Get online to share the good (and learn the bad) about your company image

Office favours like after-work parties foster a sense of community in the workplace and make it attractive to work there.
Office favours like after-work parties foster a sense of community in the workplace and make it attractive to work there.

By Jon Waldman

For the last few months I’ve talked about the tactics that a job seeker will use in finding a job through online means.
This time, I’m going to flip the coin and address the other side – the employer.
There’s a steep reality for HR reps for companies; whether you’re using a recruiter or simply doing hires on your own, a potential candidate is going to do as much as they can to learn about your company, and if you think they’re going to stop at your website and be satisfied, think again.
The reality is that with today’s web, there are so many avenues for potential employees to learn about your company. Your corporate website will start to tell the tale – it will show the amazing projects you’ve done, communicate out your message of the wonderful working environment you have and how your customers are thankful for your work – but there’s also the step beyond that has to be accounted for.
Some of these outlets that must be considered are:
Ratings websites – Gen Yers in particular will recall websites like ratemyteacher.com and how we would talk anonymously about everyone from the high school principal to our sociology professors. The same type of site exists for most industries, especially those that are B2C (Business to Consumer). These range from familiar sites like those for tourism (tripadvisor.ca) to those for renovation and construction (ratetrades.ca).
The best tactic in watching these sites is to register your company so you receive alerts when a review comes in and address concerns accordingly.
Social media – First and foremost: do you have a Facebook page? Are you paying attention to it? If you’re not, you should start. Reviews and comments can be coming not only from customers (satisfied or dissatisfied), but also from employees (current or past).
The next step is addressing concerns that come up. Simply pulling the wool over an issue doesn’t do the job – if a complaint is registered via social media, don’t simply delete it, lest the offended party take to other streams, ones that you may not be privy to.
Google Alerts – Setting up alerts for your company name (and a couple of your execs) is an easy way to learn about what’s being said about you in the news and in fresh website content.
This can include blogs, where an ex-employee may rattle off about the good or bad your company does. Sure, the posts may not be the most well thought-out for the individual’s own job future, but their raw frustration will surface – and with the potential to go viral, as we’ve seen with some complaints, they can do harm to your company’s hiring image.
Of course, these tactics will only take you so far. The key to projecting the image of being the type of company that people actively want to work for is to foster that sense of community within your workspace. This can come in several forms, ranging from community activities you engage in together or simple office favours like recognizing birthdays or celebrating company achievements.
Remember that salary and benefits alone do not make for an attractive workspace. Think about what makes your company unique and what brings you and your employees together, and sell that hard for the next job that you’re advertising for. The right candidate will come through the door if they know the good about your company.
Jon Waldman is a marketing strategist with Cohesive Marketing. To learn more about the services the company offers, call 204-992-6400 or visit http://www.cohesive.ca.

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