When we talk about a brand’s online reputation, we ordinarily focus on how the reputation affects sales. We want consumers to think highly of our products and services so we can grow the business.
There’s another way a positive online reputation can help you achieve success - by attracting the best, most qualified employees. Don’t overlook this crucial factor when you build your online reputation management strategy.
Potential job candidates will form an opinion about your company whether or not you invest resources in employer branding. Even neglecting this aspect of your company’s reputation leaves an impression.
Of course, there are elements of your online reputation that you can’t control. You can’t bully someone into liking you. But if you take a systematic and thoughtful approach to employer branding, you are sure to see long-lasting positive results.
Your recruitment process doesn’t happen in a vacuum. That is why you need to accept employer branding as a continuous effort to position your business as a desirable workplace. When you communicate your values and your business identity widely, you will differentiate your business and attract candidates who are a better fit.
The most significant factor that affects your employer branding is the job application process. If the process is too complicated, candidates won’t complete the application - and they’ll complain about it online. According to employment website Career Builder, 78% of candidates interpret the treatment they receive during the application process as an indicator of how your company values its people. That’s why you must design the process thoughtfully. Every misstep will impact the overall perception of your company.
Start by crafting a good description of the job and the company. You will be tempted to use superlatives to describe your company and the position, but you must resist the urge. Clear, accurate text will help you set realistic expectations and help candidates appraise how good a match they are.
Use an unambiguous job title even if it’s boring. That will help you target the right candidates. Avoid terms like rockstar, ninja, and miracle worker. They are confusing and they are likely to attract the wrong people.
Provide plenty of details about the job role and specific tasks employees are expected to perform. Your current employees are a great resource when it comes to figuring out realistic requirements.
Save the colorful language to your description of company culture. Tell potential team members about what your company stands for; just be careful not to brag about your achievements. Translate your core values into a digestible paragraph or two. That’s enough to give candidates insight into what makes your company unique.
No one has the time to respond to every single applicant. Most companies don’t even try. Even so, a lack of response is the top complaint among applicants who leave comments on job sites. Even if you are overwhelmed by the number of CVs you receive, make sure to write a proper rejection email to candidates after the first round of interviews or tests.
Online reviews on job sites
Reviews on job sites like Glassdoor correlate with the experiences candidates have during the recruitment process. Those reviews are influential. Everyone reads them, and everyone uses them when deciding where to apply. According to a recent survey conducted by employment marketplace Talent Now, 84% of job seekers consider a company’s employer reputation important when deciding where to apply for a job.
That’s why it is essential to tend to the feedback you receive.
Occasional bad reviews are inevitable. You can’t please everyone. But you can take action to mitigate the damage caused by bad reviews and encourage positive ones instead.
Set up notifications and alerts on all job websites that are relevant to your industry so you can respond in a timely manner. If you are finding it hard to keep track of incoming reviews, you can set up a tool like Reviewshake to automate the process. You will receive notifications via email so you can stay up-to-date.
Prepare a set of bullet points for responses so you don’t waste time coming up with unique answers every time someone leaves you a review.
Negative reviews are tricky. Make sure you don’t lose your cool. If you suspect a review was left in bad faith by someone who wasn’t even a part of your recruitment process, make sure to reach out to the website where the review appeared. Job sites care about their reputations, so they will generally take your complaints seriously.
Encourage feedback from satisfied employees, especially new hires. Explain that it would be beneficial for the company - but don’t pressure them or instruct them on what to write. Employees must be free to speak their minds. You can learn a lot from constructive criticism.
To avoid negative comments you need to create a working environment where staff members believe they can come to you directly with their complaints. Make sure that they have a safe space for internal feedback.
Website content and social media
You can promote your company culture in a number of ways that aren’t strictly tied to recruitment. Use your imagination to find fun ways to showcase your current employees, their achievements, and what makes them unique. You can post fun personal stories on social media or your company’s blog.
It’s worth encouraging your staff members to participate in these articles, sharing their experiences and on-the-job victories. The stories will show potential candidates that you are more than a faceless company. It will give them a glimpse of what it's like to work at your company and make them more comfortable applying for the position.
Online reputation and employer branding
Customer feedback contributes to employer branding too. Everyone likes to be a part of a winning team, so your company’s positive reputation at online review sites will help you attract more and better candidates.
You research potential employees, and in the internet age, they can easily research your company and executives too. If they see customers praising your brand they will perceive your workplace as a positive career opportunity and a great place to work. That will help you attract committed, qualified workers who can help you serve customers even better and continue to grow your business.