Anyone who has looked for a job will be familiar with the fact that many adverts open with the words “Our Client...” - with no reference to who the employer actually is. As an employer, have you ever wondered how that could be perceived by potential candidates? Does it really matter whether job seekers are being told from the outset who it is that they’re applying to? Or is it acceptable to expect them to wait until they’re further through the process before they find out?
Candidates need clarity
The lack of clarity could certainly be confusing for starters. Some job seekers might immediately view it as a red flag - fearing that the lack of visibility indicates an employer who is hiding a poor reputation.
But it goes way beyond that. Work is a massive part of all our lives, taking up a large proportion of our time. So making the right decision about where to spend that time is hugely important. A job search isn’t a purely logical process, it’s an emotional one too. Candidates will start visualising themselves working at potential employers. And it’s very hard to visualise when you have no idea who the employer actually is. Inevitably, being a jobseeker is a time of uncertainty and the more clarity you can give, the more likely it is that your job advert will attract the right people early on.
And remember that every candidate’s time is valuable too. Is it reasonable to ask them to invest that time putting themselves forward for roles at a company that, it eventually turns out, they aren’t keen to join?
Showcase your organisation
A job advert provides an amazing opportunity to showcase your employer brand and your employee value proposition. Yes, a non-employer branded advert can allude to it. But it cannot truly showcase the full package when one large piece of the jigsaw is missing: who that potential candidate would be working for. And if there’s another role, with an equally attractive package, that does share who the employer is – consider which one the candidate is more likely to put themselves forward for.
Candidates are far more aware of the importance of culture, and of their need to feel aligned to an organisation’s values and to feel that they belong. And in our experience, the majority want to be able to start assessing that match right from the very start. Getting it right is fundamental for successful (and cost- and time-effective) recruitment and of course, by extension, for successful retention too. The employer brand makes an advert stand out and helps to quickly hook in potential applicants who have an interest in the sector or, even better, in the specific company, encouraging more relevant quality applications for the employer.
If you’re a recruiting employer, why would you not do everything possible to give candidates as much information as possible, right from the very start, to help them make good decisions?
Sometimes there’s no choice…
It is important to acknowledge that occasionally there are good reasons behind not saying who the employer is.
For example, it might be the case that the company needs to conduct a search confidentially because of specific circumstances: a senior person might be moving on for instance, and the organisation wants to make progress with their replacement before any official announcements are made. Or an expanding business might not want to broadcast the fact it is taking on new employees if they are trying to avoid alerting competitors to that fact.
But, those kinds of exceptions aside, from both a candidate and an employer perspective there are a lot of reasons why this kind of secrecy is far from ideal.
Transparency attracts the best
Data suggests that 75% of job seekers consider an employer’s brand before applying for a job.
At JVP Group, we are firmly in the camp of employer branding being the right way to go in most instances for both candidates and employers. We believe job seekers need to know who they would be applying for a job with at the outset. It enables them to make informed decisions, it’s transparent, and it draws in the best applicants. If you would like to chat with us to find out more about our approach and how we can work with you to support your recruitment strategy, please do get in contact with us.