Creating a cohesive employment brand – one that is separate from your consumer brand – can be a challenge for many organizations. The efforts to build an organization’s employment brand may fall secondary to other business initiatives; however, as the demand for quality health care workers increases, employers need to be more strategic than ever with their recruiting efforts. Strange as it may seem, the stronger your employment brand, the more competitive your organization will be when it comes to successfully recruiting these in-demand candidates.
Your Consumer Brand Vs. Your Employment Brand
Your consumer brand is what most of the world sees – the value you add to the patients you treat and their families; however, your employment brand is the way current and potential employees see you. Where your consumer brand is how others perceive you as a business and service provider, your employment brand is how others perceive you as an employer and a workplace.
What is it like to work at your organization? What is the culture like? Do you treat your employees well? All of these factors play into your employment brand.
Your employment brand plays a crucial role in attracting the right candidates to your open positions. According to CareerBuilder’s recent Candidate Behavior study, 91 percent of candidates believe a company’s employment brand influences their decision to apply or accept an offer. It’s time for health care recruiters and HR professionals to make their voices heard and fight to differentiate their employment brand from their organization’s consumer brand.
Differentiating Your Organization From the Competition
What does it say to potential nursing candidates when they visit a hospital’s career site and see only generic images of nurses and doctors treating patients in a sparkling clean unit? Nothing, says Keith Hadley, practice leader of employment branding at CareerBuilder.
“Health care industry candidates want to get a feel for the type of workplace culture an employer they’re considering has. How do you treat employees? What do you have to offer that the competition doesn’t?” Hadley says. If health care organizations want to stand out in the eyes of top quality candidates, they have to prove that they are different from other organizations. Their career site should be a place where candidates can get a true feel for the company, its culture and its workplace environment.
Not only is creating a strong employment brand key to attracting and engaging top talent, it also gives you more negotiating room when it comes to salary: the Candidate Behavior Study also found that 74 percent of nurses would accept a lower salary to work for a company with a strong employment brand.
Creating Your Employment Brand: Questions to Ask
Employers should take the time now to evaluate their employment brands. What does it say about your culture to potential candidates? Hadley offers the following questions to consider when thinking about how you can position your brand and make it stand out from the competition:
- What do employees love about working at your organization?
- Do you have a competitive tuition reimbursement program?
- Do you offer on-the-job training and learning and development opportunities?
- Do you recognize employees for their efforts on a regular basis?
- Do you provide wellness programs, corporate discounts, flexible scheduling or other initiatives that promote an overall work-life balance?
All of these elements can have a significant effect on a candidate’s decision to apply and accept a job offer. If candidates they’ll be getting more outside of their expected job duties, they’ll most likely make a deeper, more heartfelt decision to work for you, one that goes beyond just salary.
Ready to get 2014 started off on the right foot? Learn more about leveraging effective employment branding to improve your recruitment strategy today.