Global disruption and workforce transformations are challenging the employer brand status quo. Companies are being put to the test with how well they can incorporate new remote work models, how quickly they can adapt to changing markets and how well they are attending to workers’ changing needs.
Employers who fall short in managing their brand reputation and disregard employees’ needs during the COVID-19 pandemic and other modern-day challenges will have a more difficult time retaining and hiring talent. As the dust settles and workers go back to a new normal, there is an opportunity for organizations to shape up their employer brands to focus on what today’s workers want: a better employee experience. By supporting your transformed workforce and developing the employees who remain, you can make a tremendous impact on your company culture in a relatively short period of time.
Here are a few things to consider to become the employer brand of choice in this new world.
Embrace flexible work models
Workplace flexibility has been a growing trend for several years, and now, the vast majority of workers (81%) say they want a chance to work more remotely post COVID-19.
Even if right now most, or all, of your workers are on the frontlines or back in the office, we’ve seen how quickly environments can change. To elevate your employer brand in this day and age, it’s important to create a culture where workplace flexibility can flourish alongside engagement and productivity.
Start by incorporating flexible work models into your business strategy as well as your talent strategy. For example, after seeing improvements in performance and communication from staff working remote amid COVID-19, Telenor, a multinational telecommunications company with 19,000 employees, announced in a letter from the CEO that the company is pivoting to more flexible ways of work. Telenor’s newly combined business and talent approach focuses on more virtual meetings like Zoom or Microsoft Teams, at home availability, and trust and performance-based management. The company also has moved away from using offices for desk work, and is using its office space for brainstorming and social inspiration instead.  This aligns with what today’s workers want—men and women from every generation in the workplace prioritize flexibility in terms of adjustable hours and remote work. Without a doubt, a better employee experience is a flexible one.
Prioritize employee wellbeing
In terms of the COVID-19 pandemic, companies also are doing a lot to create clean, safe work environments for employees to come back to. This renewed focus on health and safety in the workplace is a key reason why employer branding is more important than ever.
To attract and motivate talent, and reassure consumers, leading organizations are using their employer brand story—both internally and externally—to illustrate how they value employees’ wellbeing and support front-line or essential workers. Amazon, for example, has run a series of TV advertisements thanking staff for working during the pandemic, some of which have even featured employee testimonials about how Amazon helps them stay safe and healthy at work.
The future of work demands a safety-first approach. Those who rethink the way people work and take steps to improve workers’ physical and emotional health will be better positioned to recruit and retain talent now and for years to come.
Instill a culture of reskilling and continuous learning
Another key component of your employer brand is how you build up talent from within. 89% of workers want more learning opportunities, such as remote skills development and career coaching. Helping employees upskill and grow within the organization won’t only improve your company’s popularity among potential employees, it also will create the workforce agility required to thrive in this increasingly digital world.
Provide workplace support across the entire talent lifecycle
End-to-end workforce solutions, like Talent Solutions, allow companies to create brand consistency as employees at every level have a similar experience. Sometimes this means creating a handful of work streams that span the talent lifecycle. In fact, a major U.S. insurer established its esteemed employer brand position by segmenting career development programs across five work streams: assessments for senior hires, entry-level manager development, assessments and coaching for execs, senior leader development and coaching for senior leaders. Since each program was from the same talent management provider, Right Management, it created the customization and consistency the U.S. insurer needed to become the employer brand of choice in the market.
To learn more about how Right Management and other Talent Solutions products can help you achieve your employer branding goals, visit www.talentsolutions.manpowergroup.com/.
 What Workers Want 2, ManpowerGroup, https://go.manpowergroup.com/hubfs/What_Workers_Want_2/MPG_Future_for_Workers_By_Workers_1.pdf?hsLang=en
 Flexibility is the Way Forward, Telenor, https://www.telenor.com/flexibility-is-the-way-forward/
What Workers Want, ManpowerGroup, https://go.manpowergroup.com/hubfs/MPG_WhatWorkersWant_2020.pdf?hsLang=en
 What Workers Want, ManpowerGroup, https://go.manpowergroup.com/hubfs/MPG_WhatWorkersWant_2020.pdf?hsLang=en
 Case Study: Coaching Leaders Ensures Success, ManpowerGroup, https://workforce-resources.manpowergroup.com/leadership-development/case-study-coaching-leaders-ensures-success