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Employer Branding strategies: companies defending themselves

A communication strategy that is gaining ground between competitiveness and “Z tendencies”.

In today’s job market scenario, it is interesting to note how the adoption of a communication strategy is becoming essential for companies. A company’s mission, its objectives, and its ethics are easily contestable elements in a highly competitive market that is struggling to generate truly authentic concepts.

For a company, distinguishing itself in the way it communicates becomes an indispensable prerogative and a potential factor for strong growth. Rather than plain descriptions of who and where they are, new company profiles tend to privilege approaches that are multi-mediatic, innovative, and close to the language used by the younger generations; becoming poles of attraction for very young audiences who, being “spoilt” by current technological advances, require constant stimulation.

The name Generation Z defines a specific category of individuals born between the second half of the ‘90s and 2010; they have a creative nature, they endeavour to create new and uncharted business opportunities, follow new technologies, and believe in the power of social media and of cutting edge technological tools to boost their entrepreneurial rise.(1) It is a generation that does not settle for the standard level of things; consequently, even the process of looking for work must conform to more complex needs. The new talents no longer limit themselves to looking at companies per se; they perceive them as employers and wish to know their ethics, their missions and visions, and their values, even before starting to consider any career opportunities on offer.

As an expression of the current social metamorphosis, the Employer Branding strategy takes various aspects into consideration: the degree of transparency and accessibility of company information, brand reputation, attractiveness to candidates and related retention rates—i.e., the degree to which a company is able to retain employees in terms of loyalty. A study (graph 2) showed how retention (27,18%) and company reputation improvement (23,49%) were the most highly considered benefits during an Employer Branding campaign.

The importance of Talent Branding and of social media communication in the selection process

The search for qualified candidates by companies is constant and crucial: companies wish to bag the best talents to gain in terms of their professional quality and productivity. To this end, in order to effectively attract candidates, it is apposite that a company brand sport an attractive and appealing image.

Special attention must be given to Talent Branding; this is an evolution of Employer Branding and refers to a new way in which to present overall professional actuality, one in which the concepts of reputation, attraction, and retention are highly optimized. The purpose is to present the company as the ideal workplace; the “testimonials” are the employees themselves, who, in the role of ambassadors of the brand and of its values, occasionally use social networks to publish videos and posts in which they portray themselves as being integral components of the company, and thus responsible for its success.

Today, organisations invest more and more in social networks: as a consequence, fans—and therefore fidelized users—are on the increase.

Talent Branding is an interdisciplinary strategy that requires the involvement of both the HR and the Marketing and Communication departments. A synergic and integrated collaboration between the two departments turns Talent Branding into a distinctive advantage for a company, besides overhauling the traditional selection system in favour of Talent Acquisition. Candidates are no longer sought when the need to cover positions arises; on the contrary, a company invests in its recruiting strategy, ensuring that it has an extended audience of fans that are interested in its actuality, and therefore one made up of potential qualified candidates(3).

Myriam Caccavelli


1) The Monster Multi-Generational Survey concluded in January 2016 by TNS, a global research agency. The study involved more than 2,000 people between US Boomer and Generation X, Y, and Z employees and job seekers.


3) #FormulaTalento: a research promoted by Associazione PianoC, Fondazione Cariplo and QVC Italia, and focussing on the themes of Employer Branding and Talent Acquisition.