Ninety percent of buyers say their purchase decision was influenced by positive online reviews. 86 percent say their decision not to buy was determined by negative reviews.
It’s no longer just what’s said in passing conversation. Thanks to the Internet, there’s a long-lasting, easily accessible journal of experiences customers– and employees– have had with your brand. People check these reviews to determine not only if they’re going to purchase your product or service, but also if they’d like to work for your company.
Sites like Glassdoor, Vault and Indeed exist solely for employees to review their experiences with companies. They might post information about their salaries and titles, or about the company’s culture or management. And it’s not just for those who are unhappy with their positions. On average, around 70 percent of reviews left are form people who are satisfied with their jobs.
Software Advice, a recruiting technology research company, recently conducted a study and found that nearly 50 percent of all job seekers actively use review sites to make decisions about which companies they’ll apply to and accept job offers from. And it’s not just millennials who refer to the review sites, either—Glassdoor publishes that more than 60 percent of their reviews come from people with 10 or more years of experience. The study found job seekers of all ages are looking for the information they can’t find honest answers from in a job or interview. They want to know about management, work/life balance, compensation and benefits, future career opportunities and company culture.
If you don’t have many reviews available online, you may want to consider asking some of your happiest current and even former employees to take the time to review you on the major employer review sites. According to Glassdoor’s own policies, any one who has ever been employed by your company can do a review, even if it’s a senior executive or the manager of your human resources department. It is, however, against their policies to offer incentives in exchange for reviews or to require positive reviews.
What if you already have bad reviews? The good news is there are ways you can improve your online brand. For one, most review sites encourage employers to respond to any negative reviews. This gives you the opportunity to address any untrue or unfair comments in the reviews, and also to disclose if any true concerns have been resolved. Additionally, most candidates say they care only about reviews that have been recently posted (within six months) and are less worried about negative reviews from the distant past.
There’s another benefit to keeping close watch over your online employee reviews, too: It gives you an idea of if your employees are happy, or if there are areas in which you can improve. Finding ways to make your employees happy will not only help you to attract better candidates, but it will also help you with your retention rates.