Q&A: How do I help create a great employer brand to retain and attract talent?

Ankur Patel, Director of Product Marketing, Zenefits
Dec 8, 2022

In 2021, we saw almost 50 million people quit their jobs in what was dubbed as “The Great Resignation.” In this war for talent, how do organizations create an exceptional brand to attract and retain talent? Ankur Patel, Product Marketing Manager at TriNet Zenefits, joins the show to share his insight. Additional Resources: Order your […]

In 2021, we saw almost 50 million people quit their jobs in what was dubbed as “The Great Resignation.” In this war for talent, how do organizations create an exceptional brand to attract and retain talent?

Ankur Patel, Product Marketing Manager at TriNet Zenefits, joins the show to share his insight.

Additional Resources:

Ask a SMB Workplace Question and get featured on POPS! The People Ops podcast.

On this episode, you’ll hear:

  • [01:55] Brand building is emotional
  • [02:30] Lead with your values
  • [03:42] Share your story
  • [05:08] Find your brand ambassadors
  • [06:50] Don’t underestimate tone and voice


Hey everyone, it’s Encore with benefits here. I’m on the product and marketing side of the house, so I get to speak with dozens of customers and potential customers every week, and it’s always interesting to learn what all these amazing experts in their. Are actually bringing to the table and the challenges that they’re facing and how they’re actually solving some of those problems.

So while we’re tuning in today, One of the questions that came up was, how do I help create a great employer brand to retain and attract talent? And that’s extremely critical today, knowing that there continues to be this, uh, this war on talent where. In 2021, we’ve seen almost 50 million folks quit their jobs in what was dubbed is this the The Great Resignation, and it kind of tapered off into 2022.

But what’s been established is this new employee expectation and this framework around reciprocating value. So employees recognize the value they’re providing to employers and now are more cognizant of identifying if that’s reciprocated throughout that relationship, and it’s starting to become that much more apparent that employers do need to curate a brand and an identity to help attract.

Talent in the door and kind of keep them there for for sure as well. And one of the things that always comes top of mind when you’re building a brand, first and foremost, is that brand building is emotional. So you’re really tugging on hard strings. That’s what brands are about. They’re trying to elicit emotion, the appropriate emotion to drive whoever it is.

To align to that company and take an action. And in this case, it’s trying to get someone in the door to join your company, to join your mission and contribute to your company’s success. One of the biggest things I always hear from customers and HR leaders and marketers is honestly leading with your values.

You yourself have identified as an organization. Your why and what is most important to you to drive success and curating and championing your values helps almost pre-qualify and self-select folks that align to those. If I’m. Looking kind of perusing jobs and I come across a really interesting role that aligns with what I’d like in my next role, and that on that same application, I review the company values where they don’t align.

Then it’s already to me, a red flag that I may not be the best contributor here. If they do align, then it’s a great green light saying I should definitely apply. These folks are speaking the same way I speak, and they’re obviously very aligned around the same mission or the value investments that I wanna provide beyond just tactically filling a role.

I’d also say to share your story, so there’s so many companies out there that start from. A really amazing story or background, and I know for myself as an employee, that’s really what motivates me. I’m always looking for a problem to solve, and I’m always super interested in understanding contextually, why did we even start this organization?

What was the catalyst to wanting to create a bakery or a bike shop? One of my favorite customers owns a bike shop and. Love talking to the owner, and the background is essentially that individual went through some physical hardships, ended up falling in love with biking and just being outdoors through biking.

Versus the impact running or some other styles of exercise or physical fitness would bring and essentially just wanted to share that found themselves so in love with it, wanted to kind of spread the love, start a community of bikers and it’s such an awesome story where if I was. In the market to go work at a bike shop, and I read that.

I would definitely be more inclined to apply there and at least want to have a conversation with the individual that ran this. The other thing is thinking about your brand and your brand ambassadors, like your general brand as far as a company, your logo, how your marketing, where you’re marketing, what channels you’re using to communicate.

So when you think of. Trying to recruit talent. There are so many different areas to promote your brands. There’s so many different job boards out there, so many channels. So specifically choosing the ones that make the most sense and align to what it is that you’re going for. There’s a lot of the top line macro outlets out there, like posting on LinkedIn or Indeed, like a lot of these, like really well known job boards.

Versus there’s also a ton of microchannels. You can start leveraging your local chamber of commerce. If your business is closed to the local school. Could be a partnership that could be forged there to bring a lot of super hungry talent. In the door fresh out of school or fresh out of something they’ve just learned or kind of graduated into.

There are definitely many, many other ways to start to create your brand. I would say those are the stepping stones to at least build a solid foundation in the direction you want to get to. The last thing I’ll leave you with is even thinking about. Something as subtle as your tone and voice. What are your job titles even named?

What are the naming conventions altogether? Those definitely speak wonders to the culture you’re trying to build. I’ve seen from my style of role, I’ve seen anything traditional from product marketing to marketing Ninja to, you know, X factor and. Some of those are extremely attractive job titles and some of those may not be aligned to, you know, what I’m looking for or my specific taste and how I’d articulate what my role does.

So, Everything from the macro of where you’re posting to something as small as your tone or how you’re communicating or how you’re labeling a job function definitely is something you should be taking into account. And like I said, I would 100% underscore speaking to your values and really, really championing your story because as an SMB.

There are plenty of phenomenal stories, the ups and downs that all SMBs face, the spark that catalyzed even wanting to go down a certain. Industry or solving a certain problem is always really interesting to help draw passion out of your potential candidates and really attract the right ones. Thanks so much for tuning in.

Again, super excited and appreciative that I even get to be here. Tune in to our next episode.

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