Picture this. You’re at a Gourmerican burger joint chomping a cheeseburger, when an outspoken vegan friend starts preaching that you’re killing the planet. Last week, that same vegan downed a pricey glass of pinot before their flight to a far-flung destination, armed with their strongest mossie repellant and first aid kit. Anything amiss?
Today’s job candidates are more proactively engaged in learning about an employer’s brand or employer value proposition than ever before, a new report claims.
Brand Detectives: The New generation of Global Candidates, a report released by recruitment outsourcing provider, ManpowerGroup Solutions, revealed half of Australian job seekers believe an employer’s brand and reputation is more important today than it was five years ago, with millennials proving the most brand-driven candidates.
Surveying 4500 global job seekers from influential employment markets, including more than 750 Australians, the report found there’s a re-balancing of power between employers and individuals, with candidates better placed to accurately detect a company’s internal culture, core values and level of authenticity.
“With factors such as compensation and type of work becoming more standardised across companies, job seekers are looking at employer brand and reputation as a key differentiator that can help distinguish one from another,” ManpowerGroupSolutions A/NZ general manager, Sue Howse, said.
One in five of Australians surveyed identified themselves as being brand-driven, and millennials (25-34 years of age) were the most likely group to be motivated by brand. There was also showed a strong link between being brand-driven and valuing corporate social responsibility initiatives.
According to the report, brand-driven candidates in Australia are 8 per cent more likely than non-brand driven candidates to actively source company brand information prior to an interview, whether that be through an in-house recruiter, hiring manager or using technology or social media. While digital mediums such as company websites, employer review sites and social media are key information sources for brand-driven candidates, human interaction plays a crucial role in their information gathering process the report found.
“Increased transparency and greater access to information is better enabling millennials to gauge an organisation’s brand and culture more quickly and more thoroughly than ever before,” Howse said. “If organisations aren’t proactively engaging with individuals in a positive way via various channels, candidates will make their own assumptions and decisions based on the information they do have.”
The report also showed more than eight in 10 Australian respondents feel employer-employee trust is the most important aspect of company brand, which Howse said allows employees to be more confident in being brand ambassadors.
“Trust and reputation is built on what an organisation says it does, versus what it actually does,” she said. “Encouraging and enabling an environment that allows employees to be positioned as company brand ambassador is vital to building a culture of mutual trust. Further, employers must recognise that employees today want to embrace the concept of “one life” – one that blends work and home life - hence remaining flexible and agile is vital to building mutual trust.”
Howse warned against traditional job ads and encouraged companies serious about remaining competitive to attract talent by actively telling the brand story.
“The practice of publishing job ads and waiting for individuals to apply is archaic,” she claimed. “Employers must tap into current employees – being the most credible and influential sources of information for candidates and potential new hires - to actively tell the brand’s story and live its culture both in real life and through social media platforms.
“Those who choose not to utilise these important resources, or fail to recognise their direct impact on a company’s brand, risk being left behind.”