Thursday 26 May 2016,

Professional Services is the fifth most attractive (UK) industry to work in according to recent Randstad research. But that in itself indicates a high level of competitive pressure (from both within and outside your sector) on firms to attract and retain the best talent. The Big 4 are increasing recruitment efforts and firms of all sizes are increasing the sophistication of and investment in their employer brand.

At the PM forum event in May we were joined by Susannah Freedman, Director and Head of Brand, and Fiona Burnett, Senior Brand Consultant of Emperor who delivered a great session on employer brand. It was a very insightful session with some great examples and one of the key messages at the beginning which set the scene nicely was: “customers will never love a company until the employees love it first” Simon Sinek.

Susannah and Fiona then went on to give us hints and tips on the following:

What is an employer brand?

Your employer brand is your ‘competitive cultural advantage’ - providing strategic differentiation AND optimised operational efficiency and performance. It enables you to understand the unique attributes that characterise your culture, employee experience, and express it consistently and inspiringly throughout your candidate journey, streamlining onboarding and driving employee engagement.

Why invest in your employer brand?

When your business is your people - the relationships they build and the service experience they deliver - managing your employer brand is the catalyst for future success in your firm. It delivers significant measurable benefit to recruitment, retention, onboarding, engagement, and ultimately impacts on your bottom line.

Why now?

Top candidates and talented employees expect more. Global trends indicate that new generations make career decisions in a more holistic way; considering purpose, culture and ethics, opportunity to influence, access to leadership, flexibility, and work-life balance. Expectations are set by high profile people-focused brands and candidates can be drawn to these over traditional professional pathways.

How do you define or refine your employer brand?

1. Ask and listen. Build an authentic insights platform to reflect real employee experiences and the ambition of leadership

2. Articulate with personality. Find the words to bring your tone of voice to life for an employee audience through your EVP narrative, values, employer profile and messaging

3. Inspire interaction. Define your communications strategy and tactics to grow visibility, understanding, dialogue and the exchange of experiences.

4. Equip & empower. Activate your employee community, empower through cascade presentations, toolkits and engagement sessions.

Fiona Burnett, Senior Brand Consultant,