Your EVP matters more now than ever before
Think back to 2019; a pre-pandemic world. We thought we understood the world of recruitment. It was comfortable. Predictable. We thought we knew what we wanted as employers. We thought candidates knew what they wanted too. We thought nothing could ever change. We thought wrong.
Over the last eight months, our priorities have changed, as have those of our employees.
What candidates look for in their employer, and the factors they consider when looking for a new role are dramatically different due to COVID-19, as are the ways many businesses operate. We won’t see a return to ‘normal’ any time soon. If ever.
For employers, a crisis like this is a test of values, principles and behaviours. It’s a time to ensure that your EVP is not only robust, but continues to deliver on what it promises during the most challenging of times.
A successful EVP is the key thing that attracts, engages and retains talent for a business. It helps employees judge what they can achieve by working with an employer and further develop an emotional bond with their goals. It’s a fundamental part of your employer brand, but it must mirror and adapt to shifts in societal attitudes. And when you consider that we’re in the midst of the most significant workplace reinvention for generations, can you really afford to risk falling behind your competitors?
Our once-predictable recruitment landscape has now changed to put candidates at the centre. Many have experienced a vastly different way of working, which has led to new perspectives on some aspects of working life that they may never have considered before.
So, while you’re working to adapt to a variety of challenges and changes, you also need to think about adapting your talent proposition while you’re at it.
And being the super friendly employer branding agency that we are, we’ve outlined some of the key areas you should be revisiting in relation to your EVP...just to get you started!
The culture of your organisation is shaped through the values and behaviour of your leadership team, and reflected in the attitude of your people as a result. This directly influences your EVP.
Candidates want to know that their potential leaders recognise the changes that their workforce has been and is going through. They must lead with compassion, empathy and clarity. They must be confident and decisive. They must be open and honest in order to encourage openness and honesty throughout the organisation.
Not only is a culture one of the biggest factors in candidate attraction, it’s also the primary driver of employee retention. Organisations across the country have a unique opportunity, right now, to determine what their culture can and should be going forward.
Now is the time to pause and reflect. It’s time to restore cohesion within your team. To refresh your strategic narrative; why you exist, what you do and who you are. To relay those messages, and rally your team around your vision. And to reinforce your brand story at every stage of the recruitment lifecycle.
The biggest change brought about by the pandemic has been the loss of the office environment. Pre-coronavirus, offices were a critical element of the talent proposition. But now, without a physical space to entice prospective candidates, employers need to meet talent expectations in new ways.
Flexible working is the new normal. Employers need to ensure they have a flexible working policy in place that accommodates those who choose to mould their working lives around their home lives, whether that’s working from home or outside of traditional office hours.
After months working from home, many of those in isolation, employees will value opportunities to feel connected with their team, while candidates will want to know how they can build genuine relationships with new colleagues.
Business leaders need to invest in new ways to foster and support teamwork, collaboration and relationship building within their organisation - they are critical elements of an EVP, and real emotional factors in both future job searches and the retention of current employees.
Friday drinks, free snacks, office gyms, social events - just a handful of the office perks offered by organisations in a bid to position themselves as the best employer out there. COVID-19 has taken them all out of consideration.
Benefits like these have always been an important part of the employee proposition, so businesses now need to find new ways to deliver them. Swap the office gym for virtual exercise classes. Replace a fully-stocked fridge with a home delivery snack box. Trade office movie nights by covering the cost of a streaming subscription. There are a whole host of ways to offer perks to a remote workforce.
An EVP is never static - it should evolve as your organisation evolves. This pandemic has given us all the opportunity to get back to the basics, and reflect and refocus on what is important to both current employees and potential candidates.
Our once-predictable recruitment landscape has now changed to put candidates at the centre.