Why is it important to communicate value (and your values) to potential and existing employees?
Put very simply, consistently communicating the beliefs of the business and the intrinsic value of working there, is the most efficient way of attracting the right candidates and retaining employees that are the best fit.
Job seekers are becoming more and more engaged in the values of businesses, aiming to work for organisations that closely align with their own values. Indeed, Glassdoor’s Mission and Culture Survey from 2019 found that 79% of job seekers surveyed consider the mission and purpose of businesses they were looking to join to be a priority for them.
Whether it has been consciously articulated or not, all companies have an Employee Value Proposition (EVP) visible to prospective candidates and existing employees. Be it through a mission statement or marketing efforts; or via job adverts, client wins, or products produced. A company’s values and beliefs are communicated in all aspects of how it interacts with the world, community and industry.
Not recognising the need to take a step back to identify and articulate your EVP and business values, risks losing valuable team members, attracting the wrong type of talent to your business and potentially not attracting any talent at all.
How do businesses know what to communicate?
Your EVP articulates the value and employee gains from working in the organisation.
Although traditionally, ‘value’ has been seen very much as a financial framework, remuneration is just one aspect of the value a business can offer its employees. There are five key areas of value that EVPs can communicate:
- Opportunity: What is the company’s learning, development and career pathing strategy?
- People: Will the employee connect with their co-workers, manager and can they see themselves working within the business? Is there confidence in the senior management?
- Organisation and values: Is the company socially responsible? Does the employee connect to the causes the business promotes and are the products or services from the company those the potential employee places value in?
- Work: Will the role and a position here facilitate a work-life balance?
- Rewards: What sort of compensation is on offer? What is the salary, the health and wellbeing benefits package and how much paid time-off is included?
Identifying these benefits, as well as bringing to life your values and mission as a business, enables a full articulation of your EVP for both existing and prospective talent.
Often senior teams intrinsically understand what value working for the business brings individuals. It is the articulation of that value, into a robust, structured and communicable EVP that enables businesses to know what to communicate.
Once there is a greater understanding of what the business wants to communicate, EVPs can then be drop fed throughout all messaging pillars of a business in an aspirational and tangible way.
Communicating an EVP to attract talent
A business needs to be able to answer the question - why should a highly talented person choose to work with us instead of a competitor?
The messaging might be compelling, the benefits and rewards packages exciting and opportunities for new starters fulsome, but these benefits may not be reaching the type of talent perfect for the business.
The most common reason for this is inconsistency.
For example, if you clearly communicate your values via a job advertisement, but these values are not backed up in peer reviews or on your website, this causes inconsistencies that confuse and put off potential talent.
This inconsistency of message can be traced back to an inconsistent internal communications strategy. For example, if the HR team holds one set of beliefs about a business, but the marketing team holds another - messaging across their outputs will always be inconsistent and confusing to the external reader.
Therefore, to ensure effective communication externally, businesses need to ensure their internal comms are as robust as possible to ensure all aspects of the business are bought into and are aligned to the bigger picture of the EVP.
Communicating an EVP to retain talent
Having an internal communications plan that authentically engages employees across the board is a business requirement key to the performance of the business. Trying to communicate an EVP, before it’s properly embedded in your company culture will fail.
Engaging employees through powerful internal communication creates an emotional connection between talent and organisation. Indeed, companies with effective internal communication experience 50% less employee turnover than those without.
This has become all the more crucial as the working environment evolved post 2020 and individuals are working in a digital or hybrid workspace. Working from home can feel isolating enough, so it is vital that these employees are regularly updated and engaged in the business. Read all about how to inspire your internal team with a successful internal communications strategy on our blog. This will ensure they still feel like part of the bigger picture.
Engaging communication needs to be creative, inspiring, relevant, personable and accessible. There is no one size fits all, so it is vital that organisations empower their people managers to find the right way for their organisation.
Enrol leaders and managers into your mission by helping them understand the importance of employee communication and how they can impact it. Enrol the services of an expert communications agency - not everyone has those skills in-house.
By providing the right tools to your employers, senior leaders and managers, you can open an authentic, two-way dialogue that results in inspiring and valuable content. These tools can include video, websites or intranets, email, social media or company messaging platforms, mobile and display branding can also be used to great effect here.
Tools must be tailored to your organisation and determined after research and employee focus groups. This provides you with the opportunity to use tools that are the right fit for your business and people.
Measuring effectiveness of your communication platforms
You can measure how effective your communication is via both quantitative and qualitative analysis. Depending on the existing platforms you use, you can report on open rates, click throughs and number of views, as well as via employee engagement surveys and communication audits.
Internal communication tool quick wins
Start simple. One quick win would be to set up an intranet or regular newsletter that engages employees of all levels, and open up the opportunity for two-way communication, by providing them with the opportunity to give feedback which most importantly must be listened too.
Defining and articulating your EVP and then communicating this effectively to your internal and prospective talent can be the difference between business performance and failure.
But remember that consistency and authenticity is key. For an EVP to truly inspire your team, everyone must believe in it.
Looking for support in creating and communicating your employee value proposition? That’s what we’re here for.
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