Why Employer Branding is Key in Hiring (and Retaining) Top Talent

Why Employer Branding is Key in Hiring (and Retaining) Top Talent

With competition for talent at its highest in decades, an employer brand is essential to standing out to potential candidates, and retaining your top performers, in more ways than you might think. An effective employer brand spans to not only the way your employees feel, but how they speak to others about your organization.

“By incorporating an intentional employer branding strategy, organizations can be proactive rather than reactive in their hiring efforts,” Nicole Lucas, Brand Communications Manager at Hunter International, explains. “An employer brand helps establish understanding and credibility with candidates who have a number of different career options at their fingertips. Organizations that are making a strategic effort in this area will undoubtedly see improvements in their talent and retention numbers versus their peers.”

Below, we’ve identified the ways in which an employer brand is essential in hiring and retaining top talent.

1. Brand Recognition and Awareness

Just as you are likely to buy products from brands you recognize in the store, candidates are more likely to apply to companies that are familiar to them. In fact, a study by Glassdoor found that 75% of hiring decision-makers say it’s easier to attract top talent when candidates know about the organization. But what if you don’t have the same resources that some of the world’s most recognizable brands do? By making a conscious employer branding effort, your organization can become well-known to job seekers in your geographies and industry. Lean into your company’s communities by showcasing your involvements and thought-leadership.

Beyond increasing recognition for your organization, a solid employer brand also helps demonstrate to candidates what is like to work day-to-day at your company. Candidates will expect to have an understanding of the company culture and insights into employee engagement when beginning the application process at your company. Make sure that your organization’s mission and values are clear and defined in your online presence and think about the ways you can creatively display these essential parts of your brand to potential candidates.

2. Quality Hires and Lower Recruitment Costs

A good way to get others in your organization on board with making a strategic employer branding effort is pointing out the areas in which it can help improve key performance indicators such as candidate quality and decreased recruitment costs. Data collected by LinkedIn found that businesses with a strong employer brand had a 43% decrease in cost per hire and 50% more qualified applicants to their roles. Not only does this help with the costly expenses of job boards, it also saves your hiring team time and resources.

With amplified awareness of your employer brand and an increase in applies to your open roles, it is safe to assume those who are applying already will know, and be interested in, your company’s mission and values. In addition to well-informed candidates, an effective employer brand should also lead to candidates being more interested in your roles and, hopefully, an increase in accepted offers.

3. Retention and Referrals

A 2021 study by CareerArc found that retaining their current workforce was the number one concern for 49% of employers. With employee resignations spiking, retaining employees is more important than ever. A solid employer brand can positively influence retention in a number of ways. By creating a mission-driven brand that your employees can actively participate in, you can create a team-like atmosphere, where everyone plays a part. For example, featuring employee success stories and highlighting the faces behind your organization allows you to recognize employees publicly, while showcasing your culture.

When your employees feel like they are a part of the brand, they are likely to advocate on behalf of your brand. Referrals from current employees can bring in high-quality hires at little cost and time to the organization. With referrals boasting a 13% higher retention rate than job board hires, an employer brand should be a key focus for your organization’s hiring efforts.


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