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Is your business looking to modernise and evolve? Then you need to invest in an EVP

By Richard Barrett | Managing director



The Drum Network article

This content is produced by The Drum Network, a paid-for membership club for CEOs and their agencies who want to share their expertise and grow their business.

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December 20, 2021 | 7 min read

The world has undergone a series of profound shifts since March 2020.

Initials on the importance of valuing employees and why now is the time to invest in them.

Initials on the importance of valuing employees and why now is the time to invest in them.

Increased competition for talent, rising staff costs and employee retention are all key issues on the minds of today’s business leaders. As such, being an employer of choice has never been more important.

To navigate these uncharted waters, companies are beginning to realise the benefits of a strong Employee Value Proposition, or EVP.

A recent study by Aon found that 41% of employers in the UK are expecting to review their EVP in light of the COVID-19 pandemic, while 43% of those without an existing EVP plan to develop one.

When done correctly, an EVP will keep a business evolving. It can build deeper connections, flex to meet different aspects of work, inspire personal growth, contribute towards holistic wellbeing and rally people around a shared purpose.

This means that if your company has a strong EVP, and you’re living by it, then by default your company is evolving, modernising and keeping on the front foot.

In fact, new research has shown 75% of jobseekers are more likely to apply for a job if the employer actively manages its employer brand and EVP.

The good news is your EVP already exists – you just need to find the magic.

Let’s explore how.

Breaking the EVP stereotype

Many people think of an EVP as a “thing” – but it’s actually a living experience.

Yes, it absolutely ticks the box in terms of attracting top talent, but it also tackles retention and provides validity for every stage of the employee lifecycle – from initial attraction all the way through to the exit interview.

An EVP exists to ensure a constant betterment for both the employer and employee during this lifecycle. It contributes to the betterment of every individual in the company and, as a result, the wider success of the organisation.

In other words, it’s the link that sets common expectations, embodies workplace culture and delivers a higher purpose that all parties can strive towards.

Contrary to popular stereotypes, an EVP is not a one-way broadcast of strengths, benefits and opportunities. It’s a mutual value exchange that defines, captures and communicates what an organisation will give to its employees and what the employer will get back in return.

This mutual value exchange becomes an ongoing ecosystem that sets the framework for how senior leaders and employees at all levels of the business can rally behind a shared vision.

How to find the magic of your EVP

At Initials, we walk clients through a four-step process to arrive at the essence of what your EVP truly stands for. The net result should be clear, simple and flexible – which will allow the EVP to be relevant to any individual at any time.

Let’s explore how this process works.

Step 1. Audit

To kick off an EVP project, an organisation must start with a no-holds-barred assessment of its existing culture and workplace. This means auditing the real, lived experiences – not just the “sunshine” aspects of your employer brand or why it’s nice to work for you.

Step 2. Territories

Next, businesses need to look at what these insights reveal. What does the company profile look like? Where does this fit into archetypal representations of an organisation?

Step 3. Creative Ideas

Once all this information has been gathered and analysed, companies can start to determine how the unique characteristics of your employer brand be translated into creative ideas that drive purpose, impact and emotion.

Step 4. Manifestation

Finally, the EVP can be manifested into real-world campaign execution – looking across all touchpoints and experiences in and out of the business, such as the candidate experience, training initiatives, cultural experiences and more.

By taking steps to proactively design an EVP, organisations can take ownership over their employee experience and align this with the company vision to create a more positive outlook for both the business and its employees.

The benefits of a powerful and authentic EVP

Once an EVP has been investigated, unearthed and formulated, it can start to benefit multiple aspects of the business.

Since this is a mutual value proposition, it sets the stage for the reciprocal employee/employer relationship to follow. This makes the entire recruitment process much more attractive, streamlined and effective, which in turn drives the attraction of talent that is better suited to the organisation.

Not only does this help attract top talent, but it can lower recruitment costs, since companies begin to organically grow their talent funnels and can rely less on agency support.

LinkedIn has shown that an effective employer brand and EVP can:

  • Reduce turnover by 28%
  • Reduce cost-per-hire by 50%
  • Attract 50% more qualified applicants
  • Make time to hire 1-2x faster

But the beauty of an EVP is that it doesn’t stop at the talent attraction phase. It benefits existing employees by creating clear parameters for progress, learning and development and how to succeed within the organisation.

If your business has yet to invest in an EVP, then now is the time to seriously consider how it can propel your business forward during a time of marked change.

Richard Barrett, managing director at Initials.

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