It is hard to find a better PR tool in Poland than a well-chosen and systematically implemented external employer branding strategy. More precisely, the strategy of building a positive image of the company as a noteworthy employer among potential candidates. According to the Employer Branding in Poland 2020 report conducted by the HRM Institute, as many as 30% of companies operating on the Polish market claim that EB is currently one of their top priorities. The budgets allocated to external employer branding are constantly growing. On which tools do Polish employers spend the most? Which of them are the most effective?
Table of contents:
- Employer Value Proposition
- What are Polish employees looking for?
- Offline activities
- Employer brand monitoring
- Careers tab
- Job advertisements
- Social media
- Employer branding campaigns
Employer Value Proposition
Before a company operating on the Polish market begins work on building an external employer branding strategy, it should start by defining the organisation’s culture and its values, as well as determining its EVP. EVP (Employer Value Proposition) is a set of distinctive features of a unique offer, which a given company offers to its employees. It is a promise to the candidates we care about. As many as 51% of the companies surveyed in Poland declare having developed an EVP strategy for their employer brand.
The EVP should be the result of market research and take into account:
- Expectations of Polish candidates for the job.
- Opinion of current employees about working in the company.
- True statements about the culture of the organisation.
- Language that is relevant to both the company and potential candidates.
- Long-term development plans of the company.
Defining the EVP is of key importance for the external employer branding strategy in Poland. It is the EVP that will influence the company’s external communication language, communication platforms, the appearance of recruitment advertisements, the strategy of employer branding campaigns and the selection of KPIs to measure effects. So, what attracts Polish candidates? Which attributes of the employer brand do Poles appreciate the most?
What are Polish workers looking for?
There has been absolutely no change in this field for three years. According to HRM Institute, the most desirable EVPs for Polish job candidates include:
- working atmosphere,
- a favourable system of employee appreciation,
- remuneration and benefits.
Company reputation, working environment or clear career path are less appreciated by Polish employees. However, it is worth noting that this trend is changing somewhat. Here the main reason is the ongoing pandemic. A large part of employees work remotely, so the importance of attributes such as office design or work tools (chairs, equipment) is gradually decreasing. Poles are also no longer attracted by such “lures” as a young team, “fruit Thursdays” or “attractive salary” (an increasingly common practice – fortunately! – is to inform candidates directly in the ad about the specific amount of salary).
Today, most external employer branding activities in Poland have moved to the Internet. However, this does not mean that offline activities should be completely abandoned. There are still a number of quite effective (especially in some industries) EV tools that go beyond online.
- participation in university career days (here attention should be paid to the profile of the university, faculty, or field of study, which should correspond to the company’s industry),
- meetings in vocational schools with company representatives (especially for manual workers and professionals such as hairdressers, beauticians, etc.),
- presence at job fairs and other organised meetings for people actively seeking a career path.
Employer brand monitoring
There’s no denying that it’s the Internet where all the magic of Polish employer branding happens. Online industry forums, Facebook groups, comments in Twitter or LinkedIn discussions, opinions in Google… – the places where your potential employees, current employees and former employees are active should be monitored. Internet monitoring tools such as Brand24 or SentiOne are great for this purpose.
When setting the parameters to measure, it is good to take into account:
- general industry monitoring,
- analysis of statements about the company and their sentiment,
- analysis of the places where discussion about the company takes place,
- Analysis of competing companies’ EB activities.
As many as 89% of Polish candidates indicate that the company website, and in particular the “career” tab, is for them the most important employer brand communication channel. This is excellent news – after all, one’s own website is a place over which one has total control. However, it is worth being aware that having such a tab is not enough to attract the right employees. Almost 40% of Polish respondents admit that they do not find all the necessary information they need during the recruitment process on company websites.
The website should therefore meet all the requirements set by the applicants:
- readability and appropriate hierarchy of information layout,
- adaptation of the site to mobile devices,
- up-to-date list of positions currently being recruited (preferably with specific dates),
- description of the recruitment process for the position,
- company requirements for the candidate (education, experience, skills),
- clearly highlighted benefits of working in the position, as well as salary (preferably in the form of a rate or range),
- company’s achievements and benefits for the employee,
- a form to recruit for the position,
- spontaneous recruitment form.
If you want to really stand out from the crowd, it’s also a good idea to think about a distinctive graphic design (it should be consistent with the company’s visual identity), testimonials from current employees (with their photos or in the form of a video), as well as photos of company life (preferably in a particular department).
Recruitment processes are the most important area of external employer branding. Well-formulated, clear and unambiguous job advertisements (necessarily including a description of the further recruitment process!) save a lot of time and money. They allow you to sift out the most valuable candidates faster and attract them with favourable employment conditions.
A good job advertisement should include:
- conditions of employment (job description, salary),
- profile of the ideal candidate (requirements, skills, experience),
- information about the brand: vision, goals, plans,
- language adapted to the company and the sector, but also to the candidates and the position.
The ad should also not be too short. Too little information can make candidates not consider the company credible. It is not worth using the so-called “pulling the wool over the candidate’s eyes”, i.e. flooding him/her with a large amount of irrelevant information and empty, meaningless platitudes (such as “a young, dynamic team”). Poles have stopped falling for such tricks.
Social media is currently one of the most important platforms for conducting external employer branding activities in Poland. So which channels are worth communicating on and what should be written there? It depends – above all – on the industry. The presence of brands in Polish social media can already be observed not only on Facebook and LinkedIn, but also on Twitter and even… Instagram. The role of fleeting, short-lived messages on Insta Stories is growing (admittedly, Instagram is the least valuable source of knowledge about the employer’s brand for Poles, but last year its role increased from 3 to 14%). Polish companies are paying more and more attention to what they post on their profiles. This is the official end of profiles turned into advertising pillars, informing only about current recruitments. It is also the end of artificial stock photos. Today, the focus is on long-term strategic communication that strongly emphasises a brand’s EVP.
So what should you pay attention to in Polish external employer branding in social media?
- The visual identity should be consistent with the company’s corporate identity, but it is good for it to stand out from the competition.
- Emphasis on the people in the organisation.
- Showing the organisation’s culture and values.
- Photos of real employees and their stories.
- Information about current recruitments (given in an eye-catching way).
- Information about new employees hired at the company.
- Transparent information about changes in the company.
- Social media ads directing to the website.
Interestingly, due to Covid-19, even recruitment talks or onboarding of new employees are increasingly moving to the virtual world. It is worth communicating about this on company profiles.
Employer branding campaigns
Systematic implementation of external employer branding activities in Poland is not all that can be done to effectively build a positive employer image. It is also worth adding temporary campaigns to the regular budget, such as video spots, social media campaigns or other short-term actions armed with measurable goals and KPIs. There are many possibilities. It’s worth knowing in advance what works best in Poland and what to focus on when planning a campaign of this type.
According to the HRM Institute report, Polish candidates are most attracted by:
- Stories about the company told by its employees.
- Presentation of the benefits of working for the company.
- Emotional messages linking the candidate to the company.
Polish candidates are less likely to pay attention to facts and figures about the company (we could consider abandoning tables and graphs in favour of well-conducted storytelling – after all, stories always sell well) or the presentation of the EVP (the attributes of the employer’s brand should therefore be presented in the campaign in a less direct manner than a list of advantages and promises). It is good to be aware of this even before we start the actual planning of specific stages of an external employer branding campaign in Poland.
External employer branding in Poland is developing all the time, setting the bar higher and higher for companies that recruit on this market. If you are looking for a Polish PR agency to take control of your employer image (online and otherwise), contact us today. Our experts will be happy to create a tailor-made strategy for you!