Using Employer Branding to recruit, retain and reinvent culture in healthcare
Job seekers want to be engaged in their workplace and believe in the mission of their organization. Organizations, in turn, must embrace their workforce (current and prospective) and offer a culture of innovation, comradery and communication to attract and retain the best talent pool. Technology giants have long used the tool of Employer Branding to enhance their internal culture and communications, but in the ever-changing world of healthcare it is more important than ever for hospitals, health systems and private practices to focus brand development internally as well as externally.
Because employees are brand ambassadors in their roles of caregivers, being able to live and believe in the brand of a company is critical to extending the well-crafted brand directly to patients, as well as their friends and family. Using the same tools of a traditional brand campaign can yield strong results for a healthcare system wanting to strengthen its corporate reputation and attractiveness to job seekers with a proactive Employer Branding Strategy.
Employer Branding as a concept
A strong, consistent brand is an enormously important part of an overall marketing strategy. Done effectively, it is communicated throughout all levels of stakeholders though internal and external channels. It can serve as the start of a change in culture, internal pride and a clear communication strategy. However, while it has opportunities to speak to internal audiences, and is an obvious tool for external consumers, it may fall short as it related to future job seekers. Done purposefully, employer branding can help fill those gaps and extend the product/service brand through specific channels prospects.
Why do I need an employer brand? Isn’t it just the same as my BRAND?
Employer branding is specifically directed towards employment and characterizes the organization’s identity as an employer. It is designed to distinguish the organization from competitors in the job market compared to more traditional competitors in the service/product market. Oftentimes, the same set of tools can be used to communicate an employer brand. Social media is especially effective because it empowers current employees to advocate to future team members. Successful companies have created job related hashtags, events and social media frames to share the internal culture of an organization. Not only does it provide inexpensive and nimble communication, it also is a popular medium in the largest category of job seekers in healthcare … millennials.
Employer Branding in healthcare
The concept of Employer Branding may be more important in Healthcare than in other industries due to two unique characteristics of this field. First, there is a powerful relationship between the employee as a worker and the employee as a patient themselves (or a member of the family to become a patient). In many markets, even with the rise of consumerism in healthcare, patients have limited choices in terms of choosing a hospital. Employees need to feel good about their employer not only as a team member, but also as a potential patient. The same is also true in reverse. Today’s patients (or family members of patients), may be tomorrow’s job seekers.
Secondly, healthcare is subject to more public scrutiny and easily available information, good or bad, though reviews and surveys. Medicare regulations make patient quality and reviews easily accessible, and the rise of reputation services specific to healthcare (and the public’s comfort level using them) means there are more avenues for public commentary than ever before. While other industries have to deal with Google reviews and Yelp listings, the Healthgrades and Vitals scores provide additional directories to shop and manage.
Connecting brand development and brand assets to the employer level is paramount to recruiting the best talent, keeping team members engaged and delivering exceptional care to patients. Wondering if your internal brand is working? We’ve put together 5 quick tips to consider while accessing your internal branding.
Ten Adams helps our clients develop brand campaigns that deliver to stakeholders near and far, internal and external, young and old.
If you’re interested in taking your internal brand to the next level or researching what brand you’re projecting into the workplace, contact Jennifer Horton, VP of Strategy. We’re here to help.