German Employer Branding in International Comparison

The competition for skilled workers is increasing, making it ever more important for employers to position themselves optimally. Effective employer branding is crucial, and German companies are placing more emphasis on it. But how does it look in other countries? And how do German companies fare in international comparison? The employer branding expert Universum surveyed a total of 1,600 marketing, HR, and talent acquisition managers, as well as recruiting and resourcing professionals worldwide, including 132 Germans. The conclusion: Germany is lagging behind. In this blog post, we take a look at employer branding trends and a comparison of employer branding internationally.

What Does Employer Branding Actually Mean? - Definition & Employer Branding Translation

Employer branding translates to "employer brand building." It describes the implementation of measures that a company can take to build and maintain its own brand. The resulting employer brand aims to create an advantage over competitors as a suitable and attractive employer.

Given the increasing shortage of personnel and skilled workers and the resulting competition for talent in many industries and companies, the goal of employer branding is to position the company as an attractive employer to employees and potential candidates, thus improving employee acquisition and retention.

The term employer branding is increasingly used in a corporate context, particularly in HR departments, marketing departments, or specialized agencies. The HR and marketing departments of a company plan employer branding strategies and implement them with defined measures. These employer branding measures are comparable to other marketing measures aimed at acquiring customers, partners, or similar.

Typical questions within employer branding include: What distinguishes our company as an employer? Why should the best talents work for us? From an employee's perspective, the question might be: Why do we work for our employer?

Employer branding has now become a central component of HR in Germany. What does employer branding look like in Germany, and how do German companies compare internationally?

Employer Branding Studies - Germany in International Comparison

German Companies Are Not Engaging Enough with Their Employer Brand

An international study from 2020 on the topic of employer branding showed that German companies still have room for improvement. According to the study by the employer branding consultancy Universum, only half of German companies assign high priority to employer branding. Even fewer companies take action. Only 32 percent of companies know what they want to communicate to their employees and the image they want to convey.

This puts German companies behind in international comparison. Looking at the 90 most attractive employers in the world, 89 percent of them consider employer branding a high priority, and 76 percent have already established a clear communication strategy and company positioning.

Employer Branding Worldwide: A Look at International Trends

Which Strategies Work Well in Employer Branding Internationally

A look at which strategies in employer branding are prioritized by the world's most popular employers and where German companies can still develop.

Diversity

Germany can improve particularly in terms of diversity in recruiting. According to the employer branding study, German employers consider factors such as gender, age, origin, or religion less strongly when hiring new employees compared to their international counterparts.

Although nearly every second employer in Germany (48 percent) views diversity as very important, German companies pay less attention to it when hiring new employees than companies in other countries (61 percent). Among the so-called "World’s Most Attractive Employers," almost every company (98 percent) values diversity criteria in their recruiting.

On a positive note, German companies place greater emphasis on the learning ability (+18 percent) and communication skills (+14 percent) of new employees in international comparison.

Why Is Diversity Important?

Diversity refers to the distribution of genders, nationalities, cultures, age structures, and other aspects that make a team diverse. Authentic communication of ethical aspects is only possible in an organization characterized by diversity. In employer branding, diversity management can be crucial.

Green Recruiting

The shortage of skilled workers and demographic changes require companies to adapt even more to current trends. To attract and retain employees, it takes not only modern employee benefits and development opportunities within the organizational structure. The company's stance on current issues such as sustainability, environmental protection, and CO2 reduction is also part of recruiting. Companies that actively implement measures in this regard and develop matching employer branding measures will prevail over competitors in the long term.

Data-Driven Decisions

Data-based decisions can also be important for employer branding, providing companies with a basis for making key decisions. These data, for example, provide information about the target group and help identify key factors that can overall increase attractiveness as an employer.

According to the Universum study, 41 percent of German companies indicated they already base their decisions on data. In international comparison, German employers are less data-oriented.

Stefan Wendering
Stefan is a freelance writer and editor at NAVIT. Previously, he worked for startups and in the mobility cosmos. He is an expert in urban and sustainable mobility, employee benefits and new work. Besides blog content, he also creates marketing materials, taglines and content for websites and case studies.

The competition for skilled workers is increasing, making it ever more important for employers to position themselves optimally. Effective employer branding is crucial, and German companies are placing more emphasis on it. But how does it look in other countries? And how do German companies fare in international comparison? The employer branding expert Universum surveyed a total of 1,600 marketing, HR, and talent acquisition managers, as well as recruiting and resourcing professionals worldwide, including 132 Germans. The conclusion: Germany is lagging behind. In this blog post, we take a look at employer branding trends and a comparison of employer branding internationally.

What Does Employer Branding Actually Mean? - Definition & Employer Branding Translation

Employer branding translates to "employer brand building." It describes the implementation of measures that a company can take to build and maintain its own brand. The resulting employer brand aims to create an advantage over competitors as a suitable and attractive employer.

Given the increasing shortage of personnel and skilled workers and the resulting competition for talent in many industries and companies, the goal of employer branding is to position the company as an attractive employer to employees and potential candidates, thus improving employee acquisition and retention.

The term employer branding is increasingly used in a corporate context, particularly in HR departments, marketing departments, or specialized agencies. The HR and marketing departments of a company plan employer branding strategies and implement them with defined measures. These employer branding measures are comparable to other marketing measures aimed at acquiring customers, partners, or similar.

Typical questions within employer branding include: What distinguishes our company as an employer? Why should the best talents work for us? From an employee's perspective, the question might be: Why do we work for our employer?

Employer branding has now become a central component of HR in Germany. What does employer branding look like in Germany, and how do German companies compare internationally?

Employer Branding Studies - Germany in International Comparison

German Companies Are Not Engaging Enough with Their Employer Brand

An international study from 2020 on the topic of employer branding showed that German companies still have room for improvement. According to the study by the employer branding consultancy Universum, only half of German companies assign high priority to employer branding. Even fewer companies take action. Only 32 percent of companies know what they want to communicate to their employees and the image they want to convey.

This puts German companies behind in international comparison. Looking at the 90 most attractive employers in the world, 89 percent of them consider employer branding a high priority, and 76 percent have already established a clear communication strategy and company positioning.

Employer Branding Worldwide: A Look at International Trends

Which Strategies Work Well in Employer Branding Internationally

A look at which strategies in employer branding are prioritized by the world's most popular employers and where German companies can still develop.

Diversity

Germany can improve particularly in terms of diversity in recruiting. According to the employer branding study, German employers consider factors such as gender, age, origin, or religion less strongly when hiring new employees compared to their international counterparts.

Although nearly every second employer in Germany (48 percent) views diversity as very important, German companies pay less attention to it when hiring new employees than companies in other countries (61 percent). Among the so-called "World’s Most Attractive Employers," almost every company (98 percent) values diversity criteria in their recruiting.

On a positive note, German companies place greater emphasis on the learning ability (+18 percent) and communication skills (+14 percent) of new employees in international comparison.

Why Is Diversity Important?

Diversity refers to the distribution of genders, nationalities, cultures, age structures, and other aspects that make a team diverse. Authentic communication of ethical aspects is only possible in an organization characterized by diversity. In employer branding, diversity management can be crucial.

Green Recruiting

The shortage of skilled workers and demographic changes require companies to adapt even more to current trends. To attract and retain employees, it takes not only modern employee benefits and development opportunities within the organizational structure. The company's stance on current issues such as sustainability, environmental protection, and CO2 reduction is also part of recruiting. Companies that actively implement measures in this regard and develop matching employer branding measures will prevail over competitors in the long term.

Data-Driven Decisions

Data-based decisions can also be important for employer branding, providing companies with a basis for making key decisions. These data, for example, provide information about the target group and help identify key factors that can overall increase attractiveness as an employer.

According to the Universum study, 41 percent of German companies indicated they already base their decisions on data. In international comparison, German employers are less data-oriented.