Our employee value proposition – how we did it

Kati Kitti Talent Director, Solita

Published 03 Jun 2024

Reading time 4 min

We have been working with an initiative that is at the heart of our identity and future at Solita: the employee value proposition (EVP) renewal “Solita as a workplace”. In this post, we will explain what EVP stands for, what was our starting point, and what were the steps in our design process led by our Design Lead & Concept Director Risto Kantola. The renewed EVP was launched in March 2024.

What is an employee value proposition and why do we need one?

Employee value proposition, EVP for short, helps us articulate and enhance what makes Solita an exceptional place to work. It defines what our community is about and what our current and future employees can expect.

Our previous EVP, crafted in 2016 from the comprehensive employee experience research project Solitan sielu (Soul of Solita), served us well when we operated in Finland. Since then, we have tripled in size and expanded to other Nordic and European countries. It was time to reassess and refresh our EVP to reflect our current size, diversity, culture, and the evolution of our people.

Culture is an elusive, living thing, and it is impossible to put it in a bottle. However, we have tried to put into words the most crucial aspects of our culture, the things we want to defend and preserve. As a company that hires hundreds of new people each year and expands also through mergers & acquisitions, our EVP is also a crucial tool for us to resist cultural erosion as we grow.

Solita as a workplace

Five things that give our culture its power. Read more here.

Culture cards

Step 1: Understanding our culture and business

Our starting point was to build a core in-house project team and gather insights from various sources: Employee & culture insight (e.g. Peakon insights), our previous EVP and business drivers.

As our People & Culture team actively facilitates dialogue and gathers feedback regarding our culture, we had no shortage of employee insight. We worked closely with our management teams to align our EVP with our strategic business goals and ensure that it supports our long-term vision for growth and success. This collaborative approach ensured that our EVP not only resonates on an individual level but also aligns with our collective mission and business objectives.

The project team then prioritized identified cultural and business topics with diverse groups in different countries and roles. Armed with insights, we moved to the next critical phase: building communication hypotheses around what drives value for our employees, candidates, and the business.

Step 2: Drafting the right approach

We started to work on communication hypotheses aimed to pinpoint the core elements that make Solita an attractive and fulfilling place to work, as well as identify areas where we can enhance our value proposition to meet the evolving needs of our community and business objectives.

At this point, we brought in our trusted B2B marketing agency to help with copywriting. We wanted our EVP to be as concise as possible, and here’s where it really helped to have outside help to squeeze out everything extra. They also helped us make conceptual and structural improvements.

To ensure that our hypotheses accurately reflected the realities and aspirations of our diverse team, we engaged in a co-design process with three focus groups comprised of:

  1. Recently joined Junior Solitans
  2. Senior Consultants
  3. People Leads

These groups were carefully selected to represent a wide cross-section of our organisation, including diverse roles, functions, and geographies. Their feedback was instrumental in validating and refining our hypotheses, ensuring that our renewed EVP is grounded in the real experiences and aspirations of Solitans.

Then we were ready to do the final visual & copywriting polishing and continue with the roll-out.

Step 3: Making most of our EVP

The EVP is now being used in communicating our cultural traits and values when attracting, recruiting and onboarding new Solitans. On the other hand, it hopefully helps people to consider if Solita is a good match as a workplace for them – or not.  

After our team discussion around EVP, my colleague remarked that this is exactly what teams are for. To collaboratively create meanings, through close-knit discussions, about what Solita’s shared values mean in our everyday lives.

Liisa Kontio Senior Service Designer & People Lead, Solita

The material can be used also as a conversational tool in our teams for having discussions regarding our culture – both its strengths and its shortcomings. For us, it’s always important not to shy away from difficult topics, rather we want to identify where we are falling short of our ideals, and which kind of things are causing frustration. Only through this understanding can we address the frustrations and improve our culture further.

EVP helps us articulate and enhance what makes Solita an exceptional place to work. It is a communication and branding tool, which defines what our community is about and what employees can expect.

Use cases

  • All Solitans – Where we are and where we want to go
  • People Leads – This works as a cultural backbone, defining what employees can expect from others and themselves
  • Recruitment marketing – Build enticing campaigns based on EVP
  • Potential candidates – Communicate our culture during the recruitment process
  • New Solitans – In-depth introduction during new employee onboarding

Interested for more? Read our EVP. And check out all our open positions!

  1. Culture

Solita employee value proposition