What does it take for your company to be known as an employer of choice for employees and candidates alike? A strong employer brand that demonstrates why your company is a great place to work is important in talent acquisition and candidate attraction. It takes some planning and funding for marketing and communications, support from executives to implement and maintain, and ongoing management to sustain employer branding.
That can be done on a small or large scale, depending on the size of your organization and its resources, but employer branding requires investment. The Employer Brand International’s 2012/2013 Global Research Study found that more than 25 percent of companies plan to invest more in their employer brands in 2013.
Align Metrics with Business Objectives
How do you measure the value that investment in employer branding delivers? Employer Brand International’s 2011 Global Study found that retention rate is the metric most commonly used to measure ROI on employer branding, followed by employee engagement, quality of hire, cost per hire, and number of applicants. But which metrics you use in your company to measure the value of your employer branding spending will depend on your business and recruiting objectives.
Do the Math
The best place to start when you want to measure the return on investment for employer branding is to do the math, or study or audit your current employer branding budget and results. If you require a large number of new college graduates each year but are spending more on sourcing and reaching out to passive candidates than for on-campus activities, you need a metric that measures dollars spent on employer branding by type of candidate and hire to clearly monitor results and be able to make adjustments when necessary.
Know Your Reputation as an Employer
Perhaps one of the first places to start when you want to know the ROI of your employer branding is to know your reputation as an employer. Study online sources such as Glassdoor.com, conduct quality employee and candidate experience surveys, and take a look at the number and quality of employee referrals you get to know if people think your company is a good place to work. Use that information as a baseline for employer branding improvement efforts, and measure results of things like number of employee referrals before an employer branding marketing campaign on your company career page, Facebook, and LinkedIn.
The most commonly used employer branding ROI metrics per Employer Brand International’s 2012/2013 Global Research Study are a good guide for how to measure your branding efforts and results. But tailoring metrics aligned with your business objectives is the best way to get the real measure of value that you can use to better focus what you spend and what you do to build your employer brand. Identify the drivers of your employer brand value to focus activities there.
For example, if you need high quality sales people to serve customers, make sales, and increase revenues, building your employer brand as a highly competitive and highly compensated sales organization that attracts top sales people will point the way to what you need to measure, such as promoting your sales incentives and commissions programs or marketing your organization as the best place for experienced sales people in your industry.
Employer branding takes investment in time and resources, and metrics make sure you are measuring the results of your investment. That way you are able to focus those investments where they produce the best returns and get the best results – in applicants, candidates, hires, and retention.