Today’s employers are operating in a competitive talent market, which is why 72.8% of companies are struggling to find relevant candidates. This, paired with the fact that 78% of candidates will look into a company’s reputation before applying for a job, makes it clear that having a strong employer brand is more important than ever.
One of the best ways to invest in your employer brand is to introduce a shareable recognition program into your organization. In this post, we’ll explain exactly what a shareable recognition program is and break down the ways one can help you strengthen your brand.
What is a shareable recognition program?
A shareable recognition program systematically provides rewards that motivate employees to share their experiences with others. This can be through word-of-mouth, on social media platforms, or within company communication channels. To give you an example: cash rewards aren’t a great option for a shareable recognition program. Receiving a $100 bonus rarely compels employees to tell their friends and family about it or humblebrag on social media. Your employee rewards need to be Instagram-worthy.
On the other hand, experiential rewards are extremely shareable. If you earn a reward to take gourmet cooking classes, go on a yoga retreat in Bali, or fly through the skies in a hot air balloon, chances are that these are experiences you’ll be excited for and want to tell the world about. Recognition programs that encourage this type of sharing can be incredibly powerful when it comes to building your employer brand.
How a shareable recognition program strengthens brand
So what’s the relation between shareable recognition and employer brand exactly? Let’s walk through the impact:
Shareable recognition programs build organic buzz among employees. With Blueboard, the anticipation starts as soon as the employee receives their reward, browses the experience menu, chooses their experience, and works with our Concierge team to plan the logistics. After their experience, employees share photos on social media and tell authentic stories about their experiences. Any time they recount these memories, they’ll associate the positive feelings back with the company, extending that engagement lifeline – which is what we call the afterglow.
All of this continuous buzz contributes positively to building your employer brand. It not only shows off your fun company culture but also demonstrates to potential candidates that you invest in the happiness of your employees and recognize all the hard work they do.
Additional company benefits: One of the benefits of building this buzz is that it produces shareable and authentic employee stories. In addition to being organically captured on social media, you can talk about your recognition program and share employee photos during your onboarding process to get new hires excited about joining your company. You can also post them to your external job sites or you can use the assets during leadership meetings.
Encourages employee advocacy
When employees love where they work, they become the company’s most enthusiastic ambassadors. Given that organizations with employee recognition programs have a 31% lower voluntary turnover rate, a shareable recognition program is a great way to keep employees engaged and happy. As a result, these employees will feel inspired to go out and tell their networks about your organization and the incredible work culture, which gives your brand a boost.
Additional company benefits: Having these “employee evangelists” can be extremely advantageous for your organization. For instance, they can provide testimonials for the company website, capture stories for the company blog, and help bring in more referrals for your organization – which, as research shows, comes with many benefits as well.
Differentiates your company
65% of employees haven’t received any form of recognition for their work in the last year. Given this, having a recognition program in place automatically differentiates your company because it tells candidates that – unlike many companies – you value your people and recognize their hard work. Giving shareable recognition rewards also differentiates your brand because you’re breaking away from the status quo of cash bonuses and giving employees something that’s genuinely meaningful to them.
Additional company benefits: By differentiating yourself from the competition, you also have a much higher chance of attracting top talent to your organization. In today’s competitive market, this can be the factor that determines whether you fill an open role or not.
A case study: Glaukos
Our client Glaukos has done an amazing job creating a shareable recognition program that bonds employees and creates a more positive company culture. The HR team at Glaukos was faced with a challenge as the company embarked on their IPO – they wanted to maintain their culture and find a meaningful way to recognize the employees who had years of service under their belts. So Blueboard stepped in to create a buzz-worthy, shareable platform for employer branding.
In honor of their CEO, Tom Burns, and inspired by the memorable “Flat Stanley Adventures” of the 90s, Glaukos created “Flat Tom”; a paper figure modeled after Tom that employees were encouraged to bring on their Blueboard adventures. As photos come in, the Glaukos team shares these through a dedicated Instagram account, @FlatTomsAdventures. Flat Tom has now been everywhere from the streets of Australia to the bedside of a Glaukos employee’s newborn baby.