Employment Branding: Resources to Get the Recognition You Deserve!

Steve Gifford Always Be Closing, Business Development, Communication, Employee Communications, Employment Branding and Culture, Recognition, Steve Gifford

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We at FOT are focusing on your EVP this month, culminating in the Bootstrap Your Employment Brand the FOT Way webinar  (tickets are still available, but going fast!).  As great as you might think your employment brand is, though, external validation helps with these things.

You’ve seen those “Best Places to Work” lists and awards, right?  Newspapers and magazines run them from time to time, and I had always thought that the content of the list was based on the organization’s exhaustive survey of employers in their marketplace.  Nothing that I, as an HR pro, could influence, just something that happens if you’re a big player.

It turns out that getting considered for this list is very easy and relatively inexpensive.  Plus, if you don’t submit yourself, you will not get on the list!  (Don’t tell your boss that, though; submit, and then play it off like you knew a guy).

So, if you’re looking to add some of these accolades to your Careers page, and generate some publicity for your brand, take a look at these organizations:

Best Companies.  These folks run “Best Places to Work in…” lists in probably two dozen states.  Best Companies asks you a bunch of questions, and then sends a survey to employees to complete as well.  You have to pay a few hundred dollars, and you get the survey results whether or not you’re considered for the list.  They are a partnership with local newspapers and organizations, so while they do the legwork, the New York list is released as a survey from New York State SHRM, and the Texas list is from Texas Monthly.  I can also tell you from personal experience that participating does not guarantee you victory; however, we did get good insights on things we should improve for next year.

Top Workplaces.  I think these guys are a competitor with the group above, with a little more focus on selling their survey tool.  Their survey is free, and generally covers regions instead of whole states.  Again, they partner with newspapers to brand the survey.  If you have more than 1,000 employees, you can also take part in their national list.

Great Places to Work.  This one is the big time.  They generate Fortune Magazine’s 100 Best Companies to Work For list (for employers with more than 1,000 employees), along with Entrepreneur Magazine’s Best Small Businesses to Work For list (for those with fewer than 1,000 employees).  Also a free list to get on, and a ton of publicity if you make the grade.

The American Business Awards.  The “Stevie” awards are not specifically employment branding, but are good visibility.  There are a ton of categories you can be nominated for, and you will have to pay for your nomination.  And your trophy.  You’ll also need to write an essay that is voted on by judges; however, there’s no employee survey required.  What’s notable here is that you can nominate your whole company, or a person or department within your company.  If you’ve got a sales director with a big ego (I’m told they exist), and would like to give them that extra oomph, submit them for this.  And charge it to their department.  (I should also mention here that I was a volunteer judge for these awards this year, and divisions of my company won four “Best Company” trophies this year).

Note that all of these awards work on an annual basis, so you’ll want to put a reminder in your calendar for when the window opens up on the next round.  And good luck!

Before you tell the world about your employment brand, make sure you’re doing everything you can for your brand internally as well.  Need some help on how? Register for the Bootstrap Your Employment Brand the FOT Way webinar.