Selling Your EVP: Part 1

Selling Your EVP Part 1:

Do we remember what we are trying to do?

With a quick look at differentiation and communication, we ask whether we have lost our way with employer value propositions in Africa.

The various EVPs of some of Africa's major employers. Clearly differentiated offer? Not really.

These are some of the key statements and propositions presented on the main careers landing pages of major African employers. It's a random sample, taken from the first few seconds of interaction with their websites.

What's in a value proposition? 

Value proposition - noun

  1. (in marketing) an innovation, service, or feature intended to make a company or product attractive to customers.

Employer value proposition - noun

  1. (in human resources) The employer value proposition (EVP) is a unique set of offerings, associations and values to positively influence target candidates and employees. 

At the definition level, value proposition and employer value position are fairly closely aligned equivalents. Both sum up what's on offer to the target market, be it a commercial market or a talent one.

Checking the input and the output

An EVP doesn't exist in a vacuum, or it shouldn't.

There is no point in an EVP which isn't aligned to the type of talent we want in the business (and what exists in the market). People should be the input - the EVP should not exist without them, as a building must have foundations.

The output of the EVP is how we communicate it back to the market (as well as how we deliver it in the business). As the latter relates to authenticity, which is another discussion in this blog, we focus here on communication. The EVP cannot exist where it is not communicated, and doesn't exist when something else is communicated in its place.

Back to those examples in the picture

We'd argue that the examples above are lacking in both the input and the output. The messages are too generic to be based on personas created from data about real talent, and the choice to communicate these messages means that even if a more nuanced EVP exists (we should assume it does, given the size and reputation of those employers), it might as well not.

While those statements are only snippets from their sites and perhaps more EVP detail is available by digging deeper, it's obvious to note that it's best not to a. bury your proposition where people have to look for it, and b. make something that doesn't sum up your proposition really easy to find.

What should we be doing?

We're leaving the 'how' on both the input and the output of EVP in Africa to later posts. Here we'll simply give the high level view of what we believe.

  1. We believe that employers need to invest in EVP to be successful in the highly competitive talent markets around Africa.
  2. We believe that an EVP needs to be based on insight into real people and what they want - the input.
  3. We believe that this insight should be targeted to the African markets, not global norms.
  4. We believe that EVP is wasted if it isn't faithfully communicated, or if it's lost in the noise of competing communications - the output.
  5. We believe that Africa's employers are currently leaving money on the table when it comes to realising the benefits of EVP.

Next time and find out more

We'll be looking at posts around gathering Africa-specific data for EVP creation, and how to segment and communicate EVPs effectively through existing and new channels.

EVP will of course be on the agenda at our Talent Agenda Series Conferences. To find your regional event and join the discussion, visit our registration page here.