When it comes to building a successful company culture and an authentic brand as an employer, the top-most asset for any organisation in this task can be its own employees. Therefore, developing employee advocacy is the key to success in this regard.
True employee advocacy is driven by autonomy, born from a deep sense of trust, appreciation and shared values. It’s about the people who live and breathe the brand. So those who offer that advocacy freely adopt a sense of ownership and proactivity that spans far beyond recruitment or marketing. There are many intangible benefits that can be accrued by developing employee advocacy.
Employees as Influencers
Proud employees who recognise and appreciate the works done by employers can actively promote the business as a great place to work. Besides, they help attract and retain the best talent by acting as influencers. These influencers assist in shaping a strong internal culture. If HR departments support these employees then they can contribute immensely in building a work environment where people want to join.
Authentic Brand Ambassadors
Employee advocacy can create a group of brand ambassadors that money just cannot buy. A personal endorsement can prove more powerful than brand-led marketing alone. Many surveys have suggested that people trust a recommendation from family or friends more than advertising.
Employees as Leaders
The employees, who imbibe and follow the values of the organisation, are the personification of the brand. They are the ones actively involved in workplace socials and community initiatives. They do this because it feels natural and reinforces their own sense of purpose. If companies give employees the necessary free space to improve and contribute to the organisations voluntarily, then they can easily align with the culture and values of the companies. Hence, companies should encourage employees to give suggestions and inspire them to take lead in their respective jobs.
However, employee advocacy can not be built in a day or so. It takes time. For developing employee advocacy, HR leaders need to listen to the employees and create a culture of strong delivery and trust. Creating a framework where employees feel comfortable sharing how they feel for both internal and external purposes will be the key.