Developing an Effective Employer Value Proposition, Part 1: Why You Need an EVP

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EVP #1Author and global vice president of strategy and advisory at Universum Richard Mosley knows a lot about employer brand management. In fact, he’s written two bestselling books on the subject. Now, Mosley is here with a three-part series of articles on employer value propositions (EVPs), in which he’ll share his eight tips on developing strong EVPs. Join us on Monday, September 21st, and Monday, September 28, for the second and third installments in the series — both of which are exclusive to Strong brands are founded on consistently positive associations, built through consistent brand communication and experience. The only way to achieve this is to be crystal clear about what your brand stands for and the benefits your brand promises to deliver. Effective customer and consumer brands are founded on propositions that define the key benefits a person will derive from their relationship with the brand. The same is true of employer brands. The employer value proposition — also known as an “employee value proposition” in some circles — helps to provide a similarly consistent point of reference for everything you say and do to promote a positive brand reputation and experience among the talented people you wish to attract, engage, and retain within your organization. As Simon Riis Hansen, senior vice president of HR with LEGO Group, puts it:

“What our People Promise [EVP] has done is provide us with a compass that can guide us in multiple ways from our strategic direction to our everyday decision making, and it is something you can see present all the way from our HR processes to the way we communicate. It has been woven into the fabric and colors everything we do.”

EVP #2The last thing the world needs is more jargon. You would think that the term ’employer brand’ would be enough, but if it’s your job to build a strong employer brand, you generally need a few additional technical terms to get the job done well. You don’t need to be familiar with the terminology of engineering to enjoy driving a high-performance car — but it certainly helps if it’s your job to design the engine that powers the experience. So, in the spirit of precision engineering, here is our perspective on the key terms an employer brand manager needs to get their head around:

– Employer Brand: people’s perceptions of you as an employer (good, bad, or indifferent).

– Employer Value Proposition(EVP): how you’d like to be perceived as an employer.

– Employer Branding: the activities an organization undertakes to communicate a desirable employer brand image.

– Employer Brand Management: the full spectrum of activities you orchestrate to deliver a consistent brand image and experience.

Our suggestion would be to avoid using all four terms in one sentence — but taken in turn, they can provide a more precise description of what needs to be done to deliver a high-performance result. Versions of this article appeared on the author’s LinkedIn blog here and here. All photos courtesy of Universum.

By Richard Mosley