Thomas Chardin, Founding Partner at Parlons RH.
How would you define the concept of « employer brand »?
The employer brand is the very spirit of your business that reveals itself to the world outside. The internal specificities of a company that build loyalty and commitment - good management, a bold project, ambitious vision, a green approach - all spark the interest of potential new recruits.
In a way, it is like a brand strategy applied to the HR, as whatever the size of the company - from very small businesses to large corporates, including SMEs of course - the company is much more than a simple employer:
• it recruits
• it integrates
• it trains and provides support
• it collects social security contributions and other taxes
• it is a player in their employment area and on a given territory
• it has social, environmental and societal responsibilities
The company thus plays various employer roles for different types of audiences. While it is naturally geared to applicants, it also concerns current staff members on a daily basis.
There is nothing new about the concept of « employer brand ». Employer brand is an American concept that appeared some 30 years ago. At the end of the 90s, the concept sparked strong interest among certain recruitment communication professionals.
Didier Pitelet, a pioneer, patented the expression « brand employer » in 1998.
Company interest for the employer brand has only intensified as the war for talent begins to rage in France.
Does the size of the company matter or does the concept also apply to SMEs?
From the moment they employ at least 1 person, all companies have an employer brand. We have clients ranging from 20 to 50,000 employees. Some organisations are more aware of the employer brand than others, and show various degrees of, formalisation, structure, sharing, and performance. Not only is the size of the company important, but other criteria such as the business segment, the positions offered, territorial presence, organisational structure (headquarters, offices, network), and especially growth potential, are also key features.