Effective employer branding is something that is necessary for a company to have, yet many companies struggle to get it right.
When working on your strategy, it’s important to consider the role your company plays in promoting health and wellness for your employees and how it reflects positively on your employees and on your brand.
There’s a lot that goes into employer branding strategies – learn what to include in your strategy, tips to incorporate wellness into your strategy, and corporate wellness ideas you can use to get started.
What Is an Employer Branding Strategy?
An employer brand refers to the way your employees perceive your business as an employer as well as the reputation you have among the workforce. Employer branding strategies are the things you do and the actions you take to control and change your company’s narrative to ensure that you are attracting and retaining top talent.
Employer branding impacts almost every area of your business, and having the proper strategies in place to ensure you have a good reputation among your employees and in the workforce is essential to your company’s performance, profitability, and ultimately success.
5 Common Elements of an Employer Branding Strategy
Here are five common characteristics that great employer branding strategies have.
An Employee Value Proposition
A company’s employee value proposition (EVP) is what their employees value or enjoy most about working at the company. Building your employer brand strategy starts with a well developed EVP.
Learning what your EVP is requires conducting research within your organization beyond reviewing employee engagement surveys. You must talk with employees and review your messaging to know how to position the goals you have for your strategy.
A good employer branding strategy is built with employees’ needs and wants in mind. After all, they do make up your brand. And who else could articulate the experience of working at your company other than the people that work there?
HR can’t build the strategy on their own.
Employee-generated content is the best element to have in your employer branding strategy. It’s more credible and engaging to individuals outside the company that may be interested in partnering or working with your organization.
Training your employees to be advocates for your company or “employee brand ambassadors” starts your employer brand off strong.
Effective employer branding strategies include messaging that is consistent throughout various forms of internal and external communication. The message your company tells the world should be the same no matter where it is shared.
This means your corporate messaging remains consistent on social media platforms, on career sites, during interviews, or at conferences and career fairs.
What makes you different from your competitors? Having a brand strategy that is unique, engaging, and positive will make your company stand out from the others. Find what is unique about your company that translates well in your strategy and brand story.
For instance, you may have a great work environment, a relaxed company culture that encourages workplace wellness, or have an excellent outreach program that involves giving back to your community.
Including all of these elements in your employee branding strategy helps you to attract and retain employees. However, there is one central element that you can incorporate as a differentiator to your strategy that your employees will love and will attract new talent – workplace wellness benefits.
How to Incorporate Wellness into Your Strategy: 7 Tips
Incorporating wellness into your employer branding strategy involves being aware of what your employees need to feel well, both mentally and physically. Here are a few tips to incorporate corporate wellness in your strategy:
Shift Your Expectations.
Employee wellness programs are expected in today’s competitive job market. However, wellness means something different to everyone. The wellness initiatives you add into your strategy can’t take a one-size-fits all approach.
Shift your expectations by broadening your understanding of employee wellness beyond the old model that focused strictly on physical health only. Before you provide workplace wellness benefits, consider ways to support and encourage not only physical health, but also mental health – the happier your employees are mentally, the more productive and satisfied they will be in the workplace.
Observe Your Employees’ Habits.
Listen to the conversations your employees have with each other in your workplace. Do you notice them discussing going to the gym after work? Do they talk about different things they do to feel good? Are they mentioning they don’t have enough time to work out or to de-stress after work? What apps or podcasts help them out mentally?
Find out what wellness initiatives your employees value and take part in on their own time. This gives you a great starting point when developing a wellness program.
Consider Things That Make Your Employees’ Lives Easier.
Making your employees lives easier, even in small ways, often reduces their stress level and adds to their overall wellbeing.
Convenient or easily accessible wellness initiatives can make all the difference in your employees’ lives. It could be something that truly makes your employees’ loyal advocates for your company.
Use the Input Your Employees Provide.
Get your employees involved in making wellness a part of your employer branding strategy. Ask them what wellness looks like to them and what wellness initiatives would help them feel good and happier at work.
Asking them is only half the battle – you must actually incorporate their ideas into your strategy.
Align Wellness With Your Brand.
Incorporating wellness into your strategy is easy when you align it with your brand. Companies known for wellness recruit and retain top employees better than ones that use wellness as a passing suggestion.
For instance, companies like Google, Bumble, and Asana make wellness a part of their employer brand. They win the recruiting war by gaining more qualified applicants who value wellbeing in the workplace.
Be Flexible and Adaptable.
Healthcare and wellness have changed dramatically over the last decade. Wellness ideas that work one year may not work the following year. Don’t assume wellness has to fit in one small category in your strategy – adapt and adjust your wellness incentives to encourage long-term improvement in a sustainable manner.
Include Wellness Ideas in Your Messaging.
Share the wellness ideas that have worked for you and your employees by centering some of your messaging around it. Let others know what your company has done to champion the wellness of your employees.
10 Wellness Ideas to Boost Mental and Physical Health in the Workplace
Here are 10 great wellness ideas that are sure to aid in boosting your employees’ mental and physical health in the workplace.
Start Fitness Challenges.
Fitness challenges are a fun way to get your whole office up and active. A great example of this is starting a running or walking challenge where employees track their miles or steps. After a certain amount of time passes, add them all up to see which team or individual wins the challenge.
These challenges work best if you offer an incentive like a gift card, extra vacation time, or a free lunch for the winners.
Send Out Custom Employee Wellness and Satisfaction Surveys.
Tailor your wellness surveys to each individual employee to get a true sense of what they want or need in the workplace. This helps them to feel seen, valued, and heard when they notice that you act on their survey in a meaningful way.
For instance, one employee might report that they are happiest when they get to meditate once a day. If you implement a set 15-minute meditation time for all employees who’d like to participate, it’s a small gesture that shows your company cares.
Provide Break Room Games.
Many jobs in today’s workforce are desk jobs that don’t require much movement. Since movement is a major key to physical health, you’ll need to figure out ways to get your employees moving.
A good way to do this is to put active games in the break room. Some offices have ping pong tables, basketball hoops, or foosball. This offers both a mental and physical break for employees.
Include Mental Health Coverage as a Part of Your Healthcare Plan.
Not all companies are required to cover mental health services if they have under 50 employees. Mental health services can carry high price tags when not covered by an employee’s insurance.
To make sure your employees can care for their mental health in the best way possible, talk to your insurer about including mental healthcare as a part of your healthcare plan.
Build Flexibility Into Your Employees’ Work Schedule.
Offering work from home days or flexible work hours makes all the difference in an employees’ mental wellbeing. Giving people time to deal with personal matters and work when it is most convenient for them reduces workplace stress and burnout.
Encourage Employees to Take Breaks and to Use Their Vacation Time.
Many employees feel like they must work through breaks and forego taking vacations to seem more dedicated to their jobs.
Let them know that breaks and vacations are necessary and even encouraged so they don’t feel pressured to work until they have no choice but to take a break because they are burned out.
Offer Discounted Gym Memberships.
Getting active boosts happiness hormones in our brains, and access to a quality gym is an excellent way to encourage employees to get active.
Many top gyms are an added expense that employees won’t consider. Try partnering with a gym or a wellness company to provide gym memberships at affordable prices.
Purchase Healthy Snacks for Your Office.
Snacks that are high in sugar and saturated fats slow down our minds and can cause unwanted health problems. Offer your employees healthy snack alternatives they can feel good about eating to increase energy and attention.
Host Guided Meditations.
Meditation has been gaining popularity among various age groups in the past few years. It helps to maintain clarity, reduces stress, and aids in mindfulness. You don’t need much to host a guided meditation. All you need is a clean space, some gentle music, and a soothing voice.
You may also use popular meditation apps or podcasts to guide your employees through a short and effective meditation.
Invest in Affordable Employee Wellbeing Packages.
With so many ways to care for your employees wellness and wellbeing, consider investing in wellbeing packages that combine physical and mental wellness initiatives for an overall wellness experience your employees will love.
Wellbeing platforms like Gympass take the hassle out of paying for separate wellness initiatives by offering a monthly payment that your employees can buy into as a benefit each year.
Employer branding isn’t a one-stop shop. Remember to keep improving your branding to make sure your employees and other key stakeholders are satisfied with the investment. Test the wellness initiatives you’ve included in your strategy often to make sure your strategy is still relevant and adjust accordingly.
Your employees are the heart of your business – supporting their health and happiness through employee wellness programs will improve productivity and foster business growth.