Like any other facets of the business world, the global labor market has also undergone unprecedented transitions during the COVID-19 pandemic.
While it has triggered mass layoffs & furloughs in certain industries like travel and hospitality, others like health care, cybersecurity, and e-commerce are ramping up their hiring .
Regardless of the strategies adopted by businesses to survive this crisis, how they treat their new-hires as well as existing employees during this critical time will have long lasting effect on the company’s reputation as a brand.
Employer branding is a company’s ability to differentiate and promote its identity to a defined group of candidates that they are interested in hiring.
In this competitive labor market, it is important for an organization to go beyond their Employee Value Propositions to attract, recruit, and retain talent.
A LinkedIn research suggests that companies with a positive employer brand can attract 41% of employees without any pay hikes.
Employer branding involves a lot of time-consuming practices, followed with utmost consistency, and coherence to generate positive results.
However, in these unforeseen circumstances, it is difficult for the companies to stick on to the proposed values and promises to the employees. On the other hand, employers cannot completely ignore the process as it will lead to the deterioration of the existing brand. So, companies are now altering approaches and formulating new branding .
Employer Branding: Tailor-made Strategies that Worked
- Empathetic approach of leaders: Brian Chesky, CEO of Airbnb, sent a personal note to the employees to address the impending layoff, in a compassionate tone, emphasizing that the goal is to eliminate positions, not people. He also provided clarity and reassurance on how Airbnb will support the laid-off employees.
- Emphasize on COVID-friendly benefits: Amazon recently announced a special one-time Thank You bonus totaling over $500 million for all front-line employees and partners who were with the company throughout the month of June. They are also providing two weeks of paid time off to those who are diagnosed with COVID-19.
- Social media activity: Recent LinkedIn data shows that Coronavirus-related posts are getting more engagement than other posts – especially those focusing on how companies are helping.
- Diversity and inclusion efforts: In light of the Black Lives Matter protests, a recent survey by The Manifest found that 70% of jobseekers value their potential employers’ commitment for diversity and inclusion.
- Flexible working arrangements: Japanese technology firm Fujitsu introduced “Work-Life Shift” program allowing its 80,000 workers to choose their work timings according to the contents of their work, business roles, and lifestyle during remote working.
- Active employee engagement programs: Virtual happy hours have been a trending engagement activity in large conglomerates like Zappos, wherein the team members celebrate their ‘Friday night Zoom Drinks’.
In times of crisis, employees need reassurance that their company values their contribution, while the employers need to attract and retain those who can handhold them for optimal productivity. Thus, it is of paramount importance for organizations to give extra focus to their branding strategies.
Draup for Talent enables HR leaders and Hiring Strategists to dive deep into various trends in hiring and engagement by providing updates on the key signals or events that take place within the industry.
Based on employee reviews, it also provides unique propositions such as organizational strengths, that can boost an individual’s morale and organizational challenges that may contribute towards their withdrawal from the organization.