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EMPLOYER branding, whether developed through through social media, career portals, company newsletter or more formal corporate policies, or is a key component to the success of any supply chain agribusiness.
Good or bad, how a company represents its culture can have a real impact in a number of areas. From talent acquisition to earnings performance, a company’s reputation as an employer can have a major impact on its long-term success.
So is it time we started to pay attention to and strengthen our employer brand?
Building and maintaining an attractive employer brand is a powerful way for a company to gain a competitive edge when it comes to recruiting and retaining high-calibre employees, delivering a better skilled, more productive workforce.
Here are some tips on shaping, communicating and nurturing an employer brand:
Discover what your employees are saying
A confidential staff survey is a great way to understand more about what your employees think of your current employer brand. What would they say to their friends about the company? What do they think are the best things about working there? What makes your company different to other employers in the beef industry?
Then use this feedback to help develop the messages you are looking to portray. Your employer brand should accentuate the positives, but it also needs to be realistic and the opinions of your employees and customers will help to shape this.
Make positive changes
Look at the results from the staff survey and start to make any positive changes needed. Share the results and action plans openly with employees. Things won’t happen overnight, but if they can see developments taking place they are more likely to stay on the journey with you. This will help you to hold-on to the talent you already have. A company with a high staff turnover is also one of the key things which is likely to raise concerns among new recruits.
Find great employee stories
Real life stories of people progressing and thriving in your business are one of the strongest assets to promoting an employer brand. Find the success stories and create case studies on them. Look to highlight how they’ve progressed through different roles in the business, how they’ve developed as a person, their career ambitions, and how they play an essential part in how the business operates. Promoting genuine examples demonstrates clear evidence of the types of opportunities available to other people and gives a real feel for what it is like to work for the organisation.
A picture tells a thousand words
Don’t rely on stock photography to portray life in your organisation. Ask somebody you know who’s handy with a camera to capture some quality images of real people at work for your professional platforms such as your website, and recruitment advertising. These can be complemented with candid shots taken by team members during smoko breaks, or during a staff barbecue down by the river, for example, for the likes of social media. Images can really help to paint a picture of an agribusiness company to a potential employee.
If your business has a website, look at adding a dedicated careers and recruitment section, and populate it with engaging content. Include your organisation’s values so people can see if they fit with their own. Outline how you like to work, the company culture and the organisational structure. These all help potential recruits to understand if they would fit in well.
List reasons why people should consider working with you. What makes your business stand out? Is it that its smaller size means greater variety for staff in a typical working day? Is it how you reward employees? Don’t forget to use the case studies of the employee success stories you’ve created and to add details of any progression and/or training opportunities available, such as access to a Low Stress Stock Handling course, or a feedlot stockmanship course.
Many people automatically expect a company to have a social media presence these days, and this is likely to be one of the first places they visit when looking for information about a business. It’s a great opportunity to provide a behind-the-scenes glimpse of the business. Review your social media activity to see if it reflects the culture of the organisation and whether it is used to full effect to highlight employee success stories and fun initiatives. Trust employee ambassadors to get involved with your social media activity and to add ‘real life’ voices to the conversation.
Test your candidate experience
Try going through your recruitment process as if you were a candidate. People have been attracted by the brand you have promoted, but if the recruitment process they go through doesn’t live up to this, they could still change their mind. How are applications responded to? How easy is it to apply? What information do they receive? What is the interview process like? What feedback is provided if candidates aren’t selected?
Embed the brand into everyday life
To be most effective, an employer brand needs to become a way-of-life. The leadership and management team – however large or small – need to be committed to the brand and lead by example. Continually look for ways to remind employees why they bought into your company in the first place. Deliver on any promises made regarding recognition, reward and progression, and ensure your brand runs consistently throughout your approach to people management and internal communications.
It is good practice to continue to ask employees for ongoing feedback. As new generations enter the workforce there may be a change in needs and a shift in perceptions. Occasional employee surveys will help ensure your employer brand stays agile and remains attractive to new talent and to the current employees you worked hard to attract in the first place.
Strong employer branding will not only get you noticed by top talent but your reputation as an employer can have a real impact on your bottom line.
Source: Meat Processors Pty Ltd – Managed Workforce