In response to current market conditions attracting and retaining talent has become a major priority for organisations.
While ensuring wages match current market rates and offering a competitive benefits package helps attract qualified candidates, employer efforts shouldn't stop there. As time passes, needs have evolved and modern workers are looking for more — not necessarily more money or time off, but more overall value. This value goes beyond the baseline necessities and often includes intangible incentives like an empowering work environment, corporate social responsibility initiatives, diversity in the workplace and remote accommodations. Most notably, employees want their employers to care.
Because of this evolution in worker needs, it's important that companies clearly outline their values to current employees and prospective candidates in what’s known as an Employee Value Proposition (EVP). By showing the value of an employee to a company, EVPs give a more holistic overview of an organisation and its principles, which go a long way in attracting and retaining top talent.
There has been an influx of people leaving their jobs or considering leaving their jobs in search of better, more fulfilling opportunities. The COVID-19 pandemic influenced a shift in what people wanted from a career and the companies they wanted to work for. As we come out of the pandemic, we continue to see employees' wants and needs centre on the value a company brings to its employees and community. Given this, it’s more important than ever that employers define their EVPs to be reflective of their company culture so when candidates are looking for new opportunities, they can easily gain a sense of an organisation through their website and social media channels.
First impressions are everything, and a well-crafted EVP can set an immediate tone to attract like-minded candidates while fostering an empowering community for current employees. To ensure your values are well-represented, it’s important to first understand what makes a good EVP.
The world is becoming increasingly digitised, so while an EVP can exist in document form, it doesn't have to be confined to a stagnant space. It can also be considered an adaptable and dynamic resource that spans multiple channels.
Weaving your EVP seamlessly into your online presence allows more people to get a sense of company values organically, so ensuring your company culture is well-represented online goes a long way in making an excellent first impression. In addition, with social media outlets gaining more popularity, it's opened the door to more creative ways to show off various projects, people and company wins.
Job seekers are looking for authenticity. They want to work for companies whose values align with their own and who prioritise their people. One way to ensure that people remain at the forefront of your business is to include photos of current employees on the website or social channels to tell authentic stories about your company culture.
Some examples include showcasing various community or volunteer events that the organisation participates in, or even sharing milestones and career anniversaries. When possible, it's good to avoid stock photos and opt for candid images of the employees who make up your company. This makes existing employees feel like a genuine part of the work community and shows prospective candidates and clients that you're a company dedicated to evolving your corporate culture with intentional values.
Diversity, equity, and inclusion are individually and collectively invaluable to the development of an EVP. Because of this, DE&I initiatives should not be separated from other company-wide strategies or announcements but should be woven seamlessly into the tapestry that makes up an organisation. As noted previously, today's workers are looking for more, including working for companies with a diverse workforce, who prioritise equity and foster an inclusive work environment.
EVPs are not one size fits all, and they differ from company to company. Your EVP should be intentional and unique, describing and showing what your organisation brings to the table. For example, suppose your company offers remote work opportunities, this is worth advertising as this could be a candidate’s deciding factor in choosing to work for you over a competitor.
It's an employer's responsibility to create and develop an EVP, and the leaders in charge of development must do so with the employee's values in mind. If not, there will be a disconnect between leaders' ideals and the reality of their people and the business.
A successful Employee Value Proposition ultimately acts as a self-watering plant — the leaders create and develop the EVP and, through upholding their promises, gain the trust of their employees who also work to maintain the EVP. The more aligned employees are to the company and what it stands for, the more likely they will engage with and promote it. An effective Employee Value Proposition can increase employees' likelihood of acting as sponsors from an average of 24% to 47%, according to research by Link Humans.
As the world changes, so will employee values. Given this, it's a good idea to revisit and regularly update an EVP to ensure company views are captured accurately. In addition, if an organisation has any new programmes or offerings, it's essential to update the EVP consistently so it reflects current benefits.