I want to let you in on a little secret…
You might be surprised to hear me say that the biggest win related to an employee value proposition (EVP) /employer brand strategy project is not that of talent attraction, but rather the fostering of a cultural metamorphosis. A wonderful by-product of such a project is greater ease in attracting outstanding talent, as when one’s position and voice are crystallized, the opportunity for brand recall is strengthened. But again, that is simply a fabulous by-product.
When we commence these projects digging deeper and with a spirit of organizational self-discovery and intentionality around building an exceptional employee experience, we can transform more than a recruitment process. We can transform our culture.
This is not new and has always been the case. By the end of this article, you will understand why this happens. My hope is that I will inspire you to do this critical work. This does not require an agency although many organizations opt to utilize one for several reasons including expertise in this discipline, speed, ease, and objectivity. But most importantly, do not let budget constraints prevent you from realizing your organization’s best self! An EVP project is at the helm of a cultural rebirth.
Let the fun begin!
Let’s start with what an EVP is. An EVP is the “why” around your organization. It’s what attracts and retains talent. It is also your promise to your people. When we undergo an EVP project, we distill the very qualities which attract talent to us, as well as gain an appreciation for who we are not. In this realization there is power. There is the capacity to communicate clearly to both existing employees and prospective talent around the authentic employee experience. In doing so we optimize our recruitment funnel by having those unlikely to find success at our organization opt-out while those who will thrive in our environment have their interest intensified. For example, some candidates thrive in builder environments with a higher degree of fluidity and ambiguity, while others will be met with frustration and crave deeper process maturity. An EVP is an exercise in truth-telling flavoured with the aspirational tone of what’s to come, as with each hire we advance closer to this.
Next, some mistake employer branding as an exercise in career site beautification. This to me is “veneer work”. If what is beneath the #instaperfect surface is far from inspiring and contrary to the messages being shared, credibility will be lost. When we approach this work with genuine motivation to become our best self, we can co-create an enriched employee experience and future together with our employees. This is the business of transformation, not of selling an illusion.
For those who know that there’s something special that needs to be unearthed and are committed to this being the catalyst for positive organizational change and enhancement, this is the work that gets me fired up!
It’s important to look at this initiative with fresh eyes. It’s a paradigm shift rather than looking at it as simply another HR initiative. One needs to understand that the EVP is at the heart of one’s people strategy and brings cohesion to the full employee lifecycle.
Once an EVP has been established, every new HR program, initiative, and policy, becomes intentional and crafted to support an exceptional employee experience honouring the people promise. It is approached with a spirit of alignment to the overarching “why” of the employee experience. Rather than the employee lifecycle looking similar to a quilt with random employee programs patched together, it is an intentional and cohesive experience which aligns to this “defining why”. How we onboard, how we inspire, how we develop, how we build belonging, how we part ways, how we foster ongoing relationships within alumni networks, and how we invite those very people back into the organization as boomerang employees, all aligns with the EVP and tells a consistent story. If you’re looking for authenticity around your employer brand, this is how you do it.
An EVP is the Optimus Prime of HR. It is the transformer (80s cartoon version of course!) that leads the people strategy. Beware of the veneer, they are the Decepticons of this space.
Listen to our podcast to learn more on this subject.
To learn how to escape the legacy mindset, foster a cultural metamorphosis, and change the energy of your organization, check out the book Peace, Love, & Meaningful Careers available in Kindle and paperback here. To learn how you can work with Powerhouse Talent on the development of your EVP, hit us up here.