Emanuel Schmid, Junior Consultant
The ongoing COVID 19 pandemic is putting many companies' employer brand to the test. What's more, the way companies communicate with their employees, applicants and the public during an extraordinary time like this can influence the employer brand in the long term. How can companies present themselves as attractive employers today and tomorrow and positively differentiate themselves from other competitors in the labor market?
COVID-friendly employer branding
How you currently handle the impact of the coronavirus on your company and employees will have a lasting impact on your employer brand. Brian Kropp, vice president of Gartner, tweeted on March 24, 2020:
«The decisions that companies make across the next five months will impact the employees and candidates will think about them for the next five years. How will your company answer this question from a candidate a year from now: ‹how did you treat your employees during COVID 19?›.»
So what can you do to successfully manage your company's employer brand in these challenging times? No matter what challenges your company is currently facing, here are six approaches to formulate a strategy:
Adjust your hiring process and update your career site. Many of your potential candidates feel uncertain in times of crisis. Let candidates know how the hiring process will go from interview to hire.
Invest your resources in social media communications. Consider allocating resources to social media communications to communicate and make visible lived values. In doing so, adjust your tone of voice and visual design accordingly.
Put people at the center. Show how you support your employees, applicants and customers. Give back to your community. Talk about people, not numbers and business.
Show leadership. In times of uncertainty, people need reassurance that your leadership is capable of handling the crisis. Lead with confidence and decisiveness, but also with empathy.
Communicate proactively, consistently and considerately. Be careful not to sound too formal or cold. Tell stories and don't be afraid to be authentic, empathetic and personal.
Be honest and transparent. Times of crisis require straightforward, open and sincere communication that leaves no room for false assumptions or even fear and panic. Full transparency will say a lot about you as an employer, about your leadership style, and about how you support your employees.
There is no magic formula for how to conduct yourself in uncertain or unprecedented times like these. What we can offer, however, is a blueprint for how you can stand out as an attractive employer now and in the future. Don't hesitate to get in touch with our team at int/ext Communications. Our experienced communications experts will be happy to advise you.