Employer Branding is an organizational initiative that differentiates a company from their competitors by highlighting the many benefits of working there. It consists of showcasing a company’s culture, executing a winning recruitment process, and managing a company’s employer reputation online and offline.
The ROI of employer branding
Building a powerful employer brand may seem like another expensive and time-consuming initiative. But here’s the thing, you can’t afford not to invest time into employer branding. Talent recruitment is costly — on average, it takes 42 days plus $4,129 to make a hire. There’s a lot of pressure to make the investment count, from making sure the job opening gets in front of the right talent to ensuring a hire is a right fit for your company.
The purpose and power of Mission, Vision, and Core Values
Building a powerful employer brand doesn’t have to be a scary thing. The key is to define your employer brand from the inside out. That means defining your company’s mission, vision, and core values — a company’s MVV.
A mission and vision statement is the roadmap that summarizes your company’s existence, long-term goals and how it's going to achieve them, while a set of core values can empower your team. In a Gallup study, only 41% of employees (randomly selected from a sample of 3,000 employers) felt that they knew what their company stands for. When employees don’t know why they show up every day, beyond a paycheck, it can do a number on productivity.
Ergoseal, an industry-leading mechanical seal provider, underwent two acquisitions which led to rapid growth. Growth leads to change, so it was important that their entire team was on board with where the company was headed. Led by President Tom Hilaris, Ergoseal’s leadership team worked alongside their employees to define their MVV. Once established, they designed office signage to display the mission, vision, and values on the wall so it was always on top of mind.
With better alignment amongst the team, the company was able to better collaborate on more complex business challenges like aligning sales with marketing.
How to define your mission and vision statements
To define your MVV, first, start with creating a strong mission statement and vision statement. Either grab a pen and paper and brainstorm solo or grab your leadership team and a whiteboard. The best way to get to your true mission and vision is to answer a series of questions that will extract pieces of your company’s story. Why it exists, what we do, how we do it, who we do it for, and so forth.
Here are twenty questions to get started: Red Caffeine’s 20 Questions to Ask About Your Brand
Then, look for patterns. Are you a company that exists to help others? A company that wants to lead the industry? Or even a company that strives to expand globally?
Find the statements that ring true, and narrow them down. Then identify statements, words, and phrases that summarize why you exist (your mission) and where you hope to go (your vision).
How to brainstorm core values that provoke action
A lighting manufacturer with a great company culture wanted to define core values that align with the company’s business goals. They also wanted them to ring true. To do so, the leadership team ordered pizza for their entire team and brainstormed their set of core values together.
Core values are designed to align your team with your company’s goals. But they don’t mean a thing if the team doesn’t feel connected with them. That’s why it’s always beneficial to brainstorm a set of core values with your team. Doing so will ensure your team feels like they’ve been heard. They’ll also stand behind something they feel they helped define.
You’ll want to tackle the brainstorming session similar to how you did with defining your mission and vision. Here are some questions to ask your team:
- Why are we the team to get the job done?
- Why do you show up every day?
- How would you describe working here?
- Collectively, what do we believe in?
- What do you feel is expected out of you every day?
- How would you describe working here to a friend?
- What are some of our work norms?
Once you have your MVV defined, frame it and put it on the wall so the entire team can see! Add it to job descriptions, post it on Glassdoor, and add it to employee and training on boarding documents. Be sure it’s seen regularly so it’s top of mind.
"Construction" By vonderauvisuals (CC BY-NC-ND 2.0)