According to research for the latest Salary Guide From Robert Half , 93% of hiring managers face challenges with finding the skilled talent they need. These challenges go beyond just meeting their salary demands or recruiting them fast enough to scoop them up off the market — simply locating professionals with the skills employers need is difficult. If you’re struggling to find skilled talent, you can always try looking in more places. But a better way to overcome this obstacle is to make top talent want to come to you. How? The answer may lie in building a magnetic employer brand that not only reflects the positives of working at your firm but also delivers your message to those workers who you most would want to hire.
In short, your employer brand is your company’s reputation as a great (or not so great) place to work. This perception encompasses everything from your organizational culture and values to the pay, benefits and work experience you offer. Essentially, it’s the narrative that’s being told about what it’s like to work for you. It’s not something you can directly control, but you can certainly have a strong influence on it. Central to your employer brand is your employee value proposition, or EVP. This is a unique set of offerings and values your company provides, which sets you apart from competitors. Your EVP could include your approach to innovation, your commitment to employee development or your dedication to creating an inclusive work environment. Taken together, your EVP and employer brand show people what’s special about working at your company and encourage them to become — or stay — part of your story.
Five reasons stand out as to why shining a light on your employer brand could transform your organization:  Attracting and retaining top talent — More than just attracting great employees, a top-tier employer brand nurtures them. When your brand reflects a positive work culture, it instills pride among your team, motivating employees to maintain high-performance levels and stick around for the long haul. Cost-effective recruitment — A strong brand means potential hires are more likely to actively seek you out, reducing the need for costly outreach efforts. Empowering employee advocates — Your team members are your brand's most credible ambassadors. These days, when job seekers often rely on word-of-mouth and employee reviews on Glassdoor and other sites, positive feedback from your current staff can sway potential candidates to apply for your open role. Showcasing culture and diversity — Many job seekers gravitate toward workplaces where diversity isn't just accepted but celebrated. An employer brand that highlights your unique company culture and diverse workforce can be particularly attractive to such candidates. Appealing to tech-savvy talent — Spotlighting your innovative approach and tech prowess can draw in professionals looking for a forward-thinking work environment.
Here are some proven strategies to build and maintain an employer brand that reflects your organization’s strengths and appeals to the right talent for your teams.
Begin by pinpointing the unique advantages and experiences your organization offers. Assess factors like competitive salaries, career growth opportunities and flexible scheduling. Gather feedback from employees on aspects of your corporate culture that are harder to measure but equally crucial — how workers perceive the firm’s management style, for example, or the sense of community within your teams. Use what you learn to build a clear picture of your company’s unique offerings. Perhaps you’re a large-scale enterprise boasting best-in-class benefits and mentoring programs, or maybe a nimble startup offering attractive stock options or equity packages. Keep it authentic to your brand, aiming not to appeal to all but to resonate deeply with those candidates who align best with what makes your company stand out.
Use your company website and social media accounts to share frequent updates about your activities and to celebrate employee wins. Make sure what you’re saying and showing online mirrors what’s happening inside your company. For example, suppose you’re an accounting firm that’s made huge strides toward diversifying its workforce. If your website still features a non-diverse stock photo, it undercuts that progress. Updating your imagery to reflect what your real team looks like celebrates your achievements and positions you as a forward-thinking player in the job market.
The recruitment process is often a candidate’s first taste of your company culture. Make it count by helping ensure it’s smooth, professional and engaging. Begin by making the application process user-friendly. For instance, let candidates apply using their LinkedIn profiles for convenience. And keep candidates in the loop with regular updates, showing respect for their time and interest. If a candidate doesn’t make the cut, give constructive feedback where feasible. Advise on skills they could sharpen and encourage them to reapply for future positions. This personalized approach leaves a positive mark, making even those not selected feel valued. 
Demonstrate how your organization supports work-life balance, whether through flexible work hours, remote and hybrid work options, or mental health days. Give some real-life examples — perhaps an employee who adjusts their schedule for family commitments or someone who takes advantage of wellness programs. These stories resonate with candidates seeking employers who understand the importance of life outside of work.
Encourage employees to share their work experiences online. For example, a team member could blog about their participation in a company-organized environmental cleanup. Such posts showcase the individual’s contributions and highlight your firm’s commitment to social responsibility. Alternatively, video interviews with staff discussing their recent success in a challenging project can give a real-life glimpse into your fast-paced work environment and collaborative culture. Proactively tackle any problems or conflicts that may arise within your team. Set up straightforward and confidential ways for employees to share their feedback. Opening lines of communication inside your company can help avoid negative chatter outside of it, protecting your brand.
It’s essential to periodically check the pulse of your employer brand. Use metrics like how quickly you fill roles and how long employees stay to assess its effectiveness. Don’t forget to monitor online reviews and social media content about your company. This real-time feedback can help you tweak your branding strategy, keeping it fresh, appealing and in tune with both your team’s and prospective candidates’ expectations and experiences. Ready to become the employer everyone wants to work for? Then define what sets your company apart and let the world know about it. This is the first step in drawing in and keeping the kind of talent that will propel your business forward.