EVP – What is it and Why is it Vital to Attracting and Retaining the Best Talent?
A highly competitive labour market as well as global challenges affecting economic pressures have had significant knock on effects within the workplace, particularly when attracting and retaining talent.
Since the pandemic, the notion of asking people what they want and then trying to meet these desires with an attractive offer is no longer enough. For a prospective employee, these negotiations often focus on material needs of the job, i.e. what do I get in Day 1 of joining your company. Most recently, this has been in the form of hybrid and remote working, with less emphasis on pay. Whilst these material aspects might attract talent through the door, it is no longer enough to retain employees long-term.
Instead, there is a better approach to retaining talent. It’s called an Employee Value Proposition (or, EVP). Through designing and implementing an attractive EVP, employers can make their working offer more enticing to prospective talent, in addition to supporting the retention of existing employees in the long-term.
EVP Comprises Four Inter-Connected Factors:
ONE: Material Offerings: These do not get overlooked and still remain relevant. They include factors such as, pay, office space, location, flexibility and ongoing perks.
TWO: Opportunities to Develop and Grow: These are clear paths for development and ways that an organisation can help its people attain new skills or reach promotional goals. These need to be made explicit and explored at the offer stage. Then, they should be revisited throughout conversations and reviews – growth and development should be transparent to employees with an attainable path defined.
THREE: Connection and Community: This is another fundamental reason people join an organisation: to be part of a larger community united by a clear purpose (explored below). A supportive and conscientious culture sets an organisation up for success. Employees need to feel appreciated and valued through accountability and social relationships.
FOUR: Being Part of a Bigger Mission: This is an organisation’s aspirations for existing; it’s the answer to the core question of why employees do the work they do. This bigger mission is related to organisational goals, company values or even projects ongoing that provide meaning and value to the work employees carry out. What are their contributions accumulating towards? How will these impact the overall mission? Are these shared and made explicit? An organisation should be transparent and definitive on what their mission is so a potential employer is given the opportunity to buy into this wider organisational meaning.
At MWA, the challenge we see with many organisations is that the above factors are managed independently of one another. HR handles material offerings; Heads of Department manage development and growth; and the C-suite owns connection and the bigger mission. In addition, some companies attract new talent with strong material offerings, yet avoid any mention of growth and development, preferring to keep these channels for existing colleagues.
Rather than acting as independent elements these fundamental factors should be amalgamated into a comprehensive offer, the EVP, utilised to both attract and retain the best talent. Defining a clear EVP will set your organisation aside; it will ensure the best people want to join your company and stay for the long-term. In MWA’s next article, we explore the best ways to begin planning and defining your individual EVP.