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Two individuals in a store - how retailers can win the battle of the brands

How retailers can win the battle of the brands

Tags: Employer Brand

A 41-question employer brand checklist for retail recruitment teams 

If you work in retail recruitment, it probably feels like all you can do to keep your head above water. Let alone find time to step back and work on more strategic projects like employer branding.

But let’s talk about why you must. And then we’ll talk about how you can, with our 41-question employer brand checklist. 

Why employer brand is retail recruiters’ ace in the hole

The average turnover rate for retailers in the UK is 57%. That’s 280% more than the all-industry UK average of 15%. It means more than one in two of your people leave within a year, turning recruitment into a vicious hire-churn-hire-churn cycle.

And that’s before you add seasonal surges, huge volume requirements, eye-watering talent shortages, and massive competition from other retailers. 

Employer brand is a flashing neon exit sign from this maze of reactive retail recruitment. Why? Because, when you build a great employer brand:

  • You don’t have to work as hard to attract candidates. More applicants come to you, bolstering your talent pipeline. 
  • Your offers are accepted more often. When candidates apply to you, not just Another Retail Job Among Hundreds, they’re more likely to say ‘yes’ when you make them an offer. 
  • You spend less recruiting. Building your employer brand involves an initial outlay of time and money. But it means more candidates come to you direct – less money on job boards. And they’re less likely to jump ship for minor wage bumps – less money on bidding wars. 
  • You attract better quality, more loyal applicants. A strong employer brand is a beacon for the people who’ll thrive as part of your pack. So you hire better people and keep them longer too. 

From luxury to mass market, the retail and hospitality industry hinges on its people. 

An incredible restaurant is little without their incredible chef. A fast food chain hinges on having the right people, trained and safe, to deliver against customer demand.

Recruitment has an enormous impact on retailers’ bottom line. The connection between employer brand and customer-facing brand is cast-iron. 

So… let’s talk about how. Here’s an employer brand checklist to get you started. 

Individual in retail stood in shop

How retail recruiters can win the battle of the brands: a checklist

You’re convinced: it’s time to step into the limelight, let your EVP shine, and win the battle of the brands. But what does that actually mean? Here’s an employer brand checklist to keep you on track.

[Job adverts]

  1. Are your job adverts visually eye-catching?
  2. Do your ads use a descriptive and interesting title?
  3. Do your ads include photos and videos?
  4. Is your content digestible, with lots of headers and bullets?
  5. Are your ads accessible for users with different accessibility needs?
  6. Do your ads use inclusive language?
  7. Are your ads reaching your audience where they search for jobs?
  8. Do your adverts capture the unique role?
  9. Do your adverts convey your brand and business? 

HINT: Try covering the logos and identifying info from a handful of job adverts for one of your common roles. Can your team instantly tell which is yours? If not, you’re probably learning into bland boilerplate territory – not employer branding. 

[Careers site]

  1. Is your careers site branded and visually distinct?
  2. Does your careers site include team photos and/or blurbs?
  3. Do your photos represent the diversity of your organisation?
  4. Do your photos represent the range of career options available?
  5. Does your careers site talk authentically about career paths and growth?
  6. Does your site truly capture what candidates get from their career with you?  
  7. Is your careers site accessible and inclusive? 
  8. Does your careers site connect easily to your recruitment process? 
  9. Does your careers site include employee ambassadors? 

HINT: Your careers site is the hub of your employer brand. At its best, a great careers site isn’t just a place where you host jobs. It’s the place that brings your retail organisation to life, from the perspective of potential employees. Tesco’s careers site is an example we love, if you’re looking for inspo. 

[Social media]

  1. Are you active on the social media sites where your candidates are? 
  2. Are your profiles consistent with your careers site and job adverts?
  3. Are your social posts consistent in tone, content, and visual appearance?
  4. Are your social posts recent and profiles active?
  5. Do your employees contribute to your social media presence?
  6. Do your employees contribute consistent with your EVP and brand?
  7. Do you share value-add content that’s fun or interesting, not just job ads?
  8. Do you run and promote broader recruitment campaigns?

HINT: If you use social media in your recruitment toolbox, as most retail recruitment teams should, you need a clear strategy guiding how, when, where, and what to post. The idea is to create a coherent, considered social media presence that brings your employer brand to life.  

[The recruitment journey]

  1. Is the candidate journey across every touchpoint consistent?
  2. Is applying easy and fast?
  3. Is each application and assessment relevant to the job?
  4. Can candidates apply to jobs via mobile?
  5. Can candidates upload documents and images?
  6. Can candidates track the progress of their application easily?
  7. Does every candidate hear back from you?
  8. Is the recruitment process accessible and inclusive?
  9. Are job adverts removed from boards as soon as they’re closed?
  10. Can candidates review and sign contracts online?
  11. Can candidates get job alerts to their phone or inbox?
  12. Do you collect and act on feedback from candidates?
  13. Do you nurture authentic relationships with candidates? 
  14. Is your onboarding consistent and fast?
  15. Can candidates hear from you via SMS or email?

HINT: Although it might not strictly be what you consider when thinking about employer brand, a fast, flexible, convenient candidate experience is a hygiene factor for retail recruitment. Your process says a lot about your brand. Are you clunky, slow, frustrating, and selfish as an employer? Or fast, flexible, considerate, and modern? 

Sounds great… but where do you find time?

Finding time to focus on employer brand can feel impossible. Most retail recruitment teams are recruiting at 100mph constantly: when was the last time you weren’t snowed?

But the right recruitment software can make life a heap easier. 

It’s not a silver bullet. Employer branding is a process. You’ll still need to find time to define your EVP, which can be a big undertaking. And when you’ve done that, there’s still a heap of work needed to actually translate your value prop across your organisation

But good recruitment software should create time and space so you can focus on that stuff. When you automate all the manual, repetitive, boring admin bits of recruiting, you’ll be shocked by how many hours you get back in your day.

Then the right software should support you to showcase your value proposition and brand across the recruitment journey, with practically no effort. Think… automated comms, heaps of templates, flexible multi-media job adverts, one-click job distribution, drag-and-drop landing pages, easy recruitment campaign builders, and so on.

If your current recruitment tech doesn’t meet those standards, it might be time to look for software that can…

Tribepad is the trusted tech ally to smart(er) recruiters everywhere. Combining ATS, CRM, Video Interviewing, and Onboarding, our talent acquisition software is a springboard for faster, fairer, better recruitment for everyone. 

Trusted by retail and hospitality recruitment teams like Pizza Hut, KFC, Subway, Tesco, Superdry, Compass Group, Sodexo, Carpetright, Sofology, and Card Factory, 25 million people in 16 languages use Tribepad. 

Check out how retail pharmacy brand, Well Pharmacy, used Tribepad to build an employer brand that did their fabulous team justice

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