Finding cost effective ways to source and hire talent is vital to every company’s success. Hiring and retaining talent affects every department and its people. However, sourcing the talent you need is getting harder – and this scenario is unlikely to change (in fact, it may even get harder).

This scarcity of skills has driven organisations to build employer brands – their unique employment proposition that will enable them to stand out and be more ‘talent competitive.’ Creating a positive brand or influence is about creating, shaping and continually refining a reputation – and that can’t be achieved superficially. It’s about building on the reality of what it’s like to work in your organisation. Which is why empowering your employees to convey the brand from the inside out is such a powerful and positive force. It’s about authenticity, shared responsibility and breaking down department silos so that the organisation speaks with one voice – and one clearly defined brand..

The question is, should you give your employees the tools to share and leverage both their personal and company brand? And if so, how do you manage that, securely and seamlessly?

The business case to do so is irresistible. Organisations with high levels of brand advocacy enjoy increased sales, better customer relations, higher levels of employee engagement and improved brand recognition. Any workforce that is naturally advocating the brand is one that is aligned, engaged and buying into the organisation’s mission, vision and values.

As top talent becomes harder to to find, an organisation’s ability to attract the skills they need will become more vital than ever. Marketing an aspirational yet authentic employer brand is the most effective way a company can achieve this goal (and the world of today allows you to do just that, as leveraging social media means companies can cut through the noise and market the real employee voice).

How do you identify and acquire employment ambassadors from both inside and outside your organisation – and work with them to combine the social influence both of your company and that of the individual.

Both Marketing and HR are starting to understand that a collaborative ‘for the good of the company’ culture drives positive sharing behaviours – but companies need to work hard to build such a culture, this isn’t an overnight change and transformation program.

The first step is to move away from using social media as if it were a job board. Instead, position it as part of the overall employer branding mix – i.e. using it as part of a multi channel marketing strategy.

The second step is to recognise that your candidates (like your customers) are potential marketing assets for your organisation.

The third step is to find those people who are already advocating your brand and understand the benefits of using social media. These are the people who you can rely on to champion your advocacy program and market your employer brand in the best and most authentic light.

For many companies, the idea of “setting employees loose” on social media is a daunting thought. Yet this is exactly what you need to do if you want to market the true voice of your organisation.