Building your brand and developing an Employee Value Proposition


Finding and keeping the talent your organisation needs to succeed has always been a challenge. A recent CBI survey said that 56% of organisations cannot fill the jobs that they currently have available, and 80% of CEOs said that “Talent” was their single biggest issue, more important than concerns about the economy or their customers.

Having a comprehensive and coherent Employee Value Proposition (EVP) can be a fundamental plank of your talent strategy, drawing together your employer brand, your compensation and benefits strategy as well as being an increasingly important statement of your culture and values. A well written EVP provides the basis on which you can build your roadmap to attracting and retaining talent in a tightening market.

An EVP isn’t just about attracting people to your organisation though, it also holds you to account with your current workforce. There’s nothing like the hollow claims of an over exaggerated EVP praising the virtues of your workplace, that bears no relation to the reality of working for you, to have the opposite effect on your retention. Expectation must match reality, even if we ‘polish it up a bit’! It’s a way of ensuring your managers understand “the way we do things around here” and can contribute to their development. Managers play a vitally important role in creating the cultural reality, away from the lofty ideals of the HR and marketing teams. Without your managers reflecting your culture and values in their day-to-day interactions with your teams and customers, your EVP becomes a pointless exercise.

Increasingly, organisations are identifying and creating partnerships to improve the effectiveness of their talent strategy through recruitment process outsourcing (RPO), RPO is when a company transfers all or part of its permanent recruitment to an external provider, this could be working with  master and neutral vendors and recruitment businesses, establishing partnerships with Higher Education and Further Education, as well as apprenticeship providers. An EVP will strengthen your partners understanding of your organisation and how they can best work with you. When working in the talent marketplace for you, on the phone, in their advertising, and on social media, it’s imperative that they reflect your values. Your partners also need to comprehensively understand what they’ve got to work with. How far can they go to accommodate a flexible working request, can you meet the career aspirations of the best candidate, will you look at transferrable skills to widen the pool of candidate by seeking experience gained in other markets or industries? All of this can come from your EVP – it’s the public statement of who you really are.

Other considerations, taken from the REC’s (Recruitment and Employment Confederation) report: Ready Willing and Able: Can the UK Labour Force meet Demand after Brexit, provide further food for thought:

  1. Focus on the candidate experience for applicants who are less confident in applying for roles.
  2. Re-assess what level of prior experience is essential or desirable for a given role.
  3. Consider whether different working patterns are suitable for the roles being advertised.
  4. Make clear in job adverts any realistic routes for progression within roles.
  5. Work as an individual company, in collaboration with other companies, and through trade associations and industry organisations to myth-bust about your industry.
  6. Allow those who have re-entered the labour market after a lengthy period of unemployment or economic inactivity more time to bed in and adapt to the demands of their role.
  7. Take guidance from recruiters and not-for-profit organisations on realistic expectations and suitable roles for new employees from excluded groups.

Join us at our roundtable in September to connect with HR colleagues across the sector and learn more [link to website].

Heather Salway is Group HR Director for nGAGE Specialist Recruitment.