What is Employer Value Proposition?
The Employer Value Proposition (EVP) is the core of your employer brand that defines its positioning and strategic direction. An effective Employer Value Proposition should reflect the external demands, your competition, the internal reality and the strategic context of your company. Besides, you also must include the values and principles represented by your company.
What’s the difference between your Employer Value Proposition (EVP) and your Employer Brand?
Put simply, your Employee Value Proposition is internal while your Employer Brand is external. Your Employer Brand is the face your company shows the outside world as a potential employer. It’s the sum of all the different things people think when someone asks them what it would be like to work for Company X or Y. Your EVP, on the other hand, is the face your company shows its employees.
Where your Employee Value Proposition should be the result of thorough preparation that actively involves your employees via focus groups, surveys, interviews and more, your Employer Brand is the outward, creative expression of your EVP. The former defines what employees get out of working for you while the latter tells other people about it. As such, the EVP is sometimes referred to as the ‘Why’ of an organization and your Employer Brand as the ‘How’ and ‘What’.
Why Is Employee Value Proposition Important?
Employer branding is critical for an organization to attract top talent. Done right, an EVP offers a compelling answer to the question - Why should a highly talented person choose to work with us?
Designing an EVP that is unique to your organization will considerably improve your talent acquisition and retention, giving you an employer brand that has an edge over your competitors.
It makes talent management easy, even if you are trying to attract passive candidates.
Attracting Top Talent
There’s no denying that recruitment marketing has changed drastically. Prospective employees are becoming more and more discerning in their job search.
For example, the explosion of remote work options means that candidates can find higher-paying jobs that also give them better employee experience in terms of flexibility and work-life balance.
This has made attracting top talent a lot harder for HR professionals.
An EVP acts as a key driver of talent management and talent acquisition. Therefore, consistent and efficient communication of an employee value proposition that enhances employer branding has become extremely important.
Retaining Top Talent
In this tough market, it is important to attract the right talent. But retaining high performing employees is equally important, if not more.
What are the 5 Key elements of an Employee Value Proposition?
A strong Employee Value Proposition consists of various elements. Together, these attributes determine how both your employees and candidates will perceive your organization as an employer. Gartner distinguishes the following five key elements of an Employee Value Proposition:
- Work-life balance
Let’s take a closer look at each of these elements.
This attribute includes your employees’ satisfaction with their salary, but also additional rewards such as bonuses and aspects such as your evaluation system. Fair and performance-based compensation is one of the 7 HR best practices.
Interestingly, compensation may not be equally important to everyone. There are generational differences in the workforce, with the younger generations valuing for instance development more than the older generations.
This is about benefits. Think about everything from paid time off and holidays to flextime options and retirement plans.
When it comes to the kind of benefits employees value most, flexible hours, the opportunity to work from home, vacation time and paid parental leave all rank highly. There’s no magic, one-size-fits-all kind of benefits recipe, however. New parents probably value different benefits than graduates, so try to customize where possible.
Stability as in career stability, opportunities for your employees to further their career, develop themselves and employee training. Naturally, this is where your learning and development efforts come into play as well as possible mentoring/coaching initiatives you’ve developed within the organization.
This component is about much more than the simple location of your office. You could think of it as location in the broadest sense of the word: a positive work environment, a certain level of autonomy, work-life balance, etc.
In fact, the location element has a lot to do with the employee experience which relates to three environments: technology, physical space and culture (more about culture just below).
Respect is about positive relationships, support, and team spirit, among other things. More than just respect, it’s about your company culture, what are your organization’s core values and beliefs.
What are the 6 Steps to creating a great Employee Value Proposition?
Now that we have identified the main components of an EVP, it makes the complex task of building one a lot easier.
Here are six steps to building a great EVP for your organization:
- Assess what you currently offer
- Interview existing and past employees
- Define the components of your EVP
- Write your employee value proposition
- Promote your EVP
1. Understand What You Currently Offer
EVP development should start with the basics. You must assess what your company currently is and what it isn’t. You should be clear about your branding.
Make a checklist of all the components of EVP in the above section. Go through each item in the EVP checklist and determine the extent to which your company currently offers each.
It’s important to be completely objective while carrying out this activity. That’s why it’s useful to take opinions from your employees about how well these are being met.
2. Research Current and Past Employees
Knowing what your company can and cannot offer is crucial for building a strong EVP.
Use employee surveys to collect feedback from focus groups that include current employees and any new hire.
Include past employees as well in employee surveys, and understand what the organization could have done to help them stay. Lastly, follow this by researching your prospective employees.
In the employee surveys, ask your current employees questions like:
- Why do you like working here?
- What motivates you at work to engage more?
- What improvements would you like to see?
- What’s the single most important need that you have related to our company?
- What kind of support do you expect from the company to help you achieve your professional development goals?
Use the responses given by different focus groups to find out what motivates your top performers and incorporate this feedback to build a better job offer for your potential employees.
3. Define the Components of Your EVP
Now it’s time to evaluate your findings and arrive at your company’s new employee value proposition. This is how you will attract and retain top talent.
- Use the research from the previous steps to answer questions like:
- What salary range and employment benefits will attract my target candidate persona?
- What career growth opportunities is my target candidate looking for?
- What kind of company culture will help my target audience succeed at work?
- What constitutes an ideal work environment for my target candidate persona?
Your EVP should also be segmented for different roles and levels. For example:
- The EVP for recent graduates to fill an entry-level position will highlight things like career growth, fun office environment, positive employee experience, and employee perks.
- The EVP for professionals who are not recent graduates will highlight things like career stability, child-care support, and work-life balance.
Once you have determined what you will offer, translate it into statements that candidates can quickly understand and relate to. Now your strong employee value proposition is ready!
4. Write Your Employee Value Proposition
Once you've identified how your company differs from the competition and what employee experience you can deliver, the next step is to write a strong employee value proposition statement.
Make sure that your EVP statement is clear, unique and inspirational. That's the only way it will help you attract and retain top talent.
Also, make sure that your EVP is aligned with your employees and the company's expectations.
5. Promote Your EVP
So, you have a winning EVP in place, but even the best EVP is pointless unless it is well communicated.
So what’s next?
Don’t just talk about your EVP on the careers page on your website. Promote it!
Leverage the different internal and external communication channels you’re currently using in your organization to get the word out.
Internally, you can promote your EVP through company blogs, newsletters, email, town halls, and internal communication tools.
Externally, you can promote your EVP across social media, such as LinkedIn pages, website careers page, job postings, recruiting videos and employee referral programs.
Get your brand ambassadors to promote the employer brand using their social media platforms.
There are many communication tools available to help you promote your EVP across various touchpoints of the candidate journey.
The key is to ensure it is integrated into your corporate communications plan and employee advocacy strategy.
6. Review Your EVP
The first step in the review process is to measure how key talent is responding to your new EVP. Check metrics like:
- Higher engagements on social media on job-related posts
- Increase in applications
- Increase in responses from passive candidates
- Falling attrition
But that’s not all!
Keep reviewing your EVP from time to time - at least once a year. People’s expectations change over time, and even if your current EVP is extraordinary, fresh takes are always important for it to keep working.Therefore, keep taking employee interviews in focus groups to understand what people are looking for. This will ensure your EVP is still strong to attract and retain the right talent.