Benefits and Compensation

Your EVP—Defining Total Rewards

The Employee Value Proposition (EVP) is the total rewards value an employee or applicant derives from the everyday employee experience, says consultant Stephanie Tarant, PhD. Including compensation and benefits and more, it is the foundation of an organization’s reputation as a place to work.

You Have One (Whether You Know It or Not)

You have an EVP whether you think you do or not, says Tarant. But a formal plan can make a difference. Tarant pointed to one study that showed that about one-third of employers had a formalized EVP and those employers tended to be more competitive than the two-thirds with an “organic” EVP.

Tarant, who is principal at Global Talent Consulting, offered her tips at BLR’s Advanced Employment Issues Symposium, held recently in Las Vegas.

EVP: Balancing ‘Give’ vs. ‘Get’

Employee ‘Gives’



Skills/ Ability






Employer ‘Gives’




Meaningful Work

Opportunities for Growth



How do you balance this equation out? One company had workers going 60 to 70 hours a week, but they also offered dry-cleaning concierge service, a farmers’ market on-site, and on-site child care, says Tarant.®, now thoroughly revved with easier navigation and more complete compensation information, will tell you what’s being paid right in your state–or even metropolitan area–for hundreds of jobs. Try it at no cost and get a complimentary special report. Read More.

Brand vs. Proposition

The EVP and the Employment Brand are not the same, says Tarant.

The Employment Brand is “Who you are” (how the company delivers value, its mission, its general reputation as a place to work).

The EVP is “What You Offer” (specifically, the culture, the environment, the resources, the rewards).

Leverage Brand

Tarant offers Deere as an example of leveraging its brand.

The ad says, “Nothing runs like a Deere” (focusing on quality products) and “Are you ready to run with the best?” (focusing on the quality of the employees).

Design the EVP from the Inside Out

To get started with your EVP, answer the following questions, suggests Tarant.

  • Why do people come to work at your company and why do they stay or go?
  • What does your company offer that is unique or make it most attractive to a potential candidate?
  • What differentiates you from your competitors?
  • What are you known for (technology? stability? fast growth? worklife balance? opportunities?)?

Also look at available “intelligence,” says Tarant:

  • Employee survey results
  • Engagement driver analysis
  • Focus groups
  • Informal feedback
  • Social media sites
  • New hires
  • Exit interviews

Try BLR’s all-in-one compensation website,®, and get a complimentary special report, Top 100 FLSA Overtime Q&As, no matter what you decide. Find out more.

Tarant offers five steps for designing your EVP:

  • Assess—Diagnose the preferences and perceptions of the workforce to prioritize investments.
  • Design—Create a compelling, differentiated EVP for critical talent segments.
  • Communicate—Drive awareness of the EVP: Create EVP advocates through recruiting and social media.
  • Deliver—Ensure EVP promises translate into actual employee experiences.
  • Evaluate—Evaluate and refine.

Design: EVP Attributes

Tarant divides the EVP into five categories:

  • Rewards (includes compensation and benefits)
  • Opportunity (the opportunities for development and advancement)
  • Organization (its reputation, the level of diversity, the commitment to ethics and environment, its position as a great place to work, its size and location, its technology)
  • Work (the job and its impact, work-life balance, travel)
  • People (the work environment, the coworkers, management)

Finally, says Tarant, you do want to be consistent in your treatment of employees, but you can differentiate for critical talent segments.

In tomorrow’s Advisor, more on EVPs (including a comment about Enron’s EVP) plus an introduction to the all-things-compensation-in-one-place website,®.

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