In business, brand is everything. But corporate branding goes beyond logos and catchy jingles. It can be a powerful tool that gives your organisation a head start in attracting top talent.

There’s no doubt that good branding plays an essential role in your company’s corporate culture. A highly respected brand is much more than an advertising or marketing tool though. It can also be the foundation on which your organisation’s reputation is built, with the ability to impact all stakeholders including the job candidates you want to hire.

Find out why your corporate brand is so important, how you can build a strong brand, and how to harness your brand as part of a successful recruitment process.

Why company branding is crucial to recruitment

Just as a candidate’s resume and conduct during an interview will influence your thoughts about their suitability for your company, so too can company branding can shape a candidate’s perception about whether your organisation offers the ideal workplace for them.

Your company’s reputation, strengthened by your brand strategy, plays an integral role in attracting, securing and retaining the best talent. Here are some key factors to consider when it comes to company branding:

Is the company externally recognised?

Recognition from peers, competitors and industry bodies are a great way to attract top talent. Perhaps you’ve been nominated for a Business Award for Employer of Choice, or had the work of your HR department celebrated. Accolades such as these can improve your company reputation to potential candidates, exhibiting you as not only a positive institution, but one that is recognised as such by external peak judging bodies.

There are also awards that recognise the packages and opportunities offered to employees. Whether it’s higher-than-average salaries or extraordinary professional development providing, as consultants Aon Hewitt put it, an “exceptionally positive workplace experience for employees” makes you eligible for their respected accolades such as a Best Employer Award.

Recruit talent who share the company principles and vision

Positive company branding that includes a powerful organisational purpose and employee value system suggests there is something clear and meaningful that guides every staff member, no matter how diverse their role or experience.

From customer service team members through to the most senior executives, if you’re known for your purpose and values, exhibit an ongoing commitment to these, and hire in accordance with them, you can be sure that you’ll attract candidates who feel aligned to your purpose and vision, and who are eager to identify with, and contribute to it.

How the company responds to a crisis

Your corporate brand is everywhere. It’s on your website, living through your social media channels, and any online forum in which you’re mentioned. It’s contained in your job ads and what you present in each job offer.

Being aware that you need an always-on, dedicated approach to all aspects of company branding means that even when you’re managing a crisis or responding to negative feedback, it will be handled in a consistent way that reinforces your professionalism and efficacy. This shows candidates that your brand doesn’t fall apart when the going gets tough, and that your company responds to challenges collaboratively, improving your strategies and approach as a result. This is a reaffirming prospect for potential job candidates who live in the digital sphere where often first impressions count.

What do current staff say about the company?

Having a reputation as a financial institution that is innovative and offers flexible hours, or an IT company that provides medical insurance and unlimited sick leave is insignificant unless it is recognised and embraced by current employees.

If your corporate brand lacks integrity for what it offers, this can damage your corporate reputation. Existing staff who do not see a remedy to this may have no problem holding back when providing others with a very candid review of your company with their networks. This can greatly affect future potential recruitment.

Take the time to ensure that you are and remain committed to your current staff. You might not be in a position to offer free breakfasts or a casual dress code, but if your branding truthfully reflects the consistently engaged people and successful projects your company boasts, then you can be sure future candidates will see you as a great place to work, both to share their expertise and to grow personally and professionally.

Recruiting talent that will stay with the business

Powerful company branding is not only crucial to recruiting top talent, but ensuring that you recruit top talent that remains with you. If your company branding and company reputation is positive, inclusive, and widely known, you’ll increase your chances of hiring employees that feel passionate about your organisation and who will be proud to work there.

Motivated and satisfied employees are less likely to job-hop or be perpetually on the lookout for something more engaging. A strong corporate brand has the potential to not only hire superb candidates, but equally reinforce retention.

With the right approach, your corporate brand can be an overarching point of appeal that attracts high-calibre professionals to your company, keeps staff motivated and encourages employees to stay with the organisation.