Employer Branding in the Telecoms Industry

WRITTEN BY: Jörgen Sundberg

In the fight to attract and retain talent in existing and emerging markets, a focus on employer brand is a key element. It’s about projecting the brand so that it appeals to a wide and diverse range of potential applicants – those with the commitment and aspiration that will fit well with the culture and objectives of their employer.

It’s important to ensure that the senior team is active in building awareness of the organization’s vision and values with a clear understanding of the importance of people, leadership, talent management, and reward.

Successful telecoms enterprises want to be seen as attractive places to work and an employee-centered and personal approach is crucial to building business for the long-term.

Stand for something

We chatted with Catalina Schveninger, who heads up global employer brand for British telecoms giant Vodafone, about their employment brand. She quotes Jeff Bezos who once said, “The brand is not what you say it is, it’s what they say it is.” Their list of recent awards is particularly impressive so they are obviously making waves in the right places.

Catalina says that the challenge for a global brand comes from integrating, creating one culture across, but still being very respectful of local roots. Every great brand stands for something and at Vodafone exists to connect everybody to live a better today and build a better to tomorrow. Outreach is important to them and the Vodafone Foundation uses charitable giving and technology to make a difference by supporting projects that improve people’s lives through the application of technology, across the areas of health, education and disaster relief.

Shared success

Tisha Leslie, Director of Employer Brand at T-Mobile US told us the objective of T-Mobile’s employer brand is to “make it obvious”, what the give-get of working at the company is. Research, internal as well as external, are key. Their careers site goes straight to the point: “We don’t have a corporate ladder – it’s more like a jungle gym of options, your careers path may take you in directions you didn’t think were possible.”

Tisha’s philosophy is to ensure that the company gets picked by the right people for the right reasons – because getting picked by customers, employees, investors, and communities at large is what makes a company grow and thrive.

For T-Mobile, it’s personal as their culture of shared success comes from an unrelenting focus on people – customers and employees. The team domain includes all of the career and social media channels, the company LinkedIn page, full-funnel recruitment marketing media and tactics, and the careers website. Tisha says they found that their audience wants to be informed on Twitter. They want to be inspired on Instagram, and they want to be entertained on Facebook. Her team often takes the same topic and portrays it differently using those three lenses.

The CIPD says that organizations that have a strong and attractive employer brand:

  • can use it to help them produce in turn a more engaged workforce who ‘live the brand’ and in turn reduce the costs of employee turnover
  • are likely to perform better, have higher attendance levels and deliver a more positive customer experience.

Try to keep employer branding efforts fresh and the organization motivated behind them by looking for new ways to help people share ideas for improvement and seeking to align employees’ lived experience with the brand that projects it.


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