In an age of instant imagery and messaging, protecting an organisation's brand and public image are becoming an increasingly important part of attracting, hiring and keeping top executives.
A survey by recruitment firm Kenexa has found that while compensation is the most important reason why employees accept a job, corporate reputation runs a close second, highlighting the importance of maintaining a positive public image when it comes to the war for talent.
An organisation's reputation consists of a variety of characteristics, including its involvement in corporate social responsibility and the quality of its product as well as its profitability.
Senior managers and sales people place the most value on the organisation's reputation in weighing up an employment offer, the survey found.
Reputation is also a critical part of the decision making process for employees in countries as diverse as India, Italy, Russia and Brazil.
Yet employer brand – and the protection of that brand – is something employers and managers are often remarkably cavalier about.
Back in May, for example, a study of 5000 HR and finance managers in 17 countries by financial recruitment firm Robert Half found that two-thirds of firms did not have a formal employer brand strategy in place, and many had no plans to develop one.
"The correlation between the organisation's reputation and successful recruiting efforts strongly supports the importance of employment branding," explained Jack Wiley, executive director of the Kenexa Research Institute.
"It's not about each individual job offer – this research highlights the value of presenting and maintaining positive brand messaging to the potential employee talent pool."
"Investing in living organisational values, whether it's profitability, longevity or social good, and then communicating the fulfilment of these goals is an impactful way to attract and align engaged employees," he added.