Or the fact that 75% of jobseekers research employers’ reputation before deciding whether to apply.
Or even more significant, the well-known CR Magazine finding that 69% of candidates would actively refuse a jobwith a company with a bad reputation. Even if they were unemployed.
(Think about that for a moment. The stress and strain of being unemployed, of having bills to pay. Of dwindling self-esteem. And still the majority of people would rather that than work for a company with a poor reputation. That’s damning.)
Then consider Deloitte’s discoveries, that nearly 90% of organizations cite culture and engagement as a crucial challenge while two thirds are actively updating their engagement and retention strategies.
A strong employer brand means you value, nurture, empower and inspire your people. Which means they’re more engaged and more productive, as well as becoming employer brand ambassadors, helping you recruit more, better people. (People like this, for example)
It’s a well-known cycle: we’re preaching to the converted, aren't we?
But it’s not the end of the story.
Employer brand doesn't only matter for HR.
The world today has fundamentally changed, and previously solid boundaries between things have broken down. Traditional workplace dichotomies have dissolved – think work/life, home/office, boss/friend, employee/customer.
In large part, that’s because the Internet has democratized information and given your Average Joe a platform he never had before. Which has reduced the distance between organizations and the people they serve – both employees and customers.
Businesses are more accessible than ever – and much more accountable.
Which shifts the conversation about employer brand.
Twenty years ago, you treat John badly. His morale suffers, which impacts performance and ultimately he leaves. Sure, he tells Jane, who tells Joe, who tells Jerry, but it’s mostly the end of it.
Today, you treat John badly. His morale suffers, which impacts performance and ultimately he leaves. And he tells Jane, who tells Joe, who tells Jerry – who tells his 350,000 Twitter followers, who lead a brand boycott. And suddenly you’ll all over the news and facing legal proceedings – like IBM.
You can see, today treating your employees badly isn’t just an employer brand thing. It’s a brand thing. A corporate reputation thing.
And that, is a profit thing.
Because treating employees well is the most important way businesses build trust amongst consumers, Edelman report. So treating employees badly is the quickest way to lose that trust.
Which matters, because with trust comes custom. As Edelman also find, nearly two thirds of consumers pointblank refuse to buy from companies they don’t trust. Two thirds of all consumers, note. Not just millennial consumers.
Which means this.
Employer brand is indistinguishable from brand. How you treat your employees defines how your customers treat you.
Employer brand. Because customers care.
Treating your people well isn’t just some millennial recruitment strategy. It’s a business strategy. Organizations with a strong employer brand will prove to have a stronger commercial brand, to better weather competitive storms and reach new heights of profitability.
HR leaders must drive this agenda to become true business leaders.