What Can Countries Learn From Employer Branding?

If you’ve been out and about in the streets of Tel Aviv lately, you’ve probably run into more and more campaigns aimed at recruiting employees. This lack of a qualified workforce is felt in many industries post-Covid, such as tourism and restaurants.  However, it is especially evident in the tech industry, which grew exponentially since the pandemic and needed 20,000 additional engineers.


Companies know that to succeed, they need the best people on board. Thus, they are investing millions in employer branding campaigns, much like this one by Amdocs, which pretty much says it all.



Corporations understand that to attract the right people; they need to differentiate themselves. And since engineering is, well… engineering (sorry guys!), the way to stand out is to show the benefits one would have by joining their team and conveying the organization’s lifestyle, culture, and values. Making money is just not enough anymore. Suppose millennials and Gen Z’ers spend a third of their waking hours somewhere. In that case, they want to have a sense of purpose and be part of a community (check out Deloitte’s 2021 Global Human Capital Trends Report to read more about the need to humanize the workplace to create lasting value for the organization, the employees, and society).


What’s true for individual companies is also true when it comes to the big-picture – countries. Countries and cities need to market their values, culture, and lifestyle when trying to attract talent. What would the employee gain from the experience of living and working there? What can we offer to add to their quality of life?



Denmark, for example, promoted itself as a place that offers work-life balance in a pastoral campaign featuring young urban professionals drinking tea in a field at sunset. On the other hand, Taiwan is promoting itself as an island of innovation and modernity, both cultural and technological – the perfect place for social and sustainability-oriented entrepreneurs.


Helsinki launched one noteworthy (and award-winning) campaign, showing a deep understanding of the connection between our ability to attract talent and the importance of embodying the audience’s values. The city is looking to attract tech professionals, so it researched foreigners already living in the city by asking them what they value most in their experience. Additionally, it asks potential candidates abroad what would be the most important thing for them in a relocation destination.


The research concluded that FREEDOM is a prominent feature people are looking for when choosing a location to build their lives. The freedom to create, the freedom to be whoever they want to be, and the freedom to live the way they want to live in a supporting and enabling environment. The Fins, who, on top of being relatively liberal, pride themselves on being quirky, took this opportunity and launched their Freedom campaign. The campaign included, among other things, a box that was sent to potential talents. In the box were various locally produced items that embody the different types of freedoms the city of Helsinki offers job seekers- welfare, education, LGBTQ rights, free press, a work-life balance, support in social initiatives, and more. Sounds pretty good.




All this said, what remains is to ask ourselves: What do we have to offer? What things pop up in peoples’ minds when they think about Israel? Are those things attractive and relevant to the values the next generation holds dear? And most importantly – what can we do about it?

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