putting extra requirements that are not really mandatory may discourage qualified candidates from applying for the role.
Simplify the application process
Just as you reviewed the job description, devote some time to digging into the application process. The required steps should be easy and fast to complete, since you should only ask for absolutely essential information without being redundant. For instance, once an applicant has uploaded their resume or CV, are they still required to input their previous work experience? These repetitive steps can be rather time-consuming and may dissuade candidates from actually completing the application process in its entirety.
Did you know that around 50% of employers believe that a longer application process is actually a good thing because it "weeds out" applicants? In reality, the opposite is true. If your company is interested in vetting a large, diverse pool of applicants, keeping the process as simple as possible is key.
Secondly, once candidates submit an application, it’s important that they are kept informed of the hiring timeline, regardless of their status as a viable candidate. If you plan to reject an applicant, communicate as such. Never ghost candidates, as it can have a profoundly negative impact on your employer image.
While it’s true that many applicants may be competing for the same position, it’s important to treat each and every one with respect. A Korn Ferry survey revealed that 75% of candidates say it’s unlikely that they would accept a job if they were treated poorly during the interview process. So, if you want to secure the most competitive talent in your field, you’re going to need to provide consistently excellent candidate care.
Smooth out your onboarding process
In order to ensure that hired candidates have a smooth onboarding experience, it’s vital that your company does everything it can to keep all employees informed––especially in a timely manner. Even if it’s just periodically, review the process with your team to identify and fill any apparent gaps in the new hire experience.
Learn from exit interviews
Your company can reap so much insight from exit interviews alone. Devote some time to gathering and analyzing this information, as the responses can help your company identify lapses in the employee experience. After all, the key to increasing productivity, bettering job satisfaction, and improving your employer image is really taking this feedback into account.
Pay mind to Glassdoor reviews
Keep an eye on popular employer review sites like Glassdoor, where past and current employees can offer feedback on their experience. Understand that both positive and negative feedback can be incredibly beneficial to improving your employer brand––by either bringing awareness to what you’re doing right as an employer or what could still use some attention.
Carefully map out candidate journeys
Taking a closer look at your company’s candidate journey can offer your company so much valuable information. Start by mapping this experience out into distinctive steps, in which candidates can be offered supplemental information and resources surrounding your business.
Of course, in order to craft a very clear candidate journey, work closely with your team to really characterize your candidate persona, or the ideological embodiment of the perfect candidate. As you flesh out the details of this journey, be sure to prioritize content related to Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion; Health and Wellness; and CSR.
Implement a referral program
Research shows that a whopping 71% of candidates explore new opportunities and find new job opportunities through their colleagues. Therefore, if your company still does not have a referral program in place, it’s time to get the ball rolling.
The primary goal of employee referral programs is to make inbound referrals a more sustainable and more reliable source of candidates. When executed correctly, these programs are one of the most productive and effective recruiting strategies readily available to hiring teams.
Despite the many challenges employers have faced in 2021, the new year promises much more improvement in the realm of employer branding when companies are intentional about their growth.
Interested in learning about other ways to step up your game when it comes to employer branding? Consult us for a better look into how it can transform your hiring process and employee retention rates!