How to create a great employee value proposition

An employee value proposition (EVP) is the unique set of benefits which an employee receives in exchange for the skills, capabilities and experience they bring to a company.

Defining an EVP is about evaluating the essence of your company; how it is unique and what it stands for. It encompasses the core reasons that people are proud and motivated to work there, such as the inspiring vision or distinctive culture. When integrated into all aspects of the business, a strong EVP will help to retain top performers and attract the best external talent.

Here are some tips in cultivating a compelling EVP:

Understand existing perceptions

In order to develop a strong, realistic EVP you must first understand what perceptions existing staff and potential employees have about your company brand and culture. Some things you need to understand:

  • Why are potential employees attracted to the company?
  • Why do existing employees believe the company is unique?
  • What do they value most about working there?
  • What do they stay?
  • Why do they leave?

This information can be gathered through employee surveys, focus groups and exit interviews, as well as through feedback from former employees and job applicants.

Determine key selling points

Establish a cross-functional team to review the research results and determine the aspects of your business that people value the most. Use this information to draft an EVP, ensuring you consider the following questions:

  • Does it align with your strategic objectives?
  • Does it clearly differentiate your company?
  • Does it paint a realistic picture of what it’s like to work for your company?
  • Is it inspirational?
  • Is it broad enough to appeal to different groups?
  • Can it be easily expressed to potential employees?

Test your EVP with existing employees and a sample group from external markets to ensure that it adequately describes why an individual would want to work for the company.

Communicate the message

Once your EVP has been defined, find creative and relevant ways to communicate it to the people you are trying to attract. Start by conveying it through all hiring channels such as company websites, advertising and during the interview process.  That way prospective talent can determine if they would make a good fit for your business. Consistently communicating a compelling EVP through branding, public relations and marketing will also help the passive labour market form a positive and enduring perception about the value of working for the company.

Ensure alignment

Existing employees are your most powerful source of advertising and play a key role in helping to attract talent with the right cultural fit. To cultivate brand ambassadors your employees must see consistency in the image you sell externally and in the day-to-day reality of working for your company. Incorporate the EVP into the company’s induction programme, reward and recognition schemes, internal communications, policies and business plans so that it is reflected in the way your company conducts its daily operations. Review your EVP annually to ensure that it continues to reflect the changing employee experience.

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