There’s really only one reason that you should have any concern over your employment brand and it’s this:
Job at Great Brand = High Self-esteem
Stop for one minute and don’t think like a marketer, but like a normal person. Why does a normal person want to go to work for a great brand? Why would you?
Let me put it another way. Why do you buy and wear brand name clothing? It’s not because it’s, necessarily, better made than any other brand. It’s because it makes you feel good to wear that brand. People look at you and see that you’re wearing that brand. It gives you a boost to your self-esteem.
Now, think about the brands you love. For me, I love Nike. Always have, since I was a kid. I have a lot of Nike stuff in my life. When I see someone that works at Nike, I get excited. I want to know more about how they like it, what its like, etc. I’ve applied to work at Nike early in my career, and got shot down. I know working for Nike would have made me feel good about myself and the company I was working for. I have a belief that others would have been ‘impressed’ I was working for Nike. Whether if it was true or not, that was my perception.
The only true reason your employment brand is important is because of this. People want to work an organization that is a boost to their self-esteem. Even if your brand is neutral in doing that, it’s a negative. They want to work for a brand ‘they’ feel others will be impressed by for a number of varied reasons: it’s cool (Google/Zappos), it’s important (Universities/Government/FBI), they do good stuff (Hospitals/Teachers), they make a ton of money (Berkshire Hathaway), they are innovative (hot new tech firms), they are professional (law firms/banking/professional services), etc.
Your employment brand, for some segment of your hiring population, needs to raise their self-esteem. Find out what it is about you that does that, and you’ll have employment branding figured out.