COVID-19 inspires a joining of forces: Internal communications and employer branding

By Gabriela Torres

June 17, 2020 

This article is also available in Spanish.

While many employees across the globe are working from home, the role of internal communications and employer branding has been strengthening to deliver what people need to make the best of the situation that companies currently face. The ‘new normal’ is constantly evolving, and that is the only certainty we have. While a lot of organisations aren’t currently hiring, they will be in the future, and their employer brands need to be strong to get them through this challenging time and whatever the future holds.

Employees are one of the most important targets for both processes and should be treated as such. That’s why IC has a great opportunity to partner with employer branding, as both areas have a scope of action that involves the whole organisation and can deliver what the company needs to keep functioning well.

Keeping that in mind, there are four aspects of employer branding whose efficiency can be amplified by IC, especially nowadays with most of the workforce in Europe planning to work from home until next year.

Employee lifecycle
While HR, leaders and other areas own the employee lifecycle, IC can impact every one of the touchpoints. How? First, by creating conversations through different channels, whether they’re technological, personal or physical. Now more than ever, since every company is trying out new ways of working, conversations need to be encouraged and celebrated. Second, these conversations need to be transparent and provide feedback about what’s working, what’s not and how those matters can be approached. 

EVP communication
A company’s EVP (employee value proposition) comes to life through employees’ experiences; it’s safe to say there’s no EVP without people. IC is in a unique position that enables it to capture stories and sentiments of employees about the value they’re receiving from their employers. Feeding these stories to employer branding, that otherwise could go untold, is one of the superpowers IC has to help create a unique brand that attracts the right people for the job.

Employees as a channel
Ambassadors are one of the most effective ways to build an employer brand, especially now when other forms of communication could be perceived as tone-deaf or inappropriate. The companies that are being seen as top-notch employers, even if they’re having to let people go, are letting their people tell their unfiltered stories of work in times of COVID-19, whatever those stories entail. These organisations are seeing the ROI of this strategy maximised on their employer brands.
Referral programmes
This is a popular employer branding tool because it has excellent results and provides hires of quality, at a relatively low cost. Keeping it as a priority for employees is essential, and IC can help achieve this by embracing it as part of its strategy. Not only are the benefits great for the organisation but for the people as well, and this is where employee communications play a key role.

And it doesn’t have to stop there. Every company is unique and has many dimensions to its culture and ways of working; therefore, the chances of collaboration between IC and employer branding are endless and a prime opportunity to effectively differentiate from other organisations competing for the same talent.

Gabriela Torres is a corporate communications, employer branding, content creation and digital marketing specialist with experience in the manufacturing, education, health and consulting industries. She’s currently based in Ecuador and is working to
showcase the benefits of communications, marketing and branding for small to medium businesses through storytelling on a LinkedIn page called Once upon a time (Érase una vez in Spanish) while helping them create content to connect with their target audiences. Her purpose is to create the lollipop moments that Drew Dudley speaks about in his ‘Everyday Leadership’ Ted Talk, by amplifying organisations’ positive impact in employees’ lives through EX.