Let’s retire the term employment branding and most certainly banish the term employer branding. Let’s replace it with people branding (not to be confused with personal branding).

Here is why:

Employer branding is focused on the entity doing the attracting, not the market they want to attract. When this happens, the outcome is employer advertising instead of employment marketing or branding. Companies might end up with nicer looking career pages and ads, with more Twitter followers and potentially even end up winning some awards and prizes. But don’t be fooled, it has nothing to do with branding or marketing and it increases the divide between companies and job seekers.

People Brand

Employment branding is a neutral term. It is the safe option. If it was truly about the people we want to work for our organisations, it would be at least called “employee brand”, as it is made up by the employees, utilized for managing their performance and used to attract further employees. In our times, however, with fewer employees and instead a workforce made up of contractors & freelancers, with important parts outsourced to agencies, the term is too narrow.

Talent branding is, for exactly the reason mentioned above, replacing “Employment branding”. It is more appropriate as it reflects talent without defining a legal status. However, it still is too narrow: It only includes workers but not the capital, the owner, the bosses.

It is the latter who set the tone of a people brand and actively or passively define the desired values needed to equip a company for the future. If we were only talking about the talent, we would only look at the actual culture, the one that we currently have. Instead of progress, we would have stagnation. Instead of managed culture, we would have a drifting culture, which is a slow yet powerful poison for any organisation.

People branding gives us the horizontal and vertical integration across an organisation’s entire network. It gives the scope and flexibility to include consumers, partners and producers, as they will become increasingly important in the definition and perception of our people brand.

For more information on this topic, download our white paper ‘The unity of HR and Marketing”. If you have specific questions on how to develop a people brand for your company, get in touch.

This post was first published on the 1st June 2016 here

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