By the Empire, I mean a company with a bad reputation. If you are a recruiter or hiring manager for a company with a good brand and reputation, it’s easy to hire people for your team. Almost everybody wants to work for companies like Google, Facebook, Amazon or Yahoo.
But, on the other hand, if your company has a bad reputation, hiring can become an enormous challenge. You begin facing rejected offers, and worse, possible candidates may decline a first interview or refuse to come back for a second interview.
Bad reputation will cost time, money and prevent your company from growing as it should. Your first step to solving this problem should always be understanding your company’s reputation because it is an important issue when you are conducting a search. A bad reputation can impede hiring top talent.
Identify the Problem — Evaluate your brand and reputation
Do the same thing that candidates are doing before interviewing with your company. Use Google and try to search your company’s name and yes you need to also check the second page and other pages on Google, they exist, so check them!
Visit sites like Glassdoor, so you can read reviews from your employees, get feedback from your interviews and you can discover interesting facts that your employees are not sharing with you. Check Twitter and other social websites, it will take time but you will discover interesting information. If you are working with recruitment agencies, ask them for feedback that candidates are sharing. You will find out what people in the market are sharing about your company and be prepared for some honest truth.
Good reputation does play a major role, especially for top talent who have the luxury of choosing between multiple potential employers!
Your company‘s website is the first place all candidates go once hearing the name of the company. This is the first opportunity for you, where you can change the candidate’s opinion on your company. Start with your website and don’t be afraid to change it. Most sites are all about the company’s products or services, but they are not sharing the company success, how cool it is to work there, what people are doing and that they have something that could be really proud of. Have current employees give testimonials about the improvements that have taken place; show your environment, new office space, company culture, etc.
Facebook’s career page tells you all relevant information about them and they share with visitors their values and how the work there its look like on one page.
Retrained recruiters and interviewers.
Poorly informed recruiters and interviewers are still one of the main reason why people turn down offers. From this experience, there is high possibility that they will share their experience with friends and social media followers.
Do not mislead or misrepresent. If people in the market know that there is a problem with your company, don’t lie, be honest. Admit to the candidate that you know what the reputation is and explain to them why you think this bad reputation exists. Sometimes people on market are telling lies just because they failed during the interview. Let candidates know the situation as best one can, and allow them to decide if they would like to continue with the interview or join you. Don’t hide anything and don’t lie to candidates!
Communicate with your team.
Have conversations with top performers. Find out why people are staying with your company. Use this information, create a story from it and promote it. If the company is so bad why have they continued their employment with you?
Don’t do everything that you hear that is bad in your company. Stick to your principals, your company is here to grow and you shouldn’t change everything just for the candidate.
Remember all interviews are a private PR event. You got all the information, time and audience. Use this time, not only for the interview, but as an opportunity to present your company in a good light. Even if you didn’t get the candidate, the intent is they will still walk away with a completely different image of your company.
A critical part of interviews is the people doing the interview, quality of a job interview is the employer’s responsibility. The interviewer (every interviewer) needs to act professionally and show respect for the candidate during whole interview, also they should be as knowledgeable about the subject matter as the candidate.
Ask for feedback after the interview. Even if the candidate is not successful, they can give you very interesting feedback on the interview or your company. Don’t forgot to ask candidates about their experiences of interviewing at other companies. Use this information to improve your hiring process and interviews.
Conduct exit Interviews.
People leave good and bad companies all the time, but the reasons why they leave often go unexplored. But you need to find out why they started looking for the new job in the first place.Reach out to employees who left a month ago, or, years ago and ask them for their reasons.
Stop hiring bad candidates for your team.
Your company is created by people. With the good people you will have good teams and they could help you to build a better reputation. On the other hand with a bad team you will get opposite result. Don’t forget, that your employees are your brand ambassadors. Once you hire enough good candidates who are a good company fit, the attitudes of current employees and the external perception will change radically.
Time to promote “new company”.
You have made changes and lots of improvements, but the next step is to promote the “new company” to people. Start with an open house. Invite your potential candidates and show them what your company looks like now. Don’t promote this as a “new company”, but as an event for everybody to see and hear the difference. Let them tell you what they think about your company, conduct surveys, and start discussions with visitors.
Hire outside help.
When you hire an HR professional or company, they can provide fresh insight and bring new ideas. This could help you to improve your company reputation (offline and online). But you should also ask what kinds of tactics can be used to improve the online reputation.
Ensure that your company’s image is well received by candidates; because this will help you attract more top candidates and reduce the cost per hire.
What has your own experience been with a company with a bad reputation? How is the company reputation affecting your decision to pursuing new opportunities?