12 Employer Branding Metrics for HR to Track

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12 Employer Branding Metrics for HR to Track

Your organization’s employer brand has the power to attract the right caliber of candidates for your talent acquisition and ultimately determine whether they will apply for your positions. But as the adage goes, you can’t manage what you don’t measure. Employer branding metrics are the key to understanding your employer brand’s influence. Let’s dive into the twelve employer branding metrics you need to know.

What are employer branding metrics?
How to measure employer branding: Metrics examples

What are employer branding metrics?

An employer brand is a reflection of an organization’s personality, and it makes an impression on potential talent during their candidate journey. It is crucial for recruiting quality hires within a competitive job market. 

Some common goals of employer branding include:

  • Reaching qualified candidates and attracting top talent
  • Building a strong reputation as a desirable employer above competitors
  • Lowering the cost per hire by attracting more suitable applicants
  • Cultivating a better work environment to enable employee satisfaction and retention.

Making the most of an employer brand requires consistent monitoring, measurement, and refinement. Employer branding metrics provide HR teams with a quantifiable way to track the impact of their employer branding efforts, substantiate the costs and resources, and improve their employer branding strategy

12 Employer Branding Metrics to Know

How to measure employer branding: Metrics examples

Employer branding cannot be gauged by one metric alone, but there is also no universal set of metrics that work for all organizations. Instead, focus on identifying the right combination of metrics for your company that will provide valuable insights about your employer branding efforts based on the specific goals of your strategy. 

These twelve employer branding metrics can be used to measure employer branding:

1. Candidate NPS 

Providing a positive candidate experience reinforces your recruiting efforts. Gain insights from candidates about their recruitment experience by gathering anonymous feedback during the recruitment process. 

The candidate net promoter score results indicate how job candidates experience your organization and how likely they are to recommend applying for positions at your company. The score gives you valuable insight into how candidates perceive your employer brand.

A Candidate NPS asks a single question that must be answered using a score. For example:

“Using a 0-10 scale, how likely would you be to recommend [company] to a friend or colleague?”

Respondents are then grouped according to the numbers.

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  • “Promotors” rate a 9 or 10
  • “Passives” rate a 7 or 8 
  • “Detractors” rate a 6 or lower

Passives’ responses are neutral and are only included as part of the overall number of respondents. The calculation is: 

(Number of Promoters – Number of Detractors) / (Number of Respondents) x 100 

Your Candidate NPS will be a number from -100 to 100:

  • Any positive score is good
  • A score between 30 and 70 is great
  • Anything higher than 70 is considered excellent.

Measuring your Candidate NPS gives you a snapshot of candidate sentiment about your company. It also provides a point of reference for comparison after you fine-tune your recruiting methods. A score that increases with each new NPS calculated will indicate positive views of your employer brand.

2. Employee referral rate

Current employees referring people within their network for open positions aids in expanding your pool of qualified candidates and can also indicate confidence in your employer brand. 

Employees will usually only be willing to recommend a position at their company when they are happy with the work environment and the organization. They may also believe the potential hire has the right qualifications to be a strong contributor and uphold the company culture. A good fit will lead to higher employee retention rates. 

A referred candidate also simplifies and sometimes speeds up the recruiting process. According to a Glassdoor report, employee referrals result in a higher number of accepted job offers. 

LinkedIn report also indicated that candidates trust a company’s employees 3 times more than the company itself to provide credible information on the working environment.

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By analyzing your employee referral program data, you can understand whether employees are willing to advocate for you. High referrals of suitable candidates and a high number of accepted job offers indicate that your employer brand is working internally and externally.

3. Cost per hire 

Recruitment is a significant HR expense. There are multiple costs associated with hiring, like advertising costs, purchasing assessments, and employment agencies fees. And there is also the cost of time spent by HR and hiring managers in screening and interviewing applicants.

Strengthening your employer brand can lead to lowering your cost per hire. For example, Harvard Business Review found in a survey that companies with a poor reputation needed to offer a 10% higher salary than companies with a strong employer brand. According to LinkedIn, a strong employer brand can lead to a 50% cost-per-hire reduction and even half the time it takes to hire.  

4. Social engagement

Social media continues to provide a means for people to vet and connect with potential employers. In fact, 52% of candidates first seek out the company’s sites and social media accounts to learn more about an employer.

Organizations can leverage social media platforms to reach candidates and provide a positive impression of why to consider them as a favored employer. A strong social media presence also expands your reach and increases exposure to your employer brand.  

Track the number of likes, shares, and followers to measure whether your employer brand exposure is growing and appealing to the market. Positive or negative engagement with your content provides an understanding of how followers view your brand.

5. Number of open applications or expressions of interest

Candidates come to you when your company has a strong employer brand. Positioning your company as a desirable employer will increase open applications and expressions of interest. 

Monitor the number of interested job seekers reaching out to HR. Track whether this number increases or declines. This will provide insight into whether your employer branding efforts resonate with job seekers. 

6. Career page analytics

Your website career page is not just a place to list your open positions. It also provides the perfect opportunity to promote brand awareness by showcasing your company values, work environment, and employee benefits.

Understanding visitor behavior on your career page will help you target your employer branding efforts. You can gather statistics from site traffic, such as:

  • Total number of views
  • Visitor source (Do people come directly from your corporate page or via your social media?)
  • Duration of visits
  • Amount of applications completed
  • Bounce rate (Number of visits that only view 1 page)
  • Candidate conversion (Number of completed applications / total visitors x 100)
  • Drop-off rates (Number of visitors who abandon an application/ total number of initiated applications * 100)

Receiving more applicants sourced through your career page can also reduce your reliance on third parties for recruiting.

7. Candidate quality

In today’s market, high-quality candidates can decide who they want to work for instead of simply finding a job that suits their experience and skills. You want your company to be top of mind when they are looking for their next job. By measuring candidate quality, you can determine whether your employer brand is helping you attract the right type of candidates.

Here are some metrics to use in measuring the quality of your candidates:

  • How many candidates come via referral.
  • The number of candidates selected to be interviewed compared to the total number of candidates.
  • Number of interviews versus the number of employment offers. 
  • Job performance and retention rate of new hires.

Note: An applicants-to-interview ratio above 12% may indicate that you are attracting qualified applicants. Focus on ways to improve your employer brand if your ratio is below 12%.

8. Employer Brand Index 

The Employer Brand Index (EBI) provides you with a bottom-up view of what your employees are saying about your company, whether that is your current employees as well as your past and future employees.

The method, developed by Link Humans, measures 16 employer brand attributes. Data is collected over 3-12 months from multiple social media channels, online forums, and employer review sites posted about the company and measured against the 16 brand attributes. You can then measure your performance across these areas and track your improvement over time.

9. Glassdoor interview experience 

People throughout the world rely on job board sites like Glassdoor. Job seekers visit them to learn about open positions and research what others say about working for different employers. Along with current and past employees who review their employer, candidates can also share details and rate the interviewing process of a particular company. 

Your Glassdoor interview experience rating can provide insight into how interviewees felt about your recruitment process. A high positive interview experience percentage indicates an optimistic view of your employer brand. When people share specifics in their reviews, you can gain additional insight into what works well in your recruitment and what needs to be refined.

10. Offer acceptance rate

The offer acceptance rate calculates the likelihood that someone will accept your job offer. A high offer acceptance rate indicates the effectiveness of your recruitment practices but is also a good indicator of whether your employer brand resonates with potential hires. 

Start tracking your offer acceptance rate so that when you take steps to improve your employer brand, you can measure your efforts against this metric. Additionally, collect feedback from candidates who turn down the opportunity to work for your organization to understand why. You’ll be able to learn whether people have unrelated reasons for rejecting the offers or if there is a prevailing perception about your company.

11. Candidate demographics

Building a diverse workforce starts with attracting varied applicants. Are you reaching people from diverse backgrounds? If so, it signals that your employer brand is communicating an inclusive atmosphere that will be attractive to different types of people.

One way you can measure this is by conducting anonymous candidate surveys to collect data on your candidates’ gender, race, and ethnicity. 

If your candidate demographics consistently reflect the same pool of applicants, it’s time to broaden your employer branding efforts. Seek out any subtle bias in your messaging and then weave in different perspectives. This can help you access the untapped talent you’re missing out on.

12. ROI of employer branding

We’ve established that employer branding is essential to driving top candidates to your company, but how can you illustrate to senior executives the value that employer branding drives for your organization? What is the return on investment that a good reputation provides? 

To calculate the ROI, consider where costs have decreased due to the impact of an employer branding strategy. 

For example: 

X increased applications or Y increased conversions means saving Z dollars.

However, with this approach, it is still tricky to determine whether your employee branding initiatives were directly responsible for these cost savings. 

Measuring your ROI will also be dependent on your specific business objectives. For example, if you have to fill only a handful of vacancies each year, you would not use the number of applicants metric to calculate your ROI. If the quality of hire, however, was an important factor for your company, then measuring the quality of hire would not be calculated.

You can also calculate the ROI by comparing the costs of your employer branding initiatives with how areas of the business have benefited. 

Add all the costs associated with the initiative, such as purchasing digital tools, developing materials, and the time devoted by the social media manager to build a presence on social media, etc.

To determine the benefits of your employer branding efforts, consider the improved turnover and retention rates or whether recruitment is more efficient or effective in hiring suitable candidates. You can also gather data from the other metrics we’ve listed above. 

Once you have these numbers, an ROI calculation can determine whether the value offsets the cost of your employer branding initiatives. The percentage can be calculated as follows:

ROI employer branding = ((Financial value – Total costs) / Total costs) x 100

To conclude

Focus on the metrics relevant to your company and its employer branding goals. For example, if your objective is to reduce talent acquisition costs, then cost per hire and ROI of employer branding are good metrics to track. 

You can also apply the insights you gain from these metrics to improve your employer branding initiatives. Converting the measured results into practical actions will put your organization on the path to becoming an employer of choice.

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