Management to Business
Human resource management is a broad and multifaceted topic which holds significant strategic importance in business. Employer branding is one aspect contained within human resource management.
Swystun (2007) describes employer branding as a branded product of human resource management which represents a unique employment experience which would help create a company's value and experience. An employer brand consists of a firm's values, system, behaviours and policies to make them more attractive to potential employers . The process of employer branding represents a targeted, long term strategy to manage the internal and external perceptions of a firm by promoting what makes it desirable as an employer and what differentiates it from other firms (Sullivan, 2004; Backhaus & Tikoo, 2004). The objective is to build an image of a company that is a good place to work in the mind's of potential employees (Ewing, 2002) and to create identity through differentiation in the eye's of key stakeholders (Knox & Binkerton，2003). Berthon et al. (2005) argue that current and potential employees are considered as potential branding targets where the external marketing of the employer brand increases the attractiveness of a firm to appeal to the best possible human capital. However, employer branding is also utilised to retain employees, especially those constituting significant human capital, to perpetuate success and profits and produce a competitive edge (Moroko & Uncles，2008). In fact, there are three stages involved in employer branding. The first is value proposition which aims to create a true representation of a firm and provides the central message that is to be conveyed (Eisenberg et al., 2001). The second is the external marketing of the employer brand, and the third is internal marketing which aims incorporate a firm's brand promise as part of it's organisational culture (Frook，2001). It is this internal aspect of employer branding that will be the focus of this report. Gronroos (2000) positions company's employees as internal customers and jobs as internal products. This includes satisfying these internal customers by making the job more attractive and develop and motivate them (Rafiq & Ahmed，2000). Internal branding holds strategic importance to firms for a number of reasons, which will be explored in this literature review. De Chernatony (2002) argues that staff, particularly in service industries, are the embodiment of corporate brand through the adoption of behaviours that reinforce a
common set of brand values which have been predetermined by the firm. This is because the behaviour of employees is seen as having a big influence on how stakeholders perceive corporate brands and make sense of their identity and image (Anixter et al.,
2003). In fact, it is even considered as important as external branding efforts in the process of communicating and delivering brand promise to customers (Cleaver,1999).
Stuart (2002) found that the more an employee identifies with an organisation, the more likely they are to uphold this identity in their actions. Therefore, internal branding is important as it is used as part of the attempt to achieve this alignment between corporate and employee ideals, by promoting the brand inside a firm through internal marketing efforts (Drake et al., 2005). It is also crucial to ensure that these internal and external marketing efforts are coherent with each other as issues may otherwise arise as these organisational narratives create and build trust (Schultz et al., 2000) which should not be broken. Drucker (1986:89) argues that organisations “can become failures of their own success when narratives are not truthful” or to not develop alongside the