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External and internal brands are failing to match up
According to the quarterly Badenoch & Clark Employment Study, over a third of employers are failing to sell their company to their own people. Thirty-four per-cent of people said their perception of their current employer has dropped dramatically since they started working for them.
The figures highlight a significant failing on behalf of employers in the UK. Huge resource is pumped into developing and communicating external facing brands, but it seems the same attention is not being given to an organisations own people.
The results can be incredibly damaging. Increasingly negative perceptions of our employers will almost certainly lead to a workforce growing disengaged, restless and unproductive. Its the reason employer branding has become such a hot topic in HR circles, but it seems that effort is failing to have an impact.
The study also highlighted the ways in which people find out about potential new employers. Most of us put in some form of research of our own, relying on current colleagues (17%) and current employees of the company in question (16%.) Surprisingly though, around one in five (19%) of us dont find out about a company ahead of interviewing for a role.
Neil Wilson, managing director of Badenoch & Clark, comments: From the day new employees walk through the door, it seems their perceptions of an employer start to fall. Interestingly, the trend is even more pronounced amongst HR professionals, the very ones who often have the responsibility for framing and managing an employers brand.
Its incredibly important to have employees that are enthusiastic about the company as a whole. They are the best ambassadors for any given organisation, and the entire business community recognises that happy people are productive people. Effective employer branding has been a relatively recent tactic to try and ensure the connection between employer and employee remains a strong one, but these figures show that it hasnt yet made a significant impact.
The danger is that employees feel betrayed. The brand they were sold before they came on board is at conflict with the reality, and so the result can be large parts of the workforce going through the motions at work without feeling any great obligation to an employer that mis-sold them a culture.
In the current environment, the temptation is to dismiss this as a soft issue and one that will fix itself once more immediate economic considerations are dealt with. Thats an incredibly dangerous game to play in order to steer any company through the current storm, all employers will need a workforce of dedicated, engaged and motivated people. For organisations that ignore their employer brand, those people will be few and far between.


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