BRANDE : Your Digital Brand

August 29, 2010

Employee Retention in a Digital World

Employees join companies and leave managers. But how they leave is up to them. Conversations that were once shared with friends are now shared with friends, friends of friends and the world. And people, especially Gen Xers, discuss bad experiences almost 4x as much as good ones.

Here are 3 things you should be doing to make sure that your Employer Brand is thriving in a digital world:

1. Bi-directional communications: Make sure that you are creating listening opportunities from the bottom up. Provide safe ways for employees to discuss manager and co-worker issues.

2. Exit interviews: To ensure complete and accurate information, they should be conducted by a third party company, not someone on your staff.

3. Training: Add social media guidelines to your ethics and compliance training. Are employees blogging about the workplace or “friending” their vendors? Create policies and consequences.

4. Manage your digital reputation: Glass Door, Jobvent, Vault– the tools are there. Make the time to use them, or get some help from the outside.

July 9, 2010

Are You Too Booked for a Social Life?

Based on the growing number of invitations I receive to veet-ups (webinars), meet-ups, workshops and conferences, I know that social media marketing has captured everyone’s attention in a big way. We have truly embraced the concept of creating dialogues with our fans, and relationship building with our key interest groups.

I say above that “we have embraced” but it really isn’t “us”, is it?

Have you “down-sourced” the project to the summer intern you hired? Have you “out-sourced” it to your agency partner?

Search a job aggregator and you will find a handful of Social Media Marketing Directors, Strategists and Managers but more frequently, interns.

It is not surprising that we are unwilling to commit dollars to the ownership of communications that we can’t measure the value of, but at the same time, the stewardship must be held by someone with vested interest in success of the program.

Your agency/PR partner can help you with the learning curve and messaging but actions need to happen within the company, not outside of it. The voice needs to be framed authenticity, and a person we can engage with. That person needs to be a permanent member of your team.

Your intern may be gone in September but your Digital Brand is forever.

Join the conversation and the Linked In group Your Digital Brand.

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June 22, 2010

Are you Strong Enough for HR Branding?

You’ve tackled all the tough challenges and branded every communications initiative both inside and out: Employer branding, branded intranets, training portals, microsites, social network marketing, branded internal and benefit communications- you even have a smart-phone friendly career site.

And now, this summer, just when you thought it was safe to go back in the water (ocean, pool, lake or other), I propose the super-branding challenger round –

HR Branding: The brand that is You and Your Department.

Here’s why it requires expert strokes—

  • You will be swimming in strong currents- serving the needs of 2 masters, as employer and employee advocate.
  • Due diligence in brand crafting means creating dialogues- you will need to be open to honest feedback from executives, employees, line managers and other fish, both big and small.
  • Sustaining an authentic HR brand for the long haul might require making significant operational changes that pull you outside the safe waters
  • Synchronization- make no mistake- this is a total team effort

If you’re still up for it, dive in.

Creating an Internal HR Brand

The Rules

1. Lay the Groundwork

  • Define objectives, communications channels and audience needs

2. Ask (or have us ask) The Questions

  • Who is HR?
  • What Should Employees “Feel” when they “See” HR?
  • What Should Candidates “Feel” when they “See” HR?
  • How Can HR Best Support Their Goals?

3. Point to an End Goal

  • A brand is a promise- what’s yours? Whether you create an HR mission, vision or charter, you must embody that promise to each person within your organization

4. Engage Employees

  • The more they become a part of the process, the greater their commitment to your efforts

The Prize

Review step 1- what were you looking to accomplish?

Perhaps you want to create a unifying purpose to your HR team at large- have them thinking felling and acting as a brand. Or maybe instill a greater understanding within employees and executives of the important work you do.

Through the application of the same methodology employed by marketing professionals, your Human Resources Department will become the Brand of Choice for talented employees and potential employees looking to become a big fish within your organization

May 16, 2010

Your Digital Employer Brand

Reputation Management in a Digital World

According to a study conducted by Microsoft earlier this year, 70% of surveyed HR professionals in U.S. (41% in the UK) have rejected a candidate based on online reputation information. Don’t be surprised, but your candidates are doing the same thing.

In recent years, in most industries (healthcare and IT notwithstanding), the rise in unemployment created a temporary truce in the war for talent, as layoffs abounded and many non-business-critical positions were put on hold. That is slowly changing now, as corporate payrolls are increasing and jobs are being added.

That’s why it might be a perfect time check out your company’s digital employer brand. Pressed on time? Don’t worry. Technology coupled with sophisticated search engines has made it easier than ever.

Just type “working for [company]” into your fav browser and see what comes up. Chances are, you’ll see something from Jobvent at the top of the list. Further down, you may find surprising insights from Glass Door, Yahoo Answers or Vault.

Want to play more? Try putting in the name of your toughest competitor and see what you find out. Put together a play book for recruiters on how to sell against all your competition. Use the intel to re-sell employees on why they belong with you.

If want to delve deeper, LinkedIn can be a huge help. Do a search by your company name. Not only can you find current employees you’re connected too, but they’ll also show you past employees, new hires, and the most popular profiles. If you’re looking for brand ambassadors, there they are.

On the competitive side, call a past employee of your competitor. Find out why they left and what they think of your company as an employer.

Dick Tracy would be in heaven.

You can also opt to go with a no-work-involved investigation- sign up for Google Alerts, Trackr or Social Mention. Then the information comes right to your Inbox. (Or call BRANDEMiX– this is routine for us- it’s part of the research we amass to create authentic employer value propositions.)

Online reputation management is becoming big business, as companies look to track what’s being said and measure the success of their social media marketing strategies.

In a simpler time, employee conversations ended at the water cooler, but today they’re flowing around the world. HR and recruiters need to be part of the dialogue.

Keep the conversation going at Your Digital Brand