The job market boomed in 2018. Employers added well over two million jobs, unemployment hit 2% in many cities, and over 7 million unfilled jobs flooded the market. The data isn’t in yet, but 2019 is expected to follow a similar pattern.

While a flourishing job market is excellent news for professionals looking for better opportunities, it means that businesses are not choosing the talent; talent is choosing the businesses.

In other words, businesses are working much harder to attract top-of-the-line candidates, even implementing new technology like automation tools and big data to streamline the process. However, there is an easier way to attract the best talent to your company.

A strong employee value proposition (EVP) can draw employees to apply to, and ultimately work with, your business. But creating an attractive EVP isn’t as simple as writing a list of the benefits you offer.

Effective EVPs are highly targeted and succinct statements showing employees what they’ll get out of working with your brand. A top example comes from Hubspot: “We’re building a company people love. A company that will stand the test of time. So we invest in our people, and optimize for your long term happiness.”

Read on to learn how to create your own unique EVP—and bring top talent straight to your front doors.

1. Determine who you’re targeting.

There’s a big difference between HubSpot’s professional yet approachable EVP and Yelp’s more youthful and energetic version: “We work hard, throw Nerf darts even harder, and have a whole lot of fun.” It’s clear that Yelp is targeting young, energetic employees who have most likely just entered the job market.

The first step with any writing task is to determine your target audience. Choosing the type of professional you want to attract will help you decide the values you’ll focus on and the style of writing you’ll use.

For example, do you want to attract mid-career millennials? Ensure your EVP mentions career-building opportunities, inclusion, and work-life balance, and write with a relatable, lighthearted tone.

Looking for more mature hires? Focus on managerial opportunities and leadership in your EVP, and use a professional, down-to-earth tone.

2. Describe what value you’re offering.

Gartner suggests that EVPs should cover five basic attributes: opportunity, people, organization, work, and rewards. Of course, the average statement doesn’t include each of these categories, especially if it’s short and catchy. But at least one or two of these five attributes should be a feature of any quality EVP.

To cover opportunity, talk about education and career development courses or events you offer. Do you pay for conference attendance or online classes? These tools are attractive to young employees looking to advance their careers.

Your business’s people are a popular focus of EVPs. Mention coworker dynamics and management strategies—especially if they are cutting-edge or especially appealing to your current employees.

Organization may be more useful to mention if you’re targeting more experienced, high-level candidates. This category includes your business’s position in the market and your product or service’s quality and unique attributes.

Another popular category is work-related items, like opportunities to align jobs with personal interests and work-life balance. Work-life balance is particularly important to younger generations and professionals with families.

Finally, you can discuss rewards your company offers, including compensation, benefits, vacation time, and flexible working opportunities. If the benefits your company offers are standard for your industry, keep them out of your EVP and instead list them prominently on your career page.

EVPs are typically short, so keep in mind that including items from all five categories may be overwhelming for candidates. Instead, brainstorm ideas within these categories and pick either an overarching theme you identify or one or two categories that stand out.

3. Capitalize on your business’s unique attributes.

To ensure your company stands out to candidates, try to identify and emphasize what makes your company unique. This can be your high-energy culture, your generous benefits, or your top-of-the-line product. Most often, especially because younger generations dominating the workforce prioritize it, companies choose to focus on company culture.

As Michelle Hord-White, NBCUniversal’s VP of Talent Acquisition and Campus Programs, says, “[Your EVP] has to be inspirational, not aspirational…It should be an experience that we can talk to candidates about, and 100 days after they get there, they can confirm.”

If you do choose to center your EVP around company culture, highlight what honestly makes coming to work day after day great, and it is almost sure to be unique.

With these tips in your arsenal, you’ll be able to create a strong EVP that will help candidates immediately grasp a clear idea of the benefits to working for your brand. Once you publicize your unique, targeted EVP, sit back and watch as your inbox is flooded by qualified—and enthusiastic—applicants.

Contact us to learn how Lucas James Talent Partners can help your business attract high-quality talent.