Many companies struggle with how to be an attractive employer, but the answer is not hard to find. Becoming an attractive employer – if you are not one already – is one of the for any business. If you are well known in the labor market as an employer that offers competitive salaries and unique employee benefits, which are some of the top , the best talent will seek you out.
This article outlines what current employees find most attractive in employers and how you can implement these changes in your own business to attract top talent.
All employers should concern themselves with how to be an attractive employer, especially in today’s fraught labor market, where employees are leaving jobs in droves. The reasons they are giving for leaving include staid wages, no professional development opportunities, and a lack of respect from management.
Employees are feeling more empowered than ever to demand what they want and walk away if their demands are not met. Many companies are starting to slowly meet their employees on this level, for example, by giving them more control over their schedule, workload, and responsibilities, things that among what employees want most.
Becoming an attractive employer has company-wide benefits, like investing your training and onboarding resources in the right candidates and reducing high employee turnover, lost productivity, and skills gaps. The figure for how much it costs to train new hires runs between $1000 and $3000 per new hire. Not to mention the other costs associated with restaffing vacant positions, including updating onboarding materials, head-hunting for executive and management positions, training new staff, and giving new hires time to adjust to become productive. This money goes down the drain if your new hire is lured away by a more attractive – read flexible – employer who offers their employees higher salaries, more flexible hours, packages, and more . If you do not want your hiring department to devolve into a revolving door operation, you should think about how you can create the conditions that will make your employees stay.
There are many different strategies for how to and they are applicable to whatever industry your business is in, regardless of its size. The steps range from raising your profile as an attractive employer by increasing your social media presence to doing some form of outreach with recent graduates to attract new talent.
1. Build a Company Culture and Mission
Regardless of whether you are a large, well-established, global company or a start-up that’s just getting on your feet, understanding your company’s core principles is a way to connect with how to be an attractive employer. A company that understands its mission can transmit those values to the workforce and attract anyone who has like-minded principles.
How do you create this mission? How do you transmit it to your employees so that they can internalize it? What are your employees’ values? How do they see their mission?
Companies need to define their mission by understanding what they offer that no one else does and instilling that uniqueness in every new employee. New research suggests that work culture plays an oversized role in how employees relate to their employers: surveyed by Deloitte said that a company’s culture should also be a competitive advantage.
To this end, you can create a company creed, motto, or set of principles that all new hires are required to memorize or refer to when in need of motivation or inspiration. You can design a company culture workbook to pass along to HR, which would then distribute it to new hires whenever they join the company.
If your company brand is outgoing, exciting, in-your-face, or adventurous, employees with those qualities will follow. If your company brand is more serious, grounded, and intellectual, then people who value those qualities will see your brand as attractive. But it is important to stay on-brand as much as possible and not to have a generic, bland, one-size-fits-all philosophy.
More than half of all workers (58%) surveyed in a recent mentioned “the ability to do what they do best” as one of the top six things they expect from their employer. While that may seem like a vague demand, you should recognize your employee’s innate talents and put them to use, rather than try to fit an employee with writing and editing talent into the finance or accounting department.
2. Reward Your Loyal Employees
Employers tend to focus on attracting new employees to the detriment of those they already have, which can be misguided. If your long-serving employees feel undervalued, underappreciated, and underestimated, they will likely start looking for an employer that does appreciate them.
What’s worse, surveyed said they would leave a job solely because of the poor management style of their immediate supervisor. But now, imagine the opposite. Imagine how many employees would quit if a skilled, well-liked supervisor left their position because their demands and needs were ignored by management, precipitating a rapid drop in employee morale and productivity.
That is why rewarding long-time employees with things like promotions, increased salaries, more professional development opportunities, and skills training are that can help you keep your most experienced managers and mid-level leaders, which, in turn, helps keep your rank-and-file employees happy.
3. Practice Openness and Transparency
One simple way to be an attractive employer is to make yourself available to your employees in many different ways. You can do take various small steps to achieve this end, like setting up listening posts so that you can communicate directly with employees to having virtual face-to-face meetings with as many employees as possible.
Offering accessibility and transparency to your employees makes them feel included in the decision-making process and not simply faceless cogs in the machine expected to always perform at the highest level. surveyed said that more facetime with senior managers is something that would entice them back to the office.
Openness and transparency can also refer to your hiring practices. If you are looking for new hires, then your Careers or Work for Us page should be displayed prominently on your homepage so that any prospective hires can find it easily. You can also use networking sites or freelancer platforms to source new talent and employees.
The more you open your business up to the general public so that they can find out more about you, the more you will begin to build a trustworthy and reliable brand. You can also do outreach and send company ambassadors to job fairs, college campuses, and other events where people are looking to network.
4. Create a Social Media Presence
Social media is tricky terrain. It has positives and negatives, and brands that want to expand their social media presence should do so carefully. Some small to mid-sized firms may not want to venture beyond a simple page, while others will rely heavily on social media for an array of different reasons.
Social media offers not only a marketing platform, but also a form of communication, an e-commerce site, and an analytical platform, all rolled into one, so its influence is hard to ignore. You can utilize all these data points to create more pointed ad campaigns and target certain demographics, including for hiring campaigns that attract the best talent. You can also take smaller steps, like creating a company page, posting employee-generated content, and recognizing outstanding employees in your social media. Companies that deftly navigate social media can attract younger, more tech-savvy employees who can, in turn, help their new employers become social media influencers.
Note that you can use social media to screen new employees, as close to have done, with another 54% rejecting new hires based on their social media pages. However, this is a controversial practice. Too much incursion into employees' personal spaces may deter, rather than attract, top talent.
5. Be More Flexible in Scheduling and Work Hours
Flexibility in the workplace can mean a lot of things, but it’s an attitude that should spread company-wide if you want to attract and keep the best people. Flexibility in the form of remote work or scheduling is one simple way to increase employee satisfaction while also making your workplace more responsive to diverse needs.
Employers are now letting employees create their own schedules, work from home, or have shorter work hours so that they can take care of their families and other responsibilities, a burden that mostly falls on women. with children means reducing burnout and stress while also bolstering feelings of belonging of female employees with kids.
A flexible workplace also means hiring people who may not have all the necessary skills and experience but who demonstrate a proven willingness to learn and become a team player. Many companies have shifted their priorities away from hiring only the most qualified candidates to hiring people who show potential. Flexibility, in short, means not always adhering to the old strictures about the employer–employee relationship but rather, finding new ways to accommodate your employees.
6. Support Your Employees’ Advancement
Once you know what is most important to your employees, you can design employee perks and benefits around those things. Engaging employees is a crucial way to be an attractive employer. Your employees are multi-dimensional people – that's why you hired them – and they certainly have ambitions and goals that go beyond coming to work for you every day. Are there certain career or educational goals employees have that you can help them achieve?
If your employees want more professional development, you can use to connect them with educational resources so that they can learn new skills. BeMo professional partners can give their employees access to experts in several fields, who offer services such as and advice on . Your employee’s children can also benefit, since BeMo is one of the leading providers.
Maybe their goals and desires lie outside of the workplace: said companies should take public positions on contemporary political or societal issues like racial inequality, climate change, and workplace harassment. A socially engaged company, in turn, inspires workers to work harder and with more pride because they know their company has similar values.
If family is central to their lives, as it is for most employees, you can add more family-friendly employee benefits, such as increased maternity or paternity leave and childcare support, to your . But engaging is not a one-way street. While listening to their needs and aspirations, you can also transmit what you value most about them and how you see them contributing to the success of the business.
7. Create an Inviting Workplace
Many employers are letting employees choose between working remotely or going to a co-working space paid for by the company. People who work on-site spend a lot of time in the office, and because work takes up most of their time, it behooves you as an employer to create a safe and inviting environment for your employees. How you implement this step is entirely up to you, but you should get input from your employees on how best to improve your work environment.
Does your office need a renovation? Should you install more plants and green spaces? Should you offer more gourmet food, coffee, teas, and other beverages or have a meal plan so that fresh food can be delivered to your office every day? A lot of employees are starting to demand in the office, like showers and bike racks, to encourage longer hours at the office and greener alternatives to driving. There are an endless number of ways that you can spruce up your office to make it cozier and more enjoyable.
8. Offer Unique Perks and Invest in Your Employees
Some companies give out free ice cream. Book publishers let employees take as many free books as they want. Companies based in California, Florida, and other tropical climates let their employees go surfing, biking, or hiking in the middle of the day if they want. There is a wide array of perks and benefits that you can offer your employees to keep them happy and productive. They do not have to be the same as what competitors offer or match the outsized perks of global companies. Some of the include things people in any industry want, like health insurance, an employee assistance program, flexible work hours, and an open-ended schedule.
Advancement within the company is another oft-cited benefit or perk that employees look for when deciding on their next employer. Global brands and companies have more than enough room for advancement and are careful to cultivate talent from within, using a network of seasoned employees who know each other and often refer one another for top-ranking positions. Larger companies also offer training modules and management training courses that help mid-level employees prepare for a greater workload and more responsibilities. Of course, in small and mid-sized businesses, there is only so far an employee can go, but you should still present advancement within roles as a possibility in your company.
Employers should understand their employees’ long and short-term goals and recognize that their employees may not see a future in their current job, for many reasons. Maybe they have other professional ambitions or want to relocate to another country. It’s important to have these conversations with your employees regularly so that you both understand what you want from each other.
9. Keep Up to Date on Trends
Employers who do not keep abreast of important advances in technology, management styles, or employee benefits miss out on offering their employees the best. As they are involved in the day-to-day operations of the company, the employees themselves are often the best way for employers to learn about new trends in office or human resource management that have been used by other businesses in other industries.
For example, certain companies got ahead of current work trends brought on by COVID-19 shutdowns before others. One communications company gave everyone one Friday a month off to prevent anyone from working more or less than everyone else. They also reassured remote employees of job security and career advancement by letting them join in-person meetings if they wanted.
Reading trade magazines or any professional association material is also another way to stay informed about what’s happening in other companies and industries. You can always fine-tune something new to make it more germane to your company, but things like remote work, flexible hours, and employee benefits are always welcome.
10. Pay Attention to Work–Life Balance
Your employees have a life outside of the office, and any reasonable manager or company CEO should understand and value this side of their employees. Too much pressure or strain on either side of the work–life balance can threaten both, which is not good for anyone. According to the OECD (Organization for Economic and Co-Operation and Development), at paid work.
The number of people who work long hours varies between countries, with higher than average work hours more common among low- and middle-income countries with fewer worker protections and mandatory benefits. Your company can institute its own workplace health and safety rules and monitor how employee performance and satisfaction are affected by them.
Companies should make an effort to maintain a healthy work–life balance by instituting rules about how long remote workers can work, encouraging employees to unplug from their work, and providing them with resources (mental health, childcare) to help them achieve a legitimate work–life balance.
If you want to know how to be an attractive employer, there is nothing easier than listening and engaging with your current employees. After all, they must appreciate your company, your brand, and your philosophy to have stayed with you for as long as they have.
Engaging employees is one step, but there are many others, as this article has detailed. Depending on the size and scope of your company, you may not be able to give your employees everything, but it’s not necessary to have billions in the revenue stream to be able to make your employees happy.
Little things like company excursions or retreats, wellness benefits, or employee assistance programs are all cost-effective measures that can increase employee retention. You can also take more concrete steps, like giving employees the opportunity to create their own hours, increasing salaries incrementally or based on performance, and giving employees more autonomy, overall.
1. What can make me an attractive employer?
You can become an attractive employer by offering new and current employees more flexible working hours, higher salaries, fostering a positive, friendly work environment, and giving employees more time off.
2. Why should I be an attractive employer?
You should strive to be an attractive employer for many reasons, including engaging the best talent, retaining your current, high-value employees, and creating an open, friendly work environment.
3. What makes an unattractive employer?
An unattractive employer is inflexible in letting employees make their own hours, does not support the professional and personal development of their employees, and does not respect their employees’ work–life balance.
4. What can I offer my employees to make me an attractive employer?
You can poll your staff on what kind of changes or benefits they would like to see added to their company benefits package. You can also find out what your competitors are offering their employees and introduce new perks and benefits.
5. What are some of the ways to become an attractive employer?
You should first understand your company’s brand and philosophy and build a message around those values to attract people with similar values. You can also offer employees more benefits and perks than they currently receive.
6. What do employees expect from an attractive employer?
Employees always cite higher salaries and more inclusive, comprehensive benefits (like health insurance) as their top draws for prospective employers.