West Monroe brand image

The Great Resignation

By now, everyone’s heard of it, and chances are you’ve experienced it as either a manager, coworker, or jobseeker yourself.   The number of workers between ages 30 and 45 considering a job change increased 20 percent between 2020 and 2021, according to the Harvard Business Review[HF1] . Though the worst of the pandemic may be fading, labor participation rates have still not returned to their pre-pandemic levels.

Faced with this talent turbulence, many organizations are revisiting how they’re marketing themselves as an employer. Part of this involves reconsidering the correct relationship between a corporate brand and an employer or recruiting brand. Should they be completely different? If not, how closely should they be aligned?

West Monroe, a digital transformation consultancy, asked DeSantis Breindel to help it address these questions. Through our work with West Monroe, along with engagements with other professional services firms, we’ve identified several principles for optimally leveraging the firmwide brand to support a strong employer brand.

1. Let your corporate brand lead the way.

A brand is the core idea that inspires all you say and do, the filter that focuses your communications so they are consistent, coherent, and compelling. As such, your recruiting messaging should find its roots here.

This doesn’t mean that your communications to current and prospective employees should ignore context. Instead, your corporate brand should be able to flex to emphasize different messages for different audiences, occasions, and media.

For example, West Monroe’s brand pillars were “Born in tech, built for business;” “Empowering people, powering growth;” and “Real results, real impact.” For energy and utilities clients, we recommended West Monroe emphasize “Born in tech, built for business” to drive home the firm’s sector expertise and technological savvy. But for employees and recruits, we turned up the dial on “Empowering people, powering growth.” Just as West Monroe empowers the success of its clients’ people, the firm empowers the success – and growth – of its own employees.

2. Be authentic.

When communicating with recruits, don’t try to be what you aren’t. If you’re a smaller player in your category, for example, don’t try to emulate the big guns. Instead, promote the advantages of working for a smaller organization, whether it’s exposure to senior management or more direct client contact.

West Monroe offers its employees a different value proposition from that of much larger firms: its commitment to the wellness of its people and its community. We recommended West Monroe own this difference by promoting its credentials as a humanizing employer and partner rather than highlighting the size of its staff of number of offices.

3. Engage your current employees.

A B2B brand’s best marketing asset is its people. This is also true in the recruiting space; a company’s career page can tout a supportive and rewarding corporate culture, but this claim means nothing if Glassdoor reviews and social media mentions don’t back it up. Recruiting marketing is a wasted investment without sustained employee engagement initiatives. Promises to new hires can’t be ignored as soon as the ink on the contract is signed. Not only will an unhappy employee’s tenure likely be short, but their conversations about or reviews of their experience will dissuade other talent from joining.

With this in mind, a large portion of West Monroe’s new brand activation was aimed at existing employees. The firm displayed uncommon transparency around the new brand, giving staff a deep dive into its strategy, holding office roadshows, and answering questions. By ensuring that employees were brand evangelists, West Monroe made its own people part of its recruiting efforts.

If any single principle unites these recruitment marketing insights, it’s that the savvy people you want to hire are not easily fooled. In today’s white-hot competition for talent, authenticity and sustained support are the keys to attracting and retaining talent. Brand can play a huge role in these areas as the foundational idea that connects a company’s strengths, defines its culture, and inspires its innovations.

At Large Firms, Empower Employees to Communicate Brand

BlackRock announced last month that it was establishing a new unit within the firm “charged with creating a unified company message and spreading it within the marketplace,” according to an article in Ignites, a Financial Times publication. This unit will ensure that firm messaging was consistent across all key audiences – both internal and external.


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