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Building a brand for your federal agency

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As federal leaders know all too well, budgets are tight and federal hiring is limited. But this doesn't mean that agencies should simply throw in the towel and abandon efforts to attract high quality talent.

Even in these tough times, agencies need to be building and refining their brands as one way of attracting top applicants when openings occur.

By a brand, I'm not referring to just an appealing slogan or tagline. According to my Partnership for Public Service colleague and federal hiring expert Tim McManus, your brand is "the essence of who you are, who you want to be and how you want people--in this case potential job seekers--to view you."

He notes that it is important to communicate the appeal of particular projects, the work environment and the caliber of employees in your organization as you seek to build that positive impression.

In addition, it's essential to articulate your mission and work in a way that resonates with potential job candidates. The mission can be a powerful magnet ,since many people aspire to serve their nation and want to make a difference in the lives of others.