<img height="1" width="1" style="display:none" src="https://www.facebook.com/tr?id=2059727120931052&amp;ev=PageView&amp;noscript=1">
Employee Engagement Recruiting & Hiring Employee Experience

Linking Employer Branding and Employee Engagement

July 25, 2023
6 min read

Employee Engagement Surveys

This post was originally published in April 2015. It was updated with new information and best practices around employer branding and employee engagement in July 2023.

Human resources and recruiting teams juggle lots of moving parts. You’re creating hiring and onboarding processes; building up your employer brand; monitoring HR metrics; managing payroll; fostering employee engagement; and so much more. While you know these moving parts all impact each other, their relationships aren’t always clear.

But it’s important to make these connections to find the right plan of action. When all the moving parts click — when those crucial links between ideas are made — it makes for much better decision-making.

Employer branding and employee engagement are two such HR functions whose connection may not be obvious at first. But when you understand how each influences the other, you can use that knowledge to your advantage.

Are you making the connection between your #employerbrand and #EmployeeEngagement levels? See how they’re linked:

What is Employer Branding?

Anyone in the workforce can relate — before starting a new job, or even submitting an application, we imagine what it would be like to work at the company. What we envision has a big impact on whether or not we would accept a job offer. It’s arguably one of the most impactful parts of the hiring process. That’s where employer branding comes in.

Employer branding is the process of molding and promoting your organization's image and reputation as an employer. Just like your company builds its brand to attract customers, your employer brand communicates a compelling identity and employee value proposition (EVP) to attract top talent. It shows job seekers why it's so great to work for your company, helping job seekers shape that vision. 75% say they evaluate employer brand and reputation before applying.

A strong employer brand helps your business stand out and attract the best candidates. But it’s not just about the products or services your organization offers. Your EVP and brand symbolize company values, how people are treated, the opportunities for growth, and the overall employee experience.

And it’s essential that your employer brand is more than just advertising. It should accurately represent the work environment and derive naturally from your company culture to both attract and retain top talent.

Your employer brand should shine wherever your company appears online:

  • Company “About” page
  • Dedicated careers page
  • Job descriptions, posts, and ads
  • Social media profiles

What is Employee Engagement?

Employee engagement refers to how connected to and invested in their work your employees feel. It’s deeper than job satisfaction — highly engaged employees are interested in their work and feel a sense of purpose. They’re more productive and their retention rates are higher. High engagement is driven by communication, support, and growth, which shapes your company culture into one that is positive, welcoming, and stimulating.

Employee engagement affects how your business operates on a daily basis and more engagement results in more successful businesses. Engagement drives creative problem-solving, and it’s the magic behind innovative, groundbreaking businesses. Customer loyalty, employee retention, and even business profitability are all highly dependent on engagement.

To sum it up, engagement can make or break business success.

The Relationship Between Employer Branding and Employee Engagement

You might think employer branding and employee engagement are mutually exclusive, or at least, not so closely intertwined. One has to do with how to attract people to your company, while the other has more to do with people whom you’ve already hired. In reality, the two are directly related.

A good employer branding strategy attracts job seekers who share similar values, are interested in your company’s mission, and whose needs align with what your company provides. When their experiences as candidates and employees lines up with your EVP, you build trust. That increases the likelihood that candidates will accept job offers and new hires will stick around for years to come. They then become productive, highly-engaged employees who feel supported and heard at work, and that leads to higher employee engagement overall.

And it works in reverse, too. If your employee engagement efforts are working, your employer brand will grow. Putting effort into engaging your employees strengthens your company’s reputation as one that invests in its people and cares about them beyond their start date. The majority of job seekers evaluate your reputation and EVP before they even consider working with you, so it’s essential to put your best foot forward.

But as we mentioned, a good impression won’t last. You need to be sure your employer brand is realistic. 20% of new hires say they’d quit within a month if their new job wasn’t what they expected. According to Talent Board research, 33% of companies are following up with new hires about six weeks into their roles to see if the job is meeting their expectations.

20% of new hires will quit in the first month if the job doesn’t match expectations. Ensure your #employerbrand is encouraging #EmployeeEngagement instead of harming it:

How to Boost Brand and Bonds

Listen to Employees to Build Trust

“When people feel like they have opted into a situation with eyes wide open, they’re much more likely to accept the good and the bad, and to show up as engaged, productive, satisfied employees.” - Kathryn Minshew, CEO and founder, The Muse via CNBC

The link between employer branding and engagement means that strategies to boost one will most often have a positive impact on the other. Here are a couple of ways to build up your employer brand and strengthen the bond employees have with their work, their coworkers, and the company.

1. Recognition For and From Employees

One of the best — and most cost-effective — methods for improving employee engagement is letting them know how much they’re appreciated. Employee recognition can be as simple as thanking an employee for a job well done or as involved as creating an employee recognition program that incentivizes employees to thank each other for good work.

But 40% of employees say their managers recognize them just a few times a year or less, despite the incredible benefits.

When employees feel they receive enough recognition, they are:

  • 90% less likely to say they are “always” or “very often” burnt out at work
  • 40% less likely to say they experience a lot of stress, worry, and sadness
  • 10 times as likely to say they feel a sense of belonging at work

Feeling appreciated at work means your employees will be more likely to act as brand ambassadors, meaning they’re more likely to talk about the company in a positive way and refer friends and family.

2. Peers in Performance

Get peers involved in performance reviews to decrease bias and more accurately evaluate employees. 360 reviews collect feedback from more than just managers to represent several perspectives of performance. Incorporating peer feedback helps increase engagement — it can help make employees more self-aware and motivate them to work on their strengths and acknowledge their weaknesses. It helps build the trust that’s essential for high engagement and a strong employer brand.

3. Listen and Take Action

Ask for employee feedback and then act on it to increase engagement and build your company’s reputation as a caring employer. When employees feel heard at work, they’re 4.6x as motivated to do their best. It strengthens their connection to your company and shows them that they can contribute to changes in their workplace. Together, that makes for a sure increase in engagement and builds up your employer brand.

A Firm Foundation with Software

Every part of the employee experience is linked, and it always begins with job seekers’ first encounter with your brand. Build the employer brand that fits your organization on the foundation of robust software designed to manage the complete employee lifecycle.

ClearCompany Talent Management is an all-in-one solution for creating your brand, showcasing your EVP, and nurturing new hires into longtime high performers.

Get the tools you need to power effective strategies to showcase your brand, attract best-fit employees, and keep them around:

  • Branded Career Sites to tailor your career site to your unique brand
  • Text recruiting suite for fast, personalized communication with candidates
  • Self-service employee portals to engage new hires and onboard quickly
  • Employee surveys to gather feedback and measure engagement
  • Multiple types of performance reviews for fair, effective reviews
  • Reporting and analytics dashboards for an in-depth look at your workforce

Sign up for a demo of ClearCompany today and ask about our employer branding tools.

Applicant Tracking Made Simple

The easiest-to-use ATS software you’ll find, designed to support a remote hiring strategy.

Schedule Your Demo