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Talent Acquisition and the Employee Value Proposition:  A Realistic View

 

So this is how the conversation went as the Corporate Recruiter of an International Not for Profit Financial Institution made a job offer to my friend :

“I want to be perfectly frank that we are hiring you for the Manager X position which requires lengthy travel assignments where you might be away for 2—3 weeks around six times during the year.  We don’t see our organization getting larger but rather getting smaller through economies of scale and better execution.  Therefore, the prospect of upward mobility in this organization is basically nonexistent.  I wanted to be extremely clear about this,” says the Corporate Recruiter, “if you want to move up in this organization, then this is not the place for you.”  And, it went on from there.

Quite frankly, I was quite dismayed when I heard about this interchange from my friend.  But, he wasn’t dissatisfied and was thankful for the opportunity.  Not to digress, but he has a great education (MS Electrical Engineering and an MBA) as well as a unique set of work experiences that were spot on for this position.

As I analyzed the situation further, I thought about the concepts of a realistic job preview and more importantly, considered how crafting an Employee Value Proposition (EVP) should be realistic about what the organization offers its employees.

An EVP is defined as the unique set of attributes and benefits that will motivate candidates to join a company and current employees to stay.

The value proposition sits at the core of an employer brand, informing the message.  It is what differentiates your offer from that of other employers, making your brand authentic, unique, and consistent with the reality of being an employee.  The brand is how this message is articulated across all your stakeholders (internal and external) consistently.

A value proposition is consistent with strategic objectives and clearly demonstrates your uniqueness.  It contains what is true now and what the organization aspires to be.  It gives employees a sense that the organization is responding to the changes they want to see.

It must be articulated in a style that appeals to the audience.  The value proposition is at the core of all other processes.  The characteristics need to be reflected in the corporate and employer brands.  The value proposition becomes the driver of engagement, and informs recruitment messages and communication.

Therefore, as you begin to formulate your company brand and EVP, here are some questions that you will want to answer:

1)       How you would attract, engage, and retain your talent if your organization’s compensation was significantly below market value?
2)      Why would the “best” talent choose you over the competition?
3)      How are you going to involve your employees in the development of your EVP?
4)      How will you capture and reflect the true reasons that top talent is attracted to and stays with your organization?
5)      How will you facilitate employee involvement at the beginning of the process? (i.e., surveys, focus groups, interviews)?
6)      How will you ensure that Senior Leadership is committed to the process?
7)      How will you develop a communication strategy?
8)      How will check back with the employee base before the release of your EVP?

Answering the questions above will allow your organization to formulate an EVP that is both realistic, attractive and informs Corporate Recruiters on how to capture and communicate the essence of the brand.

About the author: Patricia Dammann is VP of Programs at the Institute of Organization Development. She can be contacted at pmdammann@gmail.com.