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You know bad reputations go a long way, even for companies! Being an employer of choice simply means being a place that people would have at the top of their list of places they’d love to work. Believe or not though-there are many companies that people do not want to work. Many companies never think in these terms of how to stand out among their competition, especially when it is a job seeker’s market.

So how can companies be the place where everyone wants to work? Start by focusing on these 3 strategies to become an employer of choice:

Have a mission and values employees can get behind

Sure, your business has a mission and core values, but are they strong enough to motivate employees? It can be easy for a business to let something like this fall by the wayside when you’ve got a million other things to take care of, but it’s important to have a strong foundation. People love to work at places where they can buy into their mission and believe in it. People want to work for companies that are doing something in an area they are passionate about.

Competitive pay and benefits that matter

The best candidates tend to have a few options. Money may not be everything to your ideal candidate, but you still need to make sure that you are in line with their other offers. For what you can’t do in salary, make up for with benefits. Get creative and add some beyond the typical. For example, you could give employees their birthday as a paid holiday. The main pay and benefits are certainly a huge factor and need to be up to par, but the little things can sometimes seal the deal. Another example is remote work flexibility that is hugely popular right now. That may be a preferred benefit for your employee base vs. a higher salary.

Define the culture you want and have it clear in all that you do

Work culture has become so important these days. People want to work somewhere unique, with personality. They’re not looking for your run of the mill office. Think of ways to make your office appealing. Maybe you have a special day where employees can dress a certain way. Maybe you have a culture of idea sharing where everyone’s ideas matter. Maybe you have a culture of self-care where employees have mental health days and check ins. The choice is yours on the type of culture you want to build, but be intentional about it.

Have a great reputation

This is crucial. The best candidates will always do their research before accepting an offer. This means they are searching online forums, social media, google reviews and even asking around to find old employees or even customers that can give them some insight into what working for you will entail. Make sure they only find accurate, positive input because you maintain positive relationships with past employees and customers. They are going to check and you want your reputation to be solid and inviting.

 Being an employer of choice can turn the process of hiring from a nightmare to a dream come true. One of the worst things as a small business owner is to have a job and not be able to fill it because your company is not appealing. Make it your goal to be an employer of choice.

Barbara Mason is a career consultant that brings over 20 years Human Resources experience and has been in senior level roles for Fortune 500 companies. She is the owner and CEO of Career Pathways Consulting and her passion is helping career professionals stay, flow, or go in their career.

To learn more about working with her, visit www.careerpathwaysconsulting.com.

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