How To Leverage Employer Brand to Hire and Retain Engineering Candidates

Woman engineer overlooking construction site

It’s hard out here for a hiring manager. 

Today’s historically tight labor market has organizations across all industries entrenched in what has become romantically referred to as the “War for Talent.”  Companies scramble over one another for a chance to vie for an ever-dwindling supply of available candidates, exhausting all available means to attract, hire, and retain talent

No longer are the traditional staples like compensation and benefits enough to earn your organization consideration from job seekers who are spoiled for choice. 

Today, you need more tools. 

And there is one tool in particular that is rising to the top of modern recruiting strategies: employer brand. 

Often reduced to and confused with just “company culture,” an effective employer brand requires a legitimate internal focus and strategy to develop properly. But, when done correctly, it can be a hefty competitive advantage. 

We’ll highlight the steps you can take towards developing your employer brand so you can use it to help better attract and retain top engineering talent. 

Identify Your Company’s Real Brand Internally

Our first step is to properly define what we mean when we say “employer brand.” 

In addition to company culture, employer brand includes an organization’s values, mission, and, most importantly in our context, how effectively they promote that message externally. 

In order to promote that externally, though, an organization’s employer brand must be decidedly sorted out internally. Rather than just taking the best guess or relying on an old (and potentially no longer accurate) set of values and understanding of your culture, it’s crucial to make defining what makes your organization unique an intentional process.

Above all else, an employer brand needs to be authentic, truly honoring the sentiments of the real, living people that work for you. Nothing will get you dismissed quicker from job seekers than an image that seems phony or contrived. Instead of crafting an employer brand in a closed meeting with a few executives, involve as many people as is feasible to uncover the real values that are meaningful to your employees. This way, once your values and mission are defined and ready to roll out, everyone is bought in, believes in the message, and will then naturally espouse that message out to the world—which leads us nicely to our next step.

Promote Your Brand and Make It Visible Throughout the Candidate Experience

One of the first initiatives you want to take once in possession of an authentic, appealing employer brand is ensuring it’s visible throughout the candidate experience. 

Every small step in the entire recruitment process through the eventual onboarding should be infused with your brand. This extends all the way to how your organization represents itself on LinkedIn, how you appear on Glassdoor, and other channels candidates use where they may be exposed to you. 

Once a candidate engages with you, it then becomes crucial to maintain that message in all interactions from emails, phone interviews, eventual on-site interviews, and throughout their first months with you. There are numerous methods to accomplish this and limitless opportunities to innovate and modify them to best suit your unique brand. For example, though, you can structure interview questions that link back to your values, reach out to candidates after you extend an offer to express your excitement, or invite them to an on-site lunch even before they start. 

Outside of direct recruiting efforts, it’s still critical to broadcast your employer brand to as wide an audience as possible to ensure it doesn’t go unnoticed. 

Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, and similar networks are all terrific mediums to share focused messaging about what makes working for you special and, most importantly, why people should. And if you’ve devoted intentional time to establishing your brand internally, all of this becomes much more effective. Anyone can talk the talk, but those who truly walk the walk stand out clear from the rest. 

If leadership believes in and embodies your brand, others will follow—including potential candidates.

An authentic, robust employer brand that is cohesively and consistently promoted and ingrained into an organization’s recruiting efforts, while requiring sincere effort internally, can be one of your most reliable advantages when you look for new talent. And in today’s incredibly competitive hiring market, every advantage matters. 

RHM Staffing Solutions

Finding it hard to find the engineering or manufacturing talent your business needs to thrive? You’re not alone, and RHM Staffing Solutions is here to help. 

Our team of dedicated recruiters has the networks and industry know-how required to help great organizations find great talent, even in today’s candidate-driven market. 

Give us a call today to learn how we can do it for you.