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First Impressions Matter: Why You Should Integrate Reputation Management in Your Employer Branding Strategy

By Universum, 2023-08-02

Why Glassdoor and Indeed? 

Glassdoor and Indeed are reputation management sites where talent can leave anonymous reviews about their employee experience, in addition to providing applicants a platform to further research companies. In fact, “86% of applicants are likely to research company reviews and ratings when deciding where to apply for a job”. With such a high percentage of talent researching their potential employers, you can see why it’s vital to showcase your employer brand and simultaneously, have a positive reputation.  

Why does reputation management matter? 

One of the employer reputation functions on Glassdoor and Indeed include earning a company rating on a 5-point scale. According to Jamie Hichens, Senior Manager of Talent Acquisition at Glassdoor, “Of the 700,000 employers reviewed on Glassdoor, the average company rating is a 3.3, so employers with a higher rating are an above-average employer, while those with a lower rating are below-average employers.” If 86% of applicants are researching employers online and the average company rating is around a 3.3, having an above average or a below average score can drastically affect talent’s perception of you as an organization, as well impact their decision to apply to your company. 

Retention is also impacted by your reputation. When prospective job seekers can better understand the employee experience at your company and can hear from employees firsthand, it reassures them and builds their confidence in their perception of you. According to a Glassdoor statistic, “67% of employers believe retention rates would be higher if candidates had a picture of what to expect about working at the company before taking the job, which likely explains why Glassdoor users have a greater retention rate.” This reflects how important it is to consider the way you’re showing up online and how you’re portraying your culture to job seekers. 

Whether you’re above or below the 3.3 average, there is always opportunity to improve and enhance your company’s reputation while showcasing your employer brand. We’ve put together 5 tips that can help improve your credibility, enhance your employer brand, and create a strong employer reputation.  

5 Tips to Improve Your Reputation Management Strategy 

1. Start Responding to Reviews 

Part of having an effective and positive employer brand is engaging current and former employees to share their experience working at your company. Ideally, you’d like every employee to have a positive experience, but there are some instances where that doesn’t happen. In the case that you receive a negative review on your Glassdoor or Indeed profile, what should you do? We encourage companies to be proactive and respond to both negative and positive reviews frequently, such as a weekly or bi-weekly basis. This shows talent that you actively check on your profile and make responding to reviews a priority. It also increases brand perception: “76% of Glassdoor users agree their perception of a company improves after seeing an employer respond to a review.”  

2. Embrace Employee Feedback 

Taking criticism is easier said than done, but it shows you’re willing to listen and value the experiences and opinions of your current and former employees. If you are seeing trends throughout your reviews such as consistent negative comments about a lack of work-life balance or subpar compensation/benefits, it could be worthwhile to investigate this further and strategize on what you could do to improve these aspects. In your responses, make sure to come across as genuine and express gratitude that your employees took the time to share their feedback.  

3. Show, don’t tell. 

If you’ve taken a writing course in the past, you may remember your professor encouraging you to ‘show, don’t tell’ when it comes to storytelling. The same approach applies to the content you choose to include on your online profiles. Rather than writing paragraph after paragraph about why you think your company is great, why not tell the same narrative through visually appealing content? Whether you’re showcasing your company culture, highlighting employee benefits, or talking about the work-life balance at your organization, take the opportunity to include visual content such as photos and videos over text-heavy information. It’s easy to get lost when there’s too much text, but providing videos and images makes the content more engaging and easier to digest.  

4.  Keep Your Profile and Content Up to Date 

Part of building long-term credibility is making sure you’re depicting an accurate representation of your company culture. Did you just hire a new CEO? Is there a new ERG that formed? Were you recently awarded for something? With platforms like Glassdoor and Indeed, it’s essential to update your profile often and include relevant employee photos, company awards, and organizational announcements. This way, talent can see you actively monitoring your profile and they receive an up-to-date reflection of what your organization. It’s even more important to update your profile if you’ve recently launched or refreshed your EVP. This is supported with the fact that, “4 in 5 Glassdoor users are more likely to apply to an open job if the employer is active on Glassdoor (e.g. responds to reviews, updates their profile, shares updates on the culture and work environment).”  

5. Engage and recruit employee ambassadors. 

If you’re looking to increase your rating on Glassdoor, one way to do so is asking employees to leave their feedback. Think about the individuals that are advocates for your organization and are involved in ERGs, leadership groups, and those who are powerful storytellers. Other than looking for specific individuals, consider sending out emails after company events. If you recently held an internal training session, a workshop, or an employee reached a work anniversary, consider sending them an email asking them to leave a review about their experience during these events or about their time at the company. Fostering a culture where honesty, transparency, and sharing feedback is the norm will only create value, contribute positively to your employer brand, and solidify your authenticity as an organization. 

Every company has a reputation as an employer. Utilizing reputation management to effectively showcase your employer brand and improve talent’s perception of you is crucial in the current labor market. How you show up online and how you show up for your employees does not go unnoticed. At Universum, we help numerous organizations across the world with their community management and employer brand positioning. If you’re considering advancing your recruitment or retention initiatives and don’t know where to start, we’re here to help.  

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