Let’s get a few obvious proclamations out of the way so we can get to the point.
A company needs a team.
A company needs a talented team.
A company needs talented hires who align with its core values, goals and company culture.
If we ask any CEO to tell us what the top 3 things that keep them up at night are, we would be willing to bet that “recruiting and keeping great talent” is one of the three. Honestly, the vast majority would likely give this answer given only one or two spaces for the answer.
So, now let’s talk about how companies do that.
Companies with strong employer brands understand the importance of becoming a “destination” for top talent and, resultantly, those are the companies that do it best. A company’s employer brand, simply put, is the image that company portrays as an employer. Rapidly evolving companies typically need to bring in talent faster than when they are in a growth phase. A company must find a way to evolve its “employer brand” to ensure top talent that is right for the company is actually attracted to the work environment and wants to work for said company.
Not every potential employee values working for the sexy, edgy company with a lenient dress code. Often, companies throw all of these bells and whistles into their office environment and company structure to strengthen talent attraction, but don’t to consider the type of talent they require. These companies can fail to provide substance. This substance holds actual value to the type of top talent they seek and they wind up losing the ability to be enticing. All companies should focus on being the ideal company for whoever their ideal candidate is and being able to convey that message as well as practice this standard authentically.
Employers who fail to invest in their reputation could be paying up to an additional $4,723 per employee hired. The perceived value is both reputation and image but reputation is a factor that should not be ignored.
According to a survey performed by Universum, there are FOUR focuses a company should have in order to strengthen its employer brand: “Targeting the right talent, standing out from the crowd, delivering on your promises, and confronting the facts.” Seems simple enough, right?
Let’s check out a few companies we feel are doing it right.
We decided to examine which companies have become pillars in the industry, companies that figured out what really works for them and designated what we thought was their focus.
1. RED BULL
When we think of notable companies that excel in talent attraction we think tend to reference Red Bull first. Granted, we’ve worked with Red Bull directly so we have a line of sight to vouch for their owning talent attraction as a cornerstone of who they are. According to Link Humans Red Bull has 11,886 employees in 171 countries as of the end of 2017. They are obviously doing something right. But what?
We could speak in length about how and why Red Bull establishes it’s famous employer brand, but they say it best. On the title page of the Red Bull Job board they say “We don’t have videos of smiling employees enjoying free lunches and bean bags in colorfully painted offices. Instead, please judge us by the quality and professionalism of what we produce across our many products and projects.” Well damn, drop the mic why don’t you?
They don’t scream “our energy drink gives you energy and action will happen” or tie a pretty bow around their internal experience. They own teams and racecars and events that evoke “ACTION.” They are no BS. They are very specific in conveying their exact environment in regards to employee brand and consumer brand. They are straightforward and transparent in their message to consumers as well as in reference to their company’s culture.
For hospitality giant Airbnb, retention and acquisition dictates its employer brand.
They focus on PEOPLE and on IMPACT.
Airbnb always finds itself on lists of top places to work. Their strategy is simple but they are diligent about sticking to their core values in all aspects of business. The company words its job summaries in a manner that allows them to portray the impact of the work the potential hire would be doing. The diction is positioned to hold merit and have meaning.
Airbnb’s phrasing, when releasing narratives for new positions, is packed with descriptions of positions that convey how integral to the process a particular role is as well as how relevant. Instead of just requirements of the candidate, the communication is geared more towards the requirements and day to day responsibilities of the position itself.
3. IN-AND-OUT BURGER
Ok, we know you must be thinking, “Are they really about to highlight a burger chain?”
In-and-Out Burger still remains family-owned. Forbes estimates the company to have a $750 million valuation but In-and-Out Burger sees no major reasons to go public at this point in time. The fast food giant offers employees competitive salaries, flexible schedules, paid vacations, and 401 (k) plans. This benefit structure reaches far beyond the fast food “norm.” In addition to the the distinct contractual benefits, employees are involved in company affiliated parties and athletic events which elevates morale as well as facilitates team bonding. Based on employee feedback and reviews, data shows that a whopping 91% of employees would recommend working for In-and-Out Burger to their friends.
Lastly, and for some of us most importantly, ALL EMPLOYEES GET A FREE DOUBLE-DOUBLE AND FRIES. EVERY. SINGLE. DAY.
Harvard Business Review