Erica Marom and Uri Ar’s method to constructing an employer model (trace: it doesn’t contain foosball tables!)
Last yr, we attended an employer branding lecture given by an professional within the subject at a distinguished Israeli tech firm. There was loads of discuss Instagram and Fb, together with numerous images of yoga lessons and comfortable hours.
We checked out one another and knew what the opposite was pondering — that’s not employer branding.
We’re Urica – Erica Marom (LinkedIn), former journalist turned startup storyteller, and Uri Ar (LinkedIn), model and expertise strategist. We each work at Aleph serving to our portfolio firms construct their manufacturers, inform their tales and construct significant experiences. With rising competitors over prime expertise, we noticed rising demand from our portfolio firms to distinguish themselves as employers. Why ought to anybody work at startup A versus startup B?
Along with Racheli Kogan, an HR professional beforehand of Fundbox, we determined to share our view of what employer branding actually means and the way it interprets to a way of constructing a significant employer model that any startup may rapidly and simply undertake.
What’s an employer model?
Employer branding is a basic course of primarily based on making use of your organization story and values to every thing you do, from hiring and firing to firm life. Your employer model is outlined by how outsiders and potential staff understand your organization as a office, and by how your staff really feel and expertise your organization and specific that to others.
Your employer model differentiates you primarily based upon your worth proposition to your staff, past the fundamental parts they’ve come to count on from any tech firm – like compensation, perks and advantages – to the issues they really care about, like impression and private growth.
It may be tempting to attempt to appeal to staff with foosball tables, recreation rooms and comfortable hours. However everybody else is already doing this, so it doesn’t even show you how to stand out, and, extra importantly, it’s unlikely to be a significant expression of your values or of your organization’s character and distinctive vibe.
Each perk, exercise and profit, each firm course of and coverage, must be seen each as a possibility and a dedication to constructing and speaking your employer model.
Whereas employer branding could also be owned by HR or advertising and marketing (ideally a three way partnership!), each worker must be made conscious of and perceive the truth that they’re a consultant of the corporate and have the chance to be an evangelist of the employer model. The perfect evangelists are true believers –so you have to be sure your Kool-Support is price consuming. 😉
How do I construct an employer model?
Model is a relationship. Branding is all about constructing relationships, setting expectations and defining your commitments. It encompasses each single factor you do as an organization, and it’s guided by your values. Whereas values can usually be thought-about clichéd fluff, in our minds your values are your dedication and your promise, your touchstone by which to measure every thing you do. Each encounter together with your model is a chance (and a problem) to specific that relationship – from how briskly your web site hundreds to your advertising and marketing copy to your product usability to the expertise of being employed by your organization.
An employer model is derived out of your overarching model and values. It’s the relationship you construct together with your staff – from the potential candidates who’re studying about and even entertaining the concept of working at your organization, to your precise staff, to those that are leaving your organization.
Earlier than embarking on an employer branding course of, it is advisable perceive who you’re as an organization and what the values are that information you – as these values can be your lighthouse for every thing you do going ahead.
When you’ve outlined your values, the following step is to look at your whole firm lifecycle purposes: hiring, onboarding, recognition/analysis, inside communications, exterior communications, tradition, welfare and termination. Then begin excited about find out how to infuse your values into each one among these purposes in an effort to construct an employer model that resonates all through day-to-day firm life:
- Hiring: The whole recruitment course of, the kind of individuals you wish to rent, the job descriptions, the way you pitch to candidates, the way you conduct job interviews and the kind of questions which are requested, candidate expertise, surveys, the way you deal with rejections, the way you select a remaining candidate, and so forth.
- Onboarding: Orientation, care bundle, what the primary day appears like, handovers, how a lot emphasis you placed on coaching vs. throwing into the deep finish, documentation/handbooks, and so forth.
- Recognition/Analysis: What you reward and worth as a corporation, the way you resolve on promotions, what behaviors you wish to encourage, who evaluates whom, find out how to conduct critiques, wage will increase, bonuses, how, if and while you acknowledge success and key staff, and so forth.
- Inside Communication: The way you talk with staff (new staff, individuals leaving, downsizing, and so forth.), how the chief crew interacts with staff, how clear you’re, the place you conduct inside messaging, inside channels of communication like Slack/e-mail, how (and if) you utilize different channels like WhatsApp, what you talk the place, communication expectations over weekend/holidays, and so forth.
- Exterior Communication: Your profession web page, firm LinkedIn web page, Glassdoor web page, job advertisements, rejection letters for candidates, PR (which forms of articles or lists you wish to be in, and which you don’t), your relationship with the media, [email protected] pages (Instagram/FB/Twitter), and so forth.
- Tradition: The way you run your organization, the way you make selections, which methodologies and processes you select, social tradition, hierarchy, firm and crew occasions, and so forth.
- Welfare: All of your perks and advantages, together with issues like trip, sick go away, maternity/paternity go away, meals, transportation and insurance coverage, fairness, private growth, and so forth.
- Termination: The way you finish a relationship with an worker, what number of probabilities you give them, are you clear, do you search for a alternative earlier than they go away or not, do you fireplace individuals across the holidays or if somebody has a tough private challenge, the way you deal with downsizing vs. lack of efficiency vs. when a employee leaves on their very own, what number of perks you give when somebody leaves, do you announce it inside the firm, suggestions, and so forth.
These are all the worker lifecycle purposes as we’ve outlined them. You probably have any others which are related or particular to your organization, be happy so as to add them. Our method to constructing an employer model is to assemble a desk through which we then cross our values with every of those totally different firm lifecycle purposes. In every sq., we outline the guiding rules of conduct in addition to sensible concepts primarily based upon every worth.
So, for instance, utilizing the worth of collaboration as outlined by one among our portfolio firms and making use of it to the lifecycle software of termination, we outlined:
“Once we are ending a relationship with an worker, it mustn’t come as a shock; we must always interact in open talks and conversations with them forward of any thought-about termination in an try and collaborate and enhance their efficiency. We also needs to supply steerage and assist each on their work and their profession path. A call to terminate also needs to be a collaborative course of with related stakeholders inside the firm. If a call is made to terminate, the worker must be clearly notified and be an energetic a part of that course of wherever potential (remaining date, kind of compensation, and so forth.). We’d by no means begin on the lookout for a alternative earlier than the worker is notified that they’re being terminated. The remainder of the staff must be knowledgeable, and they need to perceive the way it will have an effect on their work. All communication on the subject must be optimistic, grateful and respectful. On this spirit of collaboration, we’d assist that worker discover a new position within the firm, or perhaps a new job, if potential.”
This technique can and must be utilized to your whole firm lifecycle purposes, till you may have accomplished your entire matrix.
As soon as accomplished, you should have a desk filled with guiding rules and sensible concepts that you would be able to implement at your organization. You should utilize these to construct out a long-term employer branding technique that takes under consideration each the bigger, dearer initiatives in addition to tackling simple, low-hanging fruit.
We suggest that you just prioritize these tasks primarily based on impression versus price and energy – how a lot impression an concept could have on present and potential worker notion versus how a lot cash, time and assets it requires.
For an employer model to succeed, it must be handled identical to some other challenge at your organization. It requires a technique, funds and buy-in from management and administration. It requires an proprietor and a devoted crew. These efforts must be communicated clearly all through the corporate so that everybody will get on board.
This matrix is only the start. Each encounter inside the firm is a chance to keep up or strengthen your employer model. The principle concept going ahead is to easily be considerate about each single interplay till it turns into second nature. Taking a minute earlier than you share a social publish, conduct an interview or create a brand new coverage to make sure they’re aligned together with your values will already put you forward of the sport. It’s not nearly profiting from alternatives; it’s additionally about not damaging your employer model by neglect or by doing the unsuitable factor.
When you’ve adopted an overarching technique on your employer model, you will want to adapt it to totally different individuals and diverse interactions. Whereas the identical firm rules and values apply to everybody, what impression means and what private growth means fluctuate primarily based on position, and it’s essential to grasp what drives them. Bear in mind the persona of whom you’re interacting with; entrepreneurs, for instance, care about various things from builders. Speaking collaboration by way of an organization hackathon could also be extra related to builders, whereas for entrepreneurs, collaboration could possibly be about model and efficiency entrepreneurs working collectively as a crew.
Whereas there are many firms nonetheless attempting to construct an employer model by speaking about comfortable hours and foosball tables, there are some manufacturers who’re getting it proper. Through the Covid pandemic, for instance, Lemonade shared a weblog written by the CEO Daniel Schreiber calling for each firm to ask each worker to get vaccinated. Company duty, he mentioned, can transfer the needle and make a distinction. As an authorized B-Corp, Lemonade is all about social impression and duty; they donate further earnings to charities of their customers’ alternative, and consider that doing effectively and doing proper will not be mutually unique. This weblog, nevertheless controversial – and even as a result of it’s controversial – establishes Lemonade’s employer model in a transparent and differentiated approach and attracts staff that align with their values. It may not be for everybody – however that’s the purpose.
In the end, when you take one factor away from this weblog about find out how to construct a compelling employer model, the trick is don’t be lazy. Don’t simply do what everybody else is doing. For those who let your model story and values information you and are prepared to take a position only a bit extra, you possibly can construct a significant employer model and lasting relationships together with your staff. We lately had a portfolio firm efficiently recruit a senior government (away on sabbatical!) primarily based on their distinctive set of values – so when you construct it, they may come.
Our 10 Commandments of Employer Branding:
- Leverage your EVP (Worker Worth Proposition). Extract out of your values what your candidates and staff truly care about and what’s distinctive to you as an organization. What declare are you able to make – that none of your opponents could make – that your staff care about?
- Talk with staff. Continuously pay attention to your viewers. What brings staff to your organization and what is going to maintain them at your organization? Pay attention. One thing that appears trivial to you possibly can be a deal-breaker for another person.
- Arm your staff. Your staff are your greatest ambassadors and evangelists. Give them the instruments, the platform and the permission to speak about their experiences.
- Measure what you possibly can. Measuring your work can rally the administration to assist and amplify it in addition to show you how to enhance your output.
- Take it critically. Construct a technique and a funds for employer branding; this can be a challenge like some other at your group.
- Focus. Don’t open one million channels and unfold your self skinny attempting to handle all of them. Open the channels that you just resolve are related for you and your viewers and give attention to optimizing these. Keep away from posting for the sake of posting; you possibly can hurt your status with low-quality content material or by being off-brand.
- Thoughts your picture. PR must be micromanaged, not simply managed. There may be such a factor as unhealthy PR, and also you wish to be sure each article or occasion you take part in is aligned together with your values.
- Management your on-line presence. Rigorously handle your presence on exterior platforms like LinkedIn and Glassdoor.
- Teamwork. A great employer branding technique is constructed by advertising and marketing and HR working collectively. Ensure everyone seems to be aligned.
- Reside your values. Actually – and don’t be hypocritical about them. Folks count on you to face by your values.
This weblog is predicated on a workshop given by Uri Ar and Erica Marom to Aleph portfolio firms in June 2021. We’d love to listen to from you, attain out at [email protected] or [email protected]