Brand building for recruitment - Business Works
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Brand building for recruitment

by Simon Conington – MD, BPS love speaking to employers who are looking for new staff because they're growing. However it's less rewarding when the reason I'm called in is because the organisation is struggling to retain staff. Typically a company that struggles to retain staff will also be less attractive to new recruits as good candidates now have lots of tools at their disposal to research employers and will be deterred by the same things that make people leave such as poor brand image.

Many of the employers I talk to think that salary is the number one thing that will attract and retain good employees. It isn't. As a recruiter we see some very significant downsides experienced by employers who focus too much on salary. If that's all you offer then you will only attract a certain type of person, who will remain open to a better offer. For the same reason I always advise employers against poaching staff with just the lure of high salary offers. Bribing people to join you does not create a loyal team and you'll drive up salaries across the industry.

The salary you offer has to be competitive for the job, the industry and the region you’re in but it should also be tailored to the experience of the individual. It is worth paying more for someone who brings additional skills and experience to your company. You will be able to offer less to someone who needs development in some areas. You then need to ensure that your salary levels stay competitive and rewards skills and experience gained, or others will poach your best employees.

Good people have their pick of employers and, just as you will look beyond CVs when recruiting, they will check you out to see just what sort of employer you're likely to be and what impact you’re likely to have on their career. The best candidates are intelligent enough to realise that it is worth accepting a job at a competitive or even lower rate of pay if it's with the 'right' company and they will actively look for one with a good brand.

what will candidates find when the Google you?

Candidates often start their research by looking you up online. What will they find when they Google you? What do your social media channels say about you? Sometimes the media can be very unfair, but if you do nothing to manage your reputation, those misrepresentations will be the first thing that good candidates will discover about you and it will act as a huge deterrent from them even considering you as an employer.

In both these searches, candidates will also be looking for clues about your company culture. One of the things that will tell potential employees most is your office. Have a look around with fresh eyes; what would your office tell an intelligent, ambitious new recruit about you? Why would they choose to work in your office? Why would someone want to stay working in your office?

The key to retaining good people is to ensure that your people feel valued. Good employees will be keen to develop their skills, if they can't with you they'll go elsewhere, or worse they'll stay with you and their skills will go out of date. An effective training strategy requires a regular review process that identifies developmental needs and how they’ll be met.

It is also worth bringing in skills through recruitment. The companies that only promote from within don't benefit from any challenges to their culture. They don't get the chance to learn how others do things and they only have the experience of their own work. A recruit from a company with a prestigious brand will also bring with them some of that reflected glory.

Reviewing your branding is not necessarily expensive; it just needs very careful thought and too often, whilst a company pays huge attention to attracting clients, the brand needed to attract the best people, is ignored. It is one of the most expensive mistakes you can make.

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