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  • Writer's pictureBrad Weinbrum

Power up your brand to win talent

Struggling to fill important empty roles? You’re not alone. With approximately 15.7 million jobs or one in eight positions open in the United States, you are in stiff competition to fill them. For companies everywhere, the struggle to attract and retain talent is real.

Executives are tasked to unlock significant growth during a time of inflation, technology innovation, new workforce demands and changing consumer behaviors. The price for great talent is high, but the cost of not having committed, high performing talent is higher.

Want to power up your ability to attract GREAT talent? Start with these two key areas:

Create a strong EVP (Employee Value Proposition). Today this moves beyond simply defining the rewards and benefits the employee will receive for their performance. It makes clear the total benefit and value an employee will receive for doing a respectable job which could include things like flexible hours, remote and/or hybrid work environment, training, upskilling, and continuing education, KPI-related bonuses, mentorship, and a clear pathway to career advancement. While salary is important, research shows repeatedly that up to 90% of talent would accept less pay for a powerful sense of purpose, meaning and balance in their work. Winning brands have invested in re-defining their purpose and passion and have activated plans to live up to their words. The question is no longer “Why do we need an EVP”, but rather “How much are we willing to risk by not having a competitive EVP.”

Create and activate a strong Employer Brand. The difference may feel subtle, but it is significant. Your company or “employer” brand is what your organization is known for. Beyond the products or services that you provide, it is the reputation and reflection of how your customers and employees about feel about your company. It is inclusive of your values, your culture, your purpose and passion, and your demonstrable commitment to them all. It is “the thing” that sets you apart from your competition and substantiates your relevancy to customers and employees alike. It is therefore only sensible that there should be a direct and intentional correlation from your Company Brand to your value proposition for customers, investors, business partners and employees alike. In today’s highly competitive market- your Company Brand gives customer and employees a reason to work with and stay with you. As with a strong EVP, an authentic Company Brand transcends the power of basic economics (like sales transactions or salaries) to unleash a deeper sense of attraction and loyalty to your company. Acknowledging a brand strategy requires investment, we cannot rule out the role of positive economics. The simplest way to consider “why” investing is critical from a financial perspective is this: Higher employee and customer retention rates + Reduced talent & customer acquisition costs = Higher EBITDA.

Time is of the essence.

Yes, re-invigorating your company brand and an authentic, differentiated employee value proposition takes time, collaborative thought, and investment. Companies doing this today, are the same ones leading in growth and customer engagement. As with most challenges, acknowledging the problem exists is the first step. The subsequent steps involve honest conversations about internal resources, bandwidth, and capabilities to determine what, if any, external support may be appropriate to create and activate the right strategic solution for your company.

According to Korn Ferry estimates, by 2030, the global talent shortage could reach 85.2 million people (roughly the population of Germany), resulting in the loss of trillions of dollars in economic opportunity for companies. The industries projected to be most affected are what labor analysts call “knowledge-intensive” industries such as financial services, technology, media, telecommunications, and manufacturing.

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