EVP - the it factor for your brand

Helena Helsing Mork

What makes your company an attractive workplace? Hopefully, the wages are on par with the rest of the industry, development talks are held regularly and the coffee machine is descaled often enough for the coffee to taste good. Some loyal comrades have been with you for ages, and others are onboarded and dismissed during the same year – but that’s life, right?

Well, but just as Ingemar Stenmark had more luck the more he trained, companies that actively work on their employer brand have more satisfied employees. Another good thing about employees is that we are not satisfied in silence. We like to tell others about our workplace, are proud of what we create and thus attract those who resonate with our culture. This positive spiral is worth its weight in gold. Literally. So, how do you do it? Time to design the company’s employer value proposition.

The tool that addresses your most important asset; your employees

An EVP (Employer Value Proposition) summarises the company’s strategy to reach and retain the employees who will help the company succeed. The raw material is found somewhere at the intersection between the market’s wishes and what you as a company can offer. How you as an employer act and communicate internally and externally should then be characterised by the content of your EVP. This is how you steer your employer brand in the right direction. And while we still use words like “you” and “manage” a little carelessly, it might be appropriate to point out that this process works against the wind if you don’t include your employees. Many would argue that the whole process starts there. And few would say they are wrong.

What makes your organisation so special?

It’s possible that we overrate how interested consumers are in brands in general. But there is an exception: the brand you work for and care deeply about. Keep that thought when designing your EVP, which should provide answers to what you as a company dream of achieving together, what you promise your employees in terms of development and how you act to live up to that promise.
Since everything is connected, the organisation’s overarching purpose is often the sail in the EVP as well. If you have created your brand platform, you have already started the culture work. Good for you!

Here we go!

Say that your business deals with children’s books and that the purpose in the brand platform is “That all children should have a bigger and richer world”. Based on that, a relevant employer promise could be formulated as: “Join and create the stories that give children the opportunity to grow.”
“Count me in!” Says the market spontaneously, because making a difference for children obviously makes sense to the sharpest children’s book creators. But on closer reflection, they may wonder how it will be done. It almost sounds too good to be true…
The EVP, therefore, needs well-founded values or principles that your company lives by and offers so that you can deliver on the promise together. Maybe you are “Courageous”, “Curious”, “Friends” where “Open discussions”, “Magic technology” and “Constant learning” are part of the culture. Promises that both attract and make demands. Exemplify what you mean by this in everyday life and leadership, so that everyone understands that this is more than just nice words.
And now you’re ready for the practical test of the employer promise: ask those who already work for you if they believe the EVP corresponds to reality. Essential – even for a company working with fairy tales.


Helena Helsing Mork
Concept developer & copywriter