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Why you need an Employee Value Proposition (EVP)

In a world where the candidate is king, recruiters are continually having to be more and more creative to ensure they attract the best candidates and then retain them.

In recent years we have faced a perfect storm of the lowest level of unemployment for over 40 years combined with job vacancies rising at record rates. Plus, we are also experiencing the strongest wage growth for several years.

It’s tough in such a candidate driven market for employers to stand out and even harder to persuade the best talent to join them, especially as wages are no longer the deciding factor for so many diverse candidates.

So, employers have to truly understand what motivates the candidates they desire and what qualities are valuable enough to attract them and then market their benefits and uniqueness as an employer compared to their competitors.

This is why all employers need to define an Employee Value Proposition (EVP) where the unique set of benefits an employee will receive in return for bringing their skills, capabilities and experience to work for you are highlighted.

Unique is the key word as it is something that is completely personal and all about your values, what you stand for and the culture and benefits you offer your employees, so it is impossible to copy someone else’s. 

An Employee Value Proposition (EVP) is not about just stating compensation and benefits, although of course they are important, it needs to be much more than that if it is to attract the best new talent and help engage and retain current employees. 

So, how to define your company's Employee Value Proposition (EVP)?

Step One:

Your EVP needs to paint a realistic picture of what it is like to work for you and it must reflect your current employees experience.

Inspiring and aligned with your strategic objectives it needs to differentiate your business and be simple, but also broad enough to appeal to different groups.

The first step in the process is to talk to current employees in order to define existing perceptions and guide you on what attracted these employees to work for you and most importantly stay. 

Ask current employees what they consider is unique about your business and what they value and appreciate most about working for you and ultimately what you can do to motivate them more. 

Step Two:

The second step is to define your ideal candidate persona. 

Define the ideal candidate you wish to attract and what characteristics, skills, and traits will they have.

This perfect candidate will need to not only fit the job but also the company culture and it can often be different depending on the role you are recruiting for.

For entry-level roles, for example, where you want to target recent graduates you will need to highlight the career advancement opportunities you offer and how you are a fun place to work.  

If you are targeting young professionals, who are likely to have young children, then they will want to hear about child care and the work-life balance you offer.

Step Three:

When you have defined your ideal candidate persona you can then break your EVP down to cover each separate component: 

Compensation: What is the salary range and type of benefits that would attract your ideal candidate persona?

Benefits: This should encompass the range of benefits offered including paid time off, life insurance and any health benefits you offer such as medical and dental insurance.

Career: Include opportunities for development and progress such as training and education you offer.

Work environment: What you offer to make a positive work environment. What your current employees consider valuable and important to them are the key areas to cover.

Company culture: You need to discuss how you have a great company culture and talk about how relationships are managed and what as a business you value such as trust and collaboration.

Once you have defined your EVP it doesn’t end there as this is a valuable document and needs to be promoted and no matter how good your EVP is it won’t attract candidates if you don’t put it out there for them to see it.

You should find creative and relevant ways to communicate it to the people you are trying to attract and communicate your EVP through branding, public relations and marketing as this will help target and form a positive perception of the value of working for your company for the passive labour market.

Different types of content and communication channels can be used for promoting your EVP including:

  • Company & team blogs

  • Company videos

  • Career site

  • Social networks

  • Talent networking email campaigns

  • Talent networking events

  • Induction plans