The official blog of Abacus Group — a place to share our knowledge and thoughts on trends in recruiting

May 18, 2015

The CEO’s Role in Employer Branding

We have always maintained the significance of promoting a strong employer brand and have talked about the ways in which a business can highlight specific economic, psychological and functional aspects to attract a target group of professionals. Beyond its execution (How can we do it?), the concept of employer branding has newly been discussed in terms of ownership (Who’s responsible?).

Widespread appreciation for employer branding strategy execution emerged as a result of two key factors. First, candidates have become choosier in their job search selection, meaning that companies have to work harder to secure new employees. Secondly, general understanding has developed following studies like this that distinguish between company brand and company brand. Essentially, a well-known product or service does not guarantee that talent want to work for a business. Conversely, a business does not need a popular consumer brand to become a top workplace.

Since then, the concept has grown in popularity, but ownership has remained ambiguous. We’ve pointed out that executive recruiters function as spokespeople for employer brands, but they aren’t the creative and strategic forces behind them. Meanwhile, research from Employer Brand International identifies a decrease in HR’s involvement in employer brand strategy in recent years.

Instead, a new article from the Harvard Business Review suggests the assignment of employer branding to CEOs, or at least ensuring they’re paying attention. With nearly three-quarters of CEOs vocalizing concerns about inadequate skills and talent, it’s certainly in CEOs’ best interests to understand how to best compete for the strongest candidates. View the full article to learn more about how “a growing number of firms are beginning to realize that accountability for the employer brand experience must ultimately fall on the CEO.”

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