Capable and driven employees are valuable to your organization’s success. However, attracting top talent is not a game of chance. High quality job candidates seek positions with companies that current and former employees will vouch for. Therefore, online reviews play a vital role in whether or not your business receives interest from highly skilled applicants.
Of course, no two reviews are the same. Some are unflinchingly positive or negative, while many are more nuanced. To complicate things further, employees may leave reviews on a number of different platforms, such as Indeed, Glassdoor, Comparably, social networks, or somewhere else. Keeping track of all your reviews and determining whether or not they might favor your employer brand is no easy task.
Why Managing Your Employer Brand Matters
According to Randstad’s 2020 employer brand research for the USA, 80% of workforce leaders agree that a strong employer brand has a significant impact on their ability to hire great talent.
Half of candidates say they wouldn’t work for a company with a bad reputation – even with a pay increase. In fact, the No. 1 obstacle to candidates in the application process is not knowing what it’s like to work at an organization. As a result, 52% of candidates first seek out the company’s website and social media to learn more about an employer.
Essentially, attracting the best talent and keeping it long term is an uphill battle if you do not build a strong employer brand. But what are job seekers specifically looking for in an employer?
Software Advice conducted a study that detailed the importance of receiving positive or negative ratings on Glassdoor’s five categories: compensation and benefits, work/life balance, career opportunities, culture and values, and senior management. The study found that compensation was the most important factor in both attracting and turning away employees and that negative reviews of senior management weighed more heavily than positive reviews.
Of course, every candidate will value these five categories (and others) differently. Your employer value proposition must take all of these factors into account and seek to improve each one.
Job seekers are using sites like Glassdoor and Indeed to look at job openings, post their resumes and research companies. They also want to know about other candidates’ experiences in the interview process, as well as the company’s work environment and company culture. Chances are that prospective candidates are going to ignore your career listings if they see negative reviews from existing employees.
The bottom line is that candidates are watching for more than a simple listing on a career page. The best candidates are very intentional about doing their research. They’re looking into what the experiences of others have been, meaning businesses must embrace employer branding strategy.
Three Ways Companies Can Improve Employer Brand
1. Personalize your profiles to each candidate persona
You can post an up-to-date logo and create content based on who you want to attract. Glassdoor actually allows you to create a personalized view of your profile for up to four different audiences based on their background, such as engineering, creative, sales, etc.
2. Update your profile often
Candidates are much more likely to get excited about working for a company if they can see the latest milestones, product releases, community service, and other employer branding content. This is especially true when compared to companies that are a mystery due to a lack of available, up to date information or posts. Updating your profile often lets you show potential candidates why your company is a great place to work.
3. Track and respond to reviews
Many platforms alert you when someone leaves a review or comments on a post. On Glassdoor, you can feature positive reviews on your profile so that they are the first reviews job seekers see when researching your company. It’s also important to keep track of your reviews to stay in tune with what’s going on in your business and if there are any common threads that need to be addressed to shift the culture into a better place for candidates.
How to Ask Your Employees for Feedback
You cannot expect every employee to love everything about their time with your business. That said, you should not shy away from a negative review.
A bad review is more valuable than no review at all. For one thing, this type of criticism will open your eyes to areas that need improvement. Additionally, job seekers are likely to question employers with only positive feedback or few reviews, as these indicate a lack of engagement, sincerity or something suspicious. Therefore, asking your employees for feedback is vital for improving your operations and your reputation management strategy.
When asking your employees for reviews, you must be mindful of your approach. For new employees, wait about 90 days before requesting feedback. This provides a wide enough window for them to assess their feelings and report on them honestly. Do not pick and choose who you ask, as cherry-picking positive reviews can backfire.
Also, encourage honesty and make clear that negative feedback will not be met with punishment or disappointment. And remind everyone that leaving a review is optional. No one should feel obligated to air their opinion.
When requesting feedback, look at your current ratings on different platforms to see which ones could use more attention. Reputation management software can help you easily view this data.
And finally, send these requests to your people via email or text to make the process easy for them and yourself. Just make sure you send these requests at reasonable and optimal times, such as during the workday or shortly after work. Avoid sending requests late at night, early in the morning or on weekends and holidays.
Best Practices for Responding to Employee Reviews
Whenever you receive a review from an employee, you should take the time to craft a response. This goes for positive and negative reviews alike. Replying to all reviews signals to job seekers that you are committed to receiving criticism and making changes accordingly. That said, just as you must be tactful in how you ask your employees to leave a review, you must respond to each review with care.
As a general rule, be courteous and professional when responding to reviews. Think of what your best potential hires will think when reading your response as you craft it. If you display fairness and professionalism in your public reply, it reflects well on your brand.
If the reviewer purposefully left their name out of the review but you think you have an idea of who it might be, do not include their name. Be warned, your assumption might be wrong. But even if it is dead on, there is nothing to gain by unmasking an anonymous source.
Even if you feel a negative review is unfair or mean-spirited, present your brand as the bigger person. A good rule of thumb when responding to feedback is to adhere to the three “A”s: acknowledge, articulate and advise. Following this blueprint will help you learn from your mistakes, convey your message (stick to the facts), and reveal a path forward that will improve your business.
How Binary Fountain’s Employer Brand Solution Helps Attract Top Talent
Knowing how to properly ask for and respond to employee reviews will help you boost your brand as job seekers look for the best employers. However, without proper reputation management solutions, you will have a hard time knowing where to focus your efforts.
Binary Fountain’s employer brand gathers your brand’s reviews and ratings from sources like Glassdoor and Indeed, analyzes review data, and provides detailed insights into your brand’s performance across locations and against competitors. You can also hone in on specific employee satisfaction categories, such as growth, benefits, recognition, feedback and more. Navigating these sections will highlight areas that need improvement within your organization, which is necessary for retaining top talent.
Attracting the best candidates for your business requires a reputation management solution that covers all the bases. Binary Fountain’s employer brand software provides the data, insights and control to manage your brand and culture to assist your employee advocacy efforts, boost your retention rate, and empower you to hire people from the best possible pool.
For more reading on how to improve your employer brand, see these resources:
- [Webinar] How to Improve Employer Brand with Reputation Management Tools
- [Ebook] Guide to Managing Your healthcare Organization’s Employer Brand
- [Webinar] How to Improve Employer Brand with Reputation Management Tools
- [Ebook] Building an Employer Brand Through Online Reviews & Job Listings
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