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Employer Branding and Diversity ... Employer Branding and Diversity How to attract talented females...

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  • Employer Branding and Diversity

    How to attract talented females into R&D oriented corporations

    Y A Z H U O L I U

    Master of Science Thesis Stockholm, Sweden 2010

  • Employer Branding and Diversity

    How to attract talented females into R&D oriented corporations

    Y A Z H U O L I U

    Master’s Thesis in Media Technology (30 ECTS credits) at the Media Management Master Programme Royal Institute of Technology year 2010 Supervisor was Christopher Rosenqvist, SSE Examiner was Nils Enlund TRITA-CSC-E 2010:087 ISRN-KTH/CSC/E--10/087-SE ISSN-1653-5715 Royal Institute of Technology School of Computer Science and Communication KTH CSC SE-100 44 Stockholm, Sweden URL: www.kth.se/csc

  • EMPLOYER BRANDING AND DIVERSITY:

    -HOW TO ATTRACT TALENTED FEMALES INTO R&D

    ORIENTED CORPORATIONS

    ABSTRACT

    The strategic importance of employer brand has been valued both in business and

    academic world. Employer-based brand has become a crucial asset for companies.

    Diversity as one of the most important factors which impact the employer brand is

    troubling most R&D oriented companies. Ericsson as a market leader within the

    telecommunication industry is also facing the same problem and has proposed this thesis

    project. The purpose of this thesis is to study how an R&D oriented company could

    attract more talented females by leveraging efficient marketing communication. The

    investigation focused on existing and potential employees’ brand perception of the

    company and also on their preference regarding information content, format and

    channels. The empirical data are collected via both qualitative interviews and also

    through a quantitative online survey to potential employees.

    The finding shows that there is a large brand perception gap between internal and

    potential employees and they also identifies important factors in becoming an ideal

    employer. In order to narrow this gap and attract more talented females, Ericsson should

    first deliver more comprehensive and trustworthy information about the company to

    provide more encouragement and assistance for female applicants. Furthermore,

    information should be conveyed in a more vivid way such as through video and through

    effective channels like the company website. University presence and social media need

    to be improved in order to support the suggested strategy.

    Keywords: employer brand, employee-based brand equity, diversity, marketing

    communication

  • VARUMÄRKESUPPFATTNING OCH MÅNGFALD:

    - HUR SKA FOU-INRIKTADE FÖ RETAG ATTRAHERA

    BEGÅVADE KVINNOR

    SAMMANFATTNING

    Den strategiska betydelsen av ”employer brand” värderas högt både inom näringslivet

    och i den akademiska världen. ”Employer brand” som varumärke har blivit en viktig

    tillgång för företagen. För de flesta FoU-inriktade företagen är det oroande att mångfald

    är en av de viktigaste faktorerna som påverkar ”employer brand”. Ericsson som

    marknadsledande inom telekommunikationsbranschen brottas med samma problem och

    har därför initierat detta examensarbete. Syftet med examensarbetet är att studera hur

    ett FoU-inriktat företag skulle kunna attrahera fler kvinnliga talanger genom att utnyttja

    en effektiv marknadskommunikation. Undersökningen fokuserade på befintliga och

    potentiella medarbetares uppfattning om företagets varumärke och deras preferenser

    beträffande informationsinnehåll, format och kanaler. Det empiriska materialet har

    samlats in både genom kvalitativa intervjuer men också genom en kvantitativ on-line

    enkätundersökning med potentiella medarbetare.

    Resultaten visar att det finns en stor skillnad avseende varumärkesuppfattning mellan

    befintliga och potentiella medarbetare och identifierar även de viktigaste faktorerna för

    en ideal arbetsgivare. För att minska denna skillnad och attrahera fler kvinnliga talanger

    är en slutsats att Ericsson bör leverera mer omfattande och tillförlitlig information om

    företaget för att ge mer uppmuntran och stöd till kvinnliga sökande. Vidare bör

    informationen göras mer levande t. ex. genom video och användning av effektiva

    kanaler som t. ex. bolagets hemsida. Synlighet på universitet och i sociala medier måste

    förbättras för att stödja den föreslagna strategin.

    Nyckelord: employer brand, anställd-baserade varumärkesvärde, mångfald, marknadskommunikation

  • PREFACE

    By the time I started working on the study, I was hardly aware of the journey lying ahead

    of me. Linda Schang as my supervisor at Ericsson tried to warn us about being

    overambitious with our research intention. True, the work has been hard, but we have

    been convinced by the synergy effect, which is involved with working in a team. This

    ambition enabled us to accomplish both a quantitative and qualitative research approach

    within a limited period of time.

    I have to admit that I faced some serious challenges during the time I was working on my

    master thesis. But every time I overcame an obstacle, new energy was regained, which

    motivated me and my team members to continue.

    Now, I am proud of and satisfied with the accomplished work. I hope that reading the

    thesis will be interesting and pleasant, since either most readers are about to graduate

    and will soon be in a situation, where Employer Branding might play an important role or

    are dealing with these concepts in a professional setting.

    However, I would never have been able to complete this master thesis without the

    contributions of many others. Therefore I would like to express our appreciation to all,

    who have played a role in the realization of this thesis. In particular I would like to

    appreciate my supervisor at Ericsson Linda Schang for her expertise, valuable insights

    and support throughout the writing process. I would also like to thank the interviewees

    from Ericsson and its collaborative universities. Furthermore, I express my gratefulness

    to the respondents of our survey: Master Students at KTH, as well as the other ones from

    Chinese universities. I would like to thank my supervisor at SSE, Christopher Rosenqvist

    for his feedback, meanwhile, Christer Lie from KTH for his patience and help. In addition,

    I would like to express my appreciation for my thesis team members Han Jie and Maral

    Kalajian for their inspired and brilliant ideas that motivate me to keep improving.

    I would finally like to thank my dear parents and friend Cao Zhe for their caring,

    encouragement and support.

  • TABLE OF CONTENTS

    1. Introduction .................................................................................................................................................................. 1

    1.1. Background .................................................................................................................................................... 1

    1.2. Problem discussion and research scope ........................................................................................... 2

    1.3. Purpose and research questions........................................................................................................... 2

    1.3.1. Purpose and delimitations ....................................................................................................... 2

    1.3.2. Research questions ..................................................................................................................... 3

    1.4. Theoretical and Practical Relevance ....................................................................................................... 3

    1.5. Disposition ...................................................................................................................................................... 4

    1.6. Chapter summary ........................................................................................................................................ 4

    2. Theoretical framework ............................................................................................................................................. 5

    2.1. Brand equity .................................................................................................................................................. 5

    2.1.1. Customer- based brand equity ............................................................................................... 5

    2.1.2. Employee-based brand equity ............................................................................................... 6

    2.1.3. Brand Equity and Signalling .................................................................................................... 7

    2.2. Marketing communication ...................................................................................................................... 8

    2.2.1. Strategic planning process ....................................................................................................... 9

    2.2.2

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