Workplace culture is fast becoming the new hot topic following the hysteria of Employer Branding and Employee Engagement. It’s great that this issue is being addressed by employers and the HR/Recruitment industry at large.
A plethora of studies and research has been done on the great impact Employer Branding has on talent attraction, 1 in 3 job applications are motivated by employer branding. Job Seekers have a little more control in the current job market and the best candidates have options. So how do you use your current company culture to attract and retain staff?
You begin by asking your candidates what they want in a company; thankfully Software Advice, an online HR & talent management technology resource, conducted a survey doing exactly that. They found that jobseekers’ most common definition for company culture was ‘casual/relaxed’. This begs the question why do so many companies try to define themselves as ‘fun’ or ‘quirky’ or any other stimulating adjective? It’s highly likely that this stems from the widely misunderstood concept of Employee Engagement. The logic seems to be that, as an employer you will create a ‘fun’ company culture, which will result in 1. Your employee’s love you and are super engaged and 2. Candidates will see how much fun your employees have and want to work there too.
Does it actually work?
It depends; a great company culture that is widely publicised is essentially what Employer Branding is predicated on. The biggest revelation is that you don’t have to be ‘fun’ to have a great culture. Once the respondents had defined company culture; they were asked what type of culture is likely to make them apply for a job? Despite jobseekers having a strong preference for a ‘casual/relaxed’ culture, the overwhelming majority (29%) valued ‘honesty and transparency’ followed by 22% valuing a ‘casual/relaxed’ culture. Only 11% chose a ‘fun’ environment.
There’s no denying that ‘fun’ companies attract candidates e.g. Google, Apple, Facebook, etc. but note that employees and candidates will value a transparent approach they want to work where they feel valued first and foremost and the fun stuff can come later.
“If companies are seeking to attract candidates using their company culture as their primary recruiting hook, letting it be known that your company is home to an honest and transparent culture might just be the most effective way to build your employer brand.
And if you’d like to ensure that your company is as honest and transparent as possible, consider this advice from Halley Bock: start small. Supervisors and managers should constantly ask themselves, “Am I being candid? Am I being transparent?- Erin Osterhaus, Software Advice HR researcher
Remember to get your entries in for the Employee Engagement Awards before October 1st. The awards ceremony will be on the 28th January and hosted by George Lamb. It will be a stimulating and laughter filled event and your company certainly deserves to be nominated. You don’t have to be ‘fun’ to be engaged!