When’s the right time to start Employer Branding?

Cut the competition by appearing earlier in the career journey

The short answer is: as early as possible.

The best answer is: in the career education phase (when people are learning about their career options).

But first things first, you need to know exactly what employer branding is if you aren’t crystal clear already. So check out this article I wrote — ‘The Basics of Employer Branding’ — if you haven’t read it already.

Read it? Ok, let’s talk about when you should start employer branding.

Always start at least a few years early

If you want to access entry level talent, you need to deploy your employer branding well before these candidates start applying for their first job. You need to weave your way into their education, so they grow up knowing your name.

For managerial level, you should be starting while they’re juniors. You need to plant the seed in their minds that when they want to level up their career, your company is the one they want to do it with.

In all cases, you need to be sending that employer branding message (what is an employer branding message? Here’s what you need to know) to people at least a few years before they are making the decision as to which company they want to work for.

What are my competitors doing?

Did you know there are three stages to the early career journey?

And did you know that almost all of your competitors are trying to reach talent at the same time, at the 11th hour?

90% of companies only reach out to talent at the end of the early career journey.

And did you know potential employees start taking action when they’re 14 years old?

The three career stages brands can consider for their employer branding strategy

If you want to stand out from the crowd, you just need to start earlier.

Interested in more about what your different competitors are doing? I’ve written another article where you can explore the different methods of employer branding that exist.

Why career education?

The logic is: strike while you have no competition and while you have a captive audience.

It’s a low-cost, easy way to get noticed by and add value to lots of potential talent, while they’re in a stage of their lives where they’re actively learning about the different things they can do.

Sam is CEO & Co-Founder of ERIC and is an employer branding expert (especially when it comes to targeting Gen Z talent).

Want to know the latest in employer branding news & practice? I’ve got an ever-growing list of very useful statistics and persuasive evidence of how effective employer branding can be free and available here (email me for the password at sam@meet-eric.com).



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Samantha Hornsby

Co-founder of ERIC. Likes writing, loves listening. Immersive experience obsessive.