Creating an employer brand for a Northern powerhouse


By James Coyle

One of the largest NHS organisations in the country, is probably one you’ve never heard of. Until now, at least. Because with a new employer brand, we’re injecting passion and personality into a brand new story.

The Northern Care Alliance is an NHS Group formed by bringing together two NHS Trusts, incorporating five hospital sites and a range of community services, across Greater Manchester. We needed to create an employer brand for this new organisation – one that celebrated everything that was unique about it, whilst enabling each of the care organisations within it to retain their identities, too.

Cue the research. And lots of it.

It was a huge challenge that called for us to get under their skin. We’re talking almost 600 completed surveys, senior leadership interviews and several focus groups covering a range of clinical professions. This all helped us to paint a picture of who the Northern Care Alliance are, and develop the proposition that they’re ‘Greater Together’. Together, even greater things can happen – for both colleagues and communities.

Our next challenge was translating the essence of ‘Greater Together’ across all creative work. We crafted ‘This is the place’.

‘This is the place’ is a way of telling the many and varied stories. It epitomises pride of place and excitement in the moment. And, it celebrates achievements today, and in the future.

To create a real buzz, we asked for volunteers to audition to be ambassadors for the employer brand, and the face of it too. We then created a library of original photography, illustrations of iconic local architecture, a colour palette for each geographical area and a suite of bang-on-message headlines. These formed a user-friendly toolkit, to make sure everyone understood how to confidently use the new employer brand.

With a new brand that people believe in, the next phase is just around the corner. We’ll keep you updated.