It seems like every highly-placed business leader today is beginning to appreciate something recruiters have known for a long time: the importance of reputation management.
In recruiting, we sense the impact of a company’s reputation when we interview prospects. Candidates are often familiar with the company they’re interviewing with because they’ve heard the opinions of friends or professional associates. Almost everyone does some online research as well.
Many times candidates will relate positive things they’ve heard about a company; after all, they are pursuing a job. However, candidates also share negative impressions they’ve heard about the company, such as:
- There are management problems,
- The company is going through a major upheaval,
- Departments are understaffed,
- Employees are overworked, and more.
Frankly, these sorts of complaints can be made about all companies at different times, and solving these problems is often one reason the company is looking to bring talented people on board.
A negative reputation creates two problems for hiring managers:
- Many professionals won’t apply to a company they’ve heard bad things about. It’s easier to avoid rather than explore.
- Those who do apply won’t ask about the negative issues that concern them.
Addressing the first problem, it’s important to publish and circulate positive news about your company. Social media, industry news channels, and press release services are useful. Also, actively engage professionals during industry events.
To handle the second issue, be proactive and ask candidates if they’ve heard anything about your company that concerns them. Acknowledge any problems and explain how they have been addressed. Perhaps there’s new management. Maybe a reorganization is now complete.
By addressing these issues, you have a better chance at bringing the best people on staff, and when they show up for their first day, they’ll come in with the right attitude and expectations.