While marketing, human resources, and job recruitment play different roles, their overall goals are the same. Attract and keep employees and consumers, so you can grow your business.

Competition for quality talent is stiff. The job market is tight. Unemployment is hovering at 4%, the lowest its been in years. In fact, the United States is currently enjoying “full employment,” as defined by the Federal Reserve. Forbes predicts that wages will increase to encourage comfortable employees to job-hop.

All of this is good news for job-seekers, but poses a real challenge for job recruitment. Posting on social channels and job boards will not be enough to find qualified candidates. As competition for talent increases, strategic companies are developing employment branding strategies to stand out from the crowd.

What Is Employment Branding?

Employment branding is an active, focused effort to define the market’s perception of what it is like to work at your company. It drives the kinds of candidates you attract.

A good employment branding strategy saves you time by cutting back on the number of unqualified or undesired applicants. It strengthens your company image and positions your company as a great place to work. It spells out your value proposition to applicants.

Sounds good, right?

Getting there isn’t easy. Employment branding requires collaboration. You have to tear down department silos. Managers and directors of marketing and human resources must work together towards a strategic goal. Unfortunately, any disruption in leadership or culture is going to be, well, disruptive. But the results are worth the efforts for your job recruitment process and your long-term growth.

How to Build an Employment Brand

All businesses need recruiting, human resources, and marketing to succeed and grow. These functions sculpt the business, increase profitability, and encourage growth. Your marketing team and your human resources department should keep the following in mind as they create your employment brand.

Have a marketing mindset

Develop applicant personas. You must understand the wants and needs of your potential employees so you can develop targeted employee value propositions. Rework your job descriptions so they appeal to individuals who have varying skill sets. We’re no longer in the age of the one-size-fits-all career page. Company details like culture, perks, work-life balance, and telecommuting options should be included (and promoted) in your job descriptions and company career pages.

Set a goal

What are you trying to accomplish with your employment branding strategy? Well-defined goals with trackable KPIs are needed to measure success. Don’t just try something and hope for the best. Be intentional with your marketing efforts.

Communicate effectively

Job descriptions, career site pages, and social media messages should be written with employment brand goals in mind. Broad, general messaging will attract resumes from every kind of applicant, including the less serious ones. Be specific in your job descriptions, and tailor them to match your employee personas. This will attract quality candidates who are right for your company, which in turn increases employee retention.

Unleash your marketing team

Traditional marketing channels are not off-limits. Get creative and use digital channels to support your brand. Videos showcasing company culture will appeal to viewers. Make sure you respond to reviews on forums like Yelp, Glassdoor, and Google. Remember, marketing tactics apply to candidates as well as potential customers.

Stay organized

If you haven’t invested in an applicant tracking system to optimize your job recruitment, now is the time. A good employment branding strategy will increase the number of applications you receive. An ATS is crucial for managing information, notes, and messages.

Applicant tracking systems won’t just keep you organized. You can use your system to automatically respond to resumes and increase the efficiency of the application process. Job candidates will remember your company as organized, professional, courteous, and responsive. In turn, this will enhance your employment brand reputation.

Measure and analyze

Your applicant tracking system can run and analyze reports on your efforts so you can put data insights into action. Are you getting a lot of unqualified applications? Perhaps your messaging isn’t specific enough, or you aren’t asking the right pre-screening questions. Your applicant tracking system can help you institute broad changes in moments.

Your employment brand should let people know that your company is a great place to work. Employment branding doesn’t happen at once. It requires buy-in and collaboration from many departments. If you pull together, you can attract a winning workforce.