Today’s job seekers are prioritising culture over salary when it comes to identifying ideal employers. The way your staff view your company and the reputation you have in the job market is a key differentiator and can mean the difference between a high employee turnover and retaining top talent. It has never been more important to start working on your employer brand.
A global poll by management consulting company Gallup revealed that only 15% of its respondents engaged with their jobs. The rest were just clocking in and out. Presenteeism (when employees show up but aren’t productive due to a variety of stressors) hurts your bottom line and is a clear sign of poor employee experience.
Job seekers expect consumer-grade experiences in the workplace, and failing to keep up with this trend will cost you. Achieving the equivalent of a competitive advantage in the job market means creating and maintaining an inspiring employee experience. I believe that this can be found at the intersection between brand purpose and company culture. Allow me to explain.
Purpose – your fourth bottom line
You might have heard of the triple bottom line (people, planet and profit). Now it’s time to expand this to include brand purpose. Businesses are shifting toward a quadruple bottom line to address the ethical and moral needs of their employees and customers.
Unlike your unique value proposition, vision or mission statements, your purpose reveals your company’s reason for being beyond the financial aspects of the business. Most of the time, a brand’s purpose doesn’t refer to the product or services it offers or how successful it plans to be. Your purpose is about what your company believes in more than it is about what your company does.
In other words, your unique value proposition is how you’ll change the lives of customers, investors and business partners; your vision is how you’ll change your field or industry; and your purpose is how you will change society.
Toiletry company Dove wants women to have healthy body images, Facebook believes it is a human right to connect and TOMS Shoes wants to change the world one shoe at a time.
Employees are interested in your purpose because of the Golden Circle, a concept popularised by Simon Sinek in his TED talk. He claims that inspired organisations are those in which employees don’t just know what they do and how, but why they do it. He explains that answering your brand’s “why” is what determines your purpose and what employees connect with emotionally. Employees who are inspired by your purpose are more engaged and perform at their best.
Intentional company culture
Every business has a company culture. The difference is whether or not a business is intentional about its culture. And it’s a difference that has consequences for your hiring pool, staff morale and team productivity. If company culture is surpassing salaries as a main consideration for jobs, shouldn’t you start being more deliberate about yours?
Think back to your brand purpose. This defines how your business hopes to affect society as a whole – a long-term (if not lifelong) objective. Company culture is a set of values, behaviours and beliefs that guide the organisation towards that vision daily – a set of short- to mid-term goals.
Your business’s company culture enables your overall purpose by defining what type of person is welcome in your organisation and how they’re expected to conduct themselves and interact with others. This inspires your employees to find a sense of belonging in the workplace and unite with your team for a collective goal.
Establishing an intentional company culture means defining your values clearly and communicating them to your employees. Perhaps you have to embark on an employer branding initiative and reframe the perception of your brand in the job market and the public eye. Or you can identify staff ambassadors who embody your company culture and launch internal employee experience campaigns to reinforce your values daily.
What’s important is setting the standard and steering your company culture instead of letting it form on its own and then reacting to it. Align it with your purpose and you’re that much closer to an inspiring work experience.
Where digital fits in
The future of work is digital. In fact, the workplace isn’t just a place anymore. Whatever your employee experience strategy is, digital enablement will be essential for you to engage modern, tech-fluent staff members.
As businesses cotton on to the value of remote work and the role of digitisation, many of them are questioning what their company culture looks like in the new normal. But digital-first companies already know that culture can thrive with the help of digital.
Taking employee experience to a consumer-grade level means borrowing the principles and techniques of an incredible customer experience. Employer branding is a marketing exercise all the same and applying digital only enhances its impact.
Whether you’re rebranding as an employer, launching an internal campaign or establishing an employee ambassador programme, using the digital landscape as a driver will increase your success. From social intranets to a wealth of cloud-based communication and collaboration tools, you’ll find that the future of work is not the demise of purpose and culture but rather the fertile ground for inspired and valued employees.
To learn more about what League Digital can do for your brand’s employee experience, download our informative brochure.