The fundamentals of what makes a great workplace are primarily the same, with a few exceptions for specific industries. Employees expect to feel supported, have a friendly company culture and be offered a competitive benefits package. This means that many EVPs have become quite generic. Employers have a broad idea of what candidates look for and what makes a great workplace, so this is the template they work to. The core pillars of most EVPs are the same, and at times, can lack imagination. Emerging from this pandemic when priorities have changed, it’s safe to assume that most EVPs will also alter. Flexible hours, the ability to work remotely, diversity, commitment to innovation and honesty are all expected to become priorities for employers after this pandemic. All of these aspects are what workers have become accustomed to or have grown to respect in employers throughout the past few months; which means they’re all features candidates will prioritise in their job search.
However, to attract top candidates, your EVP must stand out from the crowd.
Most organisations have a unique consumer value proposition. You wouldn’t want to offer customers exactly the same product or service as they could get elsewhere, that wouldn’t make no business sense. Instead, you celebrate the difference and what makes you distinctive. Therefore, why not apply the same attitude to your employee value proposition? If you wish to attract the highest quality candidates, your EVP should be unique to you; celebrating what sets you apart for employees and underpinning the mission and values, you offer to your customers.
Right now, the jobs market across the globe is in an extraordinary and unique situation. Millions of people are currently in search of employment; however, employers that are hiring are looking to fill some niche roles that will help them to succeed in a world that is very much digital and online first. This means the demand for tech talent and specific skills is high, and the job market is hugely competitive. So, anything an employer can do to stand out from the crowd will help you to connect with talent and become an employer of choice for them.
Not convinced? Here are just some reasons why you should take the time to personalise your EVP:
Find the Right Attitude
It’s easier to develop skills than it is attitude. There are hundreds of courses and training programmes which can teach employees skills and improve their existing knowledge, but you can’t train someone to have an attitude which aligns with your business values. Having your company values and mission as a clear part of your EVP will help ensure everyone in the business is committed and so, you’ll attract people who share this passion. This doesn’t mean hiring people with similar mindsets across the company as we all know that a diverse workforce and differing perspectives can often be the key to success. Instead, it’s about dedication to the job, your business and their role.
To hire people with the right attitude to succeed in your business, you need to ensure that your EVP is tailored, speaks volumes about you as an employer and will resonate with the right kind of person. For example, tech talent may have different priorities than a salesperson. This is when segmenting your EVP and employer brand could come in handy, as it means you’re talking to the right people in a relatable way.
Strengthen Company Culture
Having a tailored and unique EVP will also help to strengthen your company culture. Your personalised EVP will act as a guide to help you to improve employee engagement and awareness of your employer brand. It will help you brand internal processes so that all staff feel immersed in the business and understand their role in delivering the brand mission.
Your EVP or employee value proposition is the driving force behind your company culture; it informs how your employees should behave and how they should expect to be treated in return. Having a clearly defined EVP that is true to you will ensure all employees understand your mission and the part that they play in delivering it in their individual roles and as a whole organisation. It will inform long-term habits and behaviours that are crucial to not only your employer brand but for your consumer brand too.
Builds Employee Loyalty
A more personal approach to your EVP will help to reinforce and build employee loyalty as it can help to form emotional connections within your organisation. By outlining your missions, goals and priorities, it’s likely that the relevant people you connect with will hold similar values in their personal lives and will develop a more profound passion for your employer brand. This will improve your retention rates, as employees are no longer working solely for the sake of working but helping to deliver their passion.
Plus, having an EVP which reflects your business accurately will mean candidates know exactly what to expect from you before they accept a job offer. It’s likely that companies which rely on a generic EVP, don’t always stick to their values as promised; they don’t care about them, and the values aren’t always shown across the business. This will lead to high staff turnover, as expectations do not meet reality. Plus, if employees feel they can get the same or better levels of care elsewhere, what’s to stop them leaving? Having a distinctive EVP will help employees see why they should stay with you.
Gives Your Employees A Say
When it comes to building your EVP, HR should be in the driver’s seat, but you will see better results if you involve the broader business from leadership right through to new starters. Involve all departments in the formation of your EVP and employer brand, and you’ll get a real sense of internal perceptions of your business at all levels, what should be improved and what makes you different. Then any internal processes can be adapted to encapsulate your employer brand and work throughout your organisation.
Imagine if you gave free coffee to all but one department? That would cause tension. Instead, educate everyone on your EVP and employer brand. Allow them to have a say in what the business should be and ensure that the pillars of your EVP reach all levels. Engage in market research focus groups to work out what you could improve in your EVP as well as what is working. This will help you to not only become a more attractive prospect for potential talent but will encourage a more robust company culture and make all employees feel valued. Plus, showing them an EVP that they could not get elsewhere will improve perceptions of you as an employer; give them reasons to stay by celebrating what makes you more significant than your competition.
Match Consumer Brand to Employer Brand
The treatment of your employees must match what your brand wants to achieve. For example, if your brand promises to be loyal and go the extra mile for your customers, this is a behaviour that must translate internally. Otherwise, your employer brand and consumer brand will become disjointed, and this will damage your reputation as an employer. This is a huge reason why your EVP must be personalised and tailored to your business. You can’t promise the world to customers and then treat employees poorly; questions will be raised.
While it doesn’t mean if you promise customers a relaxing experience, your staff should be able to put their feet up and relax too. Instead, it just means that you should treat employees with the same level as respect you would your customers, as they are the ones creating magical experiences. Emerging from COVID-19, respect for employees and kindness is expected to be a priority in the workplace. As we’ve seen throughout the pandemic, hypocrisy or mistreatment will be called out on social media, affecting your chances of attracting top talent later down the line. Therefore, your core values must be echoed throughout your organisation.
There are many reasons why your EVP should be true to you and your company rather than merely echoing what every business in your industry expects candidates are looking for. You must remain authentic to strengthen your employer brand and meet expectations if you wish to hold on to top talent.
If you need advice and guidance on how to refine and personalise your EVP, our experts have experience working with businesses of all sizes from startups to international corporations. We can help you to tailor your EVP and promote your employer brand to relevant and engaged audiences, reducing time to hire and resulting in better quality candidates. Get in touch to find out more.