Best of HR – Berufebilder.de® From now on, it regularly publishes the study results of Universum Communications, a global employer branding consultancy. In the first part of the interview Stefan Lake, Country Manager Germany at Universum, explains the methodology of the study and above all the employer ranking.
Stefan Lake has been 2011 Country Manager Germany of Universum Communications since February, the global employer branding consulting firm. His main focus is the development of authentic and sustainable employer positioning as well as quantitative and qualitative market research, brand consulting, brand development and communication consulting.
Mr. Lake, what data is specifically requested for the annual Young Professional study?
We have the Young Professionals for their assessment of Company as an "ideal employer", the characteristics that make a company attractive in their view, their long-term career goals, their satisfaction with their current job and their willingness to change.
And we were also interested in what motivates the young professionals to apply for another job. We also asked more about the career goals.
How many participants are asked?
From June to October 2013, 4955 surveyed professionals who are 40 years or younger and have at least one and at most eight years of work experience. Most of the respondents - 2428 in total - were young professionals with an economics background.
The second-strongest group in our survey is the engineers with 973 participants, followed by young professionals with a science background with 695 participants and the IT experts with 638 participants. The gender ratio of the participants is almost balanced: 2378 women and 2576 men.
What goals do you pursue as a consulting company with the study?
The results of our survey are the basis for the Universe Employer Ranking and for studies that analyze the factors that determine the attractiveness of companies.
Based on the findings of these surveys and studies, companies can improve the satisfaction of their employees and their attractiveness as employers.
There are many employer rankings: how exactly are your data collected? What makes you different from other rankings?
Our survey is online. The questionnaire will be distributed to young professionals through universities, alumni organizations, the Universum Panel and other national partners. Our data collection is transparent and comprehensible. This begins with the image of the employers' market, which can be quite fragmented in some studies. This is especially the case when companies have to make a decision to participate in a fee, in order to be considered at all.
We do this as follows: Each participant in the survey can choose from a list of 150's most relevant companies those who are considered as potential employers for him or her. Free entries are also possible. At this stage, respondents can name as many companies as they want. From this list of employers considered, participants select up to five "ideal employers". The ranking of the most attractive employers is based on this narrower selection of companies.
Is there strong fluctuations in employer ratings?
The rankings of the companies in our rankings are surprisingly stable, especially in the front ranks. But if you look at the development below the Top 3 or Top 10 companies, you can see considerable fluctuations.
The automotive supplier Continental, for example, could not place itself among the top 2009 companies between 2011 and 100. This year, the company is ranked 47 among the young professionals with an economic background and the 25 among the young engineers. This is attributable to intensive and successful employer branding activities which, of course, are also reflected in the rankings.
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