Webinar Recording: Questions & Answers
Future-proof yourself with Employer Branding
(by Celeste Sirin, Founder of Employer Branding SA)

HR Works provided Employer Branding SA with a great opportunity to participate in a recent webinar to position the importance of Employer Branding within the South African workplace. Mark Baker of MyGrow launched the discussions with requesting the definition of employer branding, followed by how we’ve had to view talent and employer brand management quite differently in today’s current South African economic climate.

Through this platform we were able to confirm where HR Leaders understanding, perceptions and tasks lie with Employer Branding; with businesses still needing to not underestimate and undervalue the dire importance of adopting this practice as a business imperative.

Take a listen to the WEBINAR RECORDING and enjoy reading some key questions/areas that not only emanated from our webinar, but that often arise in my interactions with HR Leaders on employer branding today:


1. Is there possibly not confusion regarding the definition of “employer branding” versus “employee value proposition” and whether HR stakeholders have confused these terms through not keeping the terminology simple?

Simply put, Employer Branding is the image of your organization as a ‘great place to work’ (Brett Minchington, Chairman/CEO Employer Brand International ) both internally and externally. It is therefore concerned with the attraction, engagement and retention initiatives targeted at enhancing your company’s employer brand.

The Employer Value Proposition (EVP) is the ‘offer’ provided by an organization in return for the skills, capabilities and experiences an employee brings to the organization. It is an employee-centered approach in that it is aligned to both addressing the needs and retention of existing employees, but acts as a key driver to talent attraction and engagement.

Acknowledging that the SA employment rate is presently incomparable to the rest of the globe, it is still interesting to note that Mercer confirmed Career Development, Purposeful and Meaningful Work and Sense of Belonging to be the top 3 value propositions.

Opportunity: SA Leaders need to become innovative in offering unique benefits outside of purely financial benefits. This will assist with their talent attraction and retention strategies.

2. How would you recommend we overcome historic negative opinions of an employer and attempt to introduce a new concept of employer branding?

There is no better way to repair a fragmented brand than to actually engage employee participation. A company’s employer brand is “fluid” and evolves continuously, with one often not having much control over it in the public space, other than to manage negative commentary. When building an employer branding strategy, one typically begins with conducting focused groups inviting participation from employees to build a strong value proposition.

Opportunity: Whether it be starting from scratch or “renewing/refreshing/ revising” your “offer”, you need buy-in from within the workplace, first. Once you have ascertained your EVP, you can reflect on how it compares to past reviews and build from there. In this way you can endeavor to bolster and instill renewed life into your brand.


3. How do you know what to include in your EVP? Employees do not always want to speak up in climate surveys.

Employer Branding SA has been called upon to conduct a number of internal employee climate surveys as well as to facilitate focus group workshops to gather such information. Since employees’ feedback is treated and managed anonymously, they are far more open to divulge on “what works for them”. This also addressed the question which arose from another participant who was curious to understand whether there were nuanced ways to building employer branding for different generations of employees.

Opportunity: Through this method, employees of all generations are provided with an opportunity to voice their input, with companies receiving much rich insights and direction in order to competently address, engage and motivate their workforce.


4. Where does one start?

Employer Branding starts with your CEO and Leadership Team, with HR having a seat at your EXCO meetings. As companies are becoming more people-centric with a strong focus on employer branding so is the emergence of a new role for a Chief People Officer. However, as one participant confirmed, in order for HR to be recognized as an HR C-suite decision-maker, they need to “learn to speak the language of Business i.e. numbers / cost, as how else do you gain recognition and/or sell employer branding into the business”).

Opportunity: SA Leaders need to position Employer Branding with the CEO and their Leadership Team, by putting together a strong compelling business case demonstrating the achievement of strategic objectives together with measurable business impact.

The above are just some of the common questions that often get asked. With employer branding being so broad, one often gets asked “So where does one start with implementing an Employer Branding Strategy that will benefit my company?”

The above-mentioned Napkin Strategy and Q & A provides you with high level takeaways. Please feel free to contact me if you wish to further discuss.

Whilst Employer Branding is an accepted best practice in a number of advanced countries world-wide, there resides a wealth of knowledge, insights, learnings and case studies from which to draw.

Employer Branding SA’s mission is to bring as much intelligence into the South African Human Capital Market, with a view to further educating, informing and sharing the success stories of our global counterparts.