Skip to main content

Company Reviews on Glassdoor: 5 Rules for Success

Company reviews

Here’s a first hint on why company reviews matter:

84% of job seekers would consider leaving their current employers for a company with an excellent reputation. If you’re working on effective ways to get the attention of passive candidates, then polishing your company’s reputation is not a bad use of time.

An employer’s image is a compilation of many elements: All recruitment marketing campaigns, of course, indirectly contribute to building the employer brand with their tone, their visuals, or the values they communicate. Other things influence that image more directly, like rankings, good PR in the press, or branding events and content.

But outside of those activities, you can attribute a big chunk of your reputation as an employer to company reviews. We’re a generation brought up on the power of a good review; ask the 40% of U.S. adults who say they almost always read online reviews before buying something for the first time.

Having a plan to manage these reviews is an inevitable part of your employer brand strategy. We’ve condensed all our best practices on the subject into the following 5 rules.

Have a plan

Don’t be tempted to short-change this first rule. You need to have a well-defined plan to monitor and manage company reviews; doing it ad-hoc, only when you remember it or have some extra time on your hands, is not a plan.

First, list all the places where your company is -or should be- listed as an employer. Glassdoor is the most obvious place to start, but there are other websites that post company reviews.

Here’s a list put together by Jobverse- notice that certain regions and countries use their own company review sites. It’s worth making sure your company is present and well-documented in all the relevant places.

Company Review Sites [image-caption][the top 5 sites for employer reviews & ratings]([image-caption-end]

Do some research on your current pages, on Glassdoor or elsewhere, to decide what your goals should be: What is missing from your existing pages? Is your rating below the competition? What image do the reviews project, and how close is it to the employer brand you want?

You will have a better idea of how much work needs to be done then, and it will be easier to appoint the right person to own the job.

Establish accountability

And yes, someone in the recruitment marketing team needs to be accountable for company reviews. This person will make sure the job is done correctly, by setting objectives and timelines, for example, and dedicating time to reading and responding to reviews when necessary.

Having one person responsible for this also ensures you’ll have consistency in the way reviews are managed. It’s also useful to align with this person on some general guidelines: how will the employer brand translate in the way reviews are handled? What language or tone of voice is more appropriate? How much time can you allow to pass before responding to a negative comment?

Guidelines are also relevant in the way your company will ask for reviews. And yes, you do need to ask for them.

Ask for company reviews

A profile that is bare of comments, reviews, or ratings is not very helpful for candidates -or for you. If you’re just starting to pay attention to your reviews, and need that Glassdoor page to look a bit more lively, then you need to actively encourage people to provide them.

Send emails to the company’s employees, or share templates with managers and request that they send them to their teams. Make it very clear that this is in no way mandatory, but that it would help build and define the company’s employer brand, as well as bring forward potential issues that matter to employees. You can find more guidance on the subject here.

You might be shy about asking for reviews from employees because you’re worried about potential negative comments. If that’s the case, keep in mind that truly honest feedback is a rare opportunity, and it will help you hone in on issues that matter.

[tweetery]"There’s not many sources of rich data and feedback from your employees that is authentic and raw and real — we take (Glassdoor feedback) very seriously." Pierce Marchant,Global Employer Brand & Marketing at Uber [tweetery-end]

Another valuable source of reviews is interviewees. Find an appropriate time in their journey with you to ask them to spare the time to leave a review on Glassdoor.

This should be about both the candidate and the company, and not just unilateral badgering. You want the candidates to know that you value their voice. You want them to share what they appreciated and want to see more of, and what would make the experience better for their peers.

Never get in an argument

It’s important to be part of the public conversation going on about your brand: 65% of Glassdoor users agree that their perception of a company improves after seeing an employer respond to a review.

However, there is an art to it. Responding to negative reviews in particular is tricky, because you have to address the comments, but you can never, ever, actively argue with your detractors.

Most of the time, this is how the review dynamic looks like to the public: You’re a big bad business, and whoever left a review is only an employee or a hopeful interviewee. And guess what? the only institutions the public trusts less than big businesses are the media and the government.. That puts you behind everybody, from financial analysts to academics to the annoying neighbours on the second floor.

No matter how unfair, misleading, or just plain malicious a review was, there is no way you will sway the public opinion to your side by calling the reviewer out. If it is reassuring at all, know that you can usually flag reviews if they are inappropriate. Glassdoor has an exhaustive FAQ on how to respond to negative reviews, if you'd like more detailed pointers.

Measure everything

You won’t go very far with your Company Reviews management plan if you don’t measure it.

To know whether you’re making progress in the right direction, make sure that you have at all times at least one measurable objective that you are working towards, and that you are able to measure progress on that objective. An obvious one is your company rating.

Another one is your ratio of good reviews to bad reviews. This article used an interesting methodology to identify an “ideal” good to bad ratio of 40 to 1; it’s not a bad place to start.

Try to also measure other dimensions of your online reputation, as they can provide more context to the company reviews on your Glassdoor profile. Set up Google Alerts, for example, or use social media monitoring tools to keep track of what is being said about the company. There are some good free options out there for you to try.

Take the time to dive deeper into granular data about your salaries or ratings, and don’t look at overall averages only. The Glassdoor word cloud feature, for instance, is a good place to get ideas for qualitative research on your Employer Brand.

company reviews glassdoor word cloud

Think of what tools can help you manage this aspect of the job more efficiently. Review websites like Glassdoor have a number of monitoring and analytics tools available for employers, and employer brand monitoring tools like ReviewTracker can help with managing reviews at a high volume.

There is a lot of well-documented research on the subject of online reviews in customers’ buying decisions, and increasing interest in their impact on employer brands. Managing company reviews, be it on Glassdoor or on another reviews website, can’t just be an afterthought.

Online reviews are an extremely important part of the candidate journey, one that should be planned as meticulously as events or nurture campaigns. Fortunately, it’s not hard to get started once you’ve decided to commit.