What is your business like as an employer? It’s one thing to build a company culture at a traditional-style office or brick-and-mortar establishment. It’s trickier when it comes to remote or eCommerce businesses since it’s difficult to build company culture among a scattered workforce. In this article, we’ll be navigating the world of employer branding for remote retailers.
Company culture is what defined a working environment. This has changed a lot in recent years, with employees suffering from burnout and seeking to create a balance between work and home life. Employers who have a negative working environment where employees are not well taken care of can earn a business a bad reputation and end up affecting their bottom line.
The solution has been to work on creating an employer brand. By identifying the vision for how you want a business to run behind the scenes, you’re all to put structures in place to see that come to life. However, much like ‘vanity metrics’ are a thing of the past for marketers (who placed popularity in the form of likes and followers over and above actual engagement), employers are having to develop an authentic company culture that goes beyond the vanity elements.
What are vanity benefits? Bean bags. The latest generation gets a lot of flack for their affinity for having standing desks and bean bag seating, but the principle is that making the workplace ‘fun’ is not enough and it is not the solution. In fact, in some cases, this can erode the professionalism and productivity within a workplace. It’s great to offer benefits to your employees, but these need to be valuable.
With the dire circumstances that many people are facing around the world, having medical aid benefits, for example, would mean more than having access to a foosball table at work. The first step to having a good and solid employer brand is that it needs to be genuine, developed for the sake of your employees, rather than a PR stunt to protect your business in the public eye.
So, what makes a good working environment in today’s age? Going beyond fair working conditions includes having optimal structures and policies in place. Structures refer to the hierarchy and systemic operations of a business. This includes the ways in which management manages employees. This is especially important in remote working conditions since the lack of physical proximity can result in micromanagement, for example. The policies in place include things like the expectation of working overtime, the leave days granted, and so on.
There are many ways to structure remote working teams to ensure productivity goals are met and employees are happy. For many, working from home is ideal and has its benefits. The business’s way of finding ways to connect these teams and inspire camaraderie without having everyone under one roof forms part of your employer brand. For example, having ‘coffee break’ catch-up meetings between workers, and topics that bring people across the geographical divide together. You can be creative with this, whether it comes down to following a sports tournament or having a weekly yoga session that people can join in on. Sharing tips on how to create a dedicated workspace and finding proactive ways to take periodic breaks can greatly improve the functioning and performance of your team.
Your best bet is to work on your employer brand and to ensure that your business is invested in it. This will help give direction and ensure that the company culture built is intentional and under control. With this, you can also manage your reputation as an employer and keep your employees happy, which is crucial for top-tier performance. Your HR team should head this up, from introducing the binding ideas to remote workers to checking in on them over time.
This is especially important for remote offices and eCommerce businesses since you can attract talent from all over the world to work for you. To entice them, you need a strong employer brand. Furthermore, remote working can be daunting since you are essentially at home and alone while learning about a new business and the way it works. Having remote learning and training available makes this process smoother is key. By having ongoing encouragement for remote workers, you’ll also keep these employees motivated.
We’ve mentioned all of the ways to carry out employer branding for your remote workforce and the benefits it has, but remember that it doesn’t stop there. Creating company cultures that are positive and paying off should be celebrated. Communicating the achievements of your team is an important element of employer branding, especially when it comes to remote workers who may feel isolated. Create marketing campaigns for this to share this as part of your business’s message, and share it on your website and social media channels. When this works well, you’ll also be able to inspire employees to provide external messaging relating to your company as well, which extends the reach of these efforts, which is also an important part of networking.
Businesses, remote businesses especially, have found their footing when it comes to the world of virtual work. With this comes the establishment of new traditions and conditions that improve working environments and employee satisfaction - which, by default, improves performance too. There are many benefits, both internal and external, of having a positive company culture and employer brand. It can improve the caliber of talent your business attracts, as well as improve the customer perceptions of your business. It can also add an element of fun to #WTF.
Ready to Build Your Brand as an Employer?
Speak with us at Nexa. We’re a creative digital agency with a remote workforce that extends across 4 continents! We’ve developed our employer brand that now speaks for itself, and developed our HR division to help businesses like yours transform your HR department to help improve and grow your business in the long term.