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Why Your Employee Value Proposition is Key to Attract Top Talent

Unemployment in Ireland this year fell below 5% for the first time since the financial crisis and the struggle for companies to retain top talent has never been so intensive. According to CIPD’s 2022 HR Practices in Ireland survey, holding onto staff is a major issue for HR, with 43% reporting an increase in voluntary employee turnover in the last year.

This can impact an organisation in a multitude of ways, from morale to quality of output, but it can also have a serious effect on the bottom line. Research from Centri HR in 2022 showed that it costs an average of 20% percent of a yearly salary to replace a professional leaving the business, up to 213% to replace an executive.

If your organisation wants to recruit and retain great people, having a strong employee value proposition (EVP) in place is key. Gartner’s latest quarterly Global Talent Monitor report found that organisations that effectively deliver on their EVP can reduce annual employee turnover by 69% and increase new hire commitment by nearly 30%.

Not sure what your EVP is? Here, we’ll break down the basics and highlight some amazing examples to help you define and develop an EVP that will give you a competitive edge when it comes to attracting and keeping top talent. 

Why Your Employee Value Proposition is Key to Attract Top Talent
EVP: What Is It and Why Is It Important

First things first: what is an EVP? Harvard Business Review defines it as “the qualities that make you special to your employees” while CIPD says it “describes what an organisation stands for, requires and offers as an employer.” Basically, what makes your company a great place to work, from perks and benefits to company culture and career growth opportunities.

Even if you don’t have your EVP formally written down somewhere, it already exists — and how you package and promote it is important. Not only does it play a role in retention by motivating and engaging existing employees but it also makes your organisation attractive to top candidates and helps them figure out whether they’ll be a good fit. 

Here are five main elements that your EVP should address:

1. Compensation

Money isn’t everything. Employees care about the entire compensation package, including health insurance, annual leave and pension packages, in addition to salary and bonuses. 

2. Work

Similarly, today’s workforce values a positive work environment as much as a paycheque. If your organisation offers flexible hours, work-life balance, autonomy and recognition, make sure it’s highlighted in your EVP.

3. Organisation

This might seem obvious but for good reason. It’s important to reference your organisation’s mission, goals and social responsibility as well as achievements, history and future plans, particularly if you’re not a household name. 

4. Opportunity

Candidates and employees alike want to envision their career path and know what opportunities for growth are available, including development, training, feedback and education. 

Why Your Employee Value Proposition is Key to Attract Top Talent
5. People

Employees spend more time with coworkers than with family and friends, and candidates want to know who they’ll be working with. That’s why your people and company culture must be part of your value proposition. 

In a nutshell, your EVP should align with your organisation’s mission, vision and values, set you apart from the competition and target the type of candidate you want to attract, recruit and retain. 

5 Great EVP Examples 

Need some inspiration? We’ve compiled a list of thought-starters from top companies to get your creative juices flowing:

1. Google

“There’s no one kind of Googler, so we’re always looking for people who can bring new perspectives and life experiences to our teams. If you’re looking for a place that values your curiosity, passion and desire to learn, if you’re seeking colleagues who are big thinkers eager to take on fresh challenges as a team, then you’re a future Googler.”

2. Hubspot

“We’re dedicated to building an inclusive culture where employees can do their best work. Feedback, research and our own employees show that the number one way to do that is by being flexible. Giving HubSpotters the freedom and flexibility to create their own work-life balance builds trust in our company, but it’s also just the right thing to do. That’s why flexibility is at the core of our benefits and culture, from family planning to financial planning.”

3. Salesforce

“We are an Ohana of Trailblazers — inclusive of our customers, employees, partners and communities. We take care of each other, have fun together and work collaboratively to make the world a better place.”

4. Stripe

“At Stripe, we’re looking for people with passion, grit and integrity. You’re encouraged to apply even if your experience doesn’t precisely match the job description. Your skills and passion will stand out — and set you apart — especially if your career has taken some extraordinary twists and turns. At Stripe, we welcome diverse perspectives and people who think rigorously and aren’t afraid to challenge assumptions.” 

5. Shopify

“We’re Shopify. Our mission is to make commerce better for everyone — but we’re not the workplace for everyone. We thrive on change, operate on trust and leverage the diverse perspectives of people on our team in everything we do. We solve problems at a rapid pace. In short, we get shit done.”

If there’s one thing that each of these examples have in common, it’s that the value propositions all point out that the company is looking for a diverse workforce with a broad set of skills in exchange for a positive work environment. When defining your organisation’s EVP, consider the type of candidate that you want to target and what gives your company an edge over the competition. 

Ireland’s war for talent shows no signs of slowing down any time soon and with 84% of Irish companies reporting skills shortages, according to CIPD, a strong EVP will go a long way in helping you stand out. Remember, current and prospective employees are looking for more than a paycheque and employers who factor this into their recruitment and engagement strategies will reap the rewards. 

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