Laura Lloyd headshot Written by: Laura Lloyd

Do company reviews matter to candidates?

One of the first things people do when they start looking for a new job is turn to Google to see what others are saying about the company they are applying to. 

They will scroll down the first page and look at different review sites to see what rating a company is given. But does it really matter? Do the number of stars next to your company name really hold that much weight with candidates? 

The war for top talent is extremely competitive, but we caution companies not to put too much stock in those company reviews, and here are a few of the reasons why: 

  1. Reviews are a great data point for a candidate, but they aren’t the only data point. 

We have gotten used to comparing many items that we use in our day-to-day life—this is something that’s very prevalent in the B2C world. We compare products before purchasing all the time, but candidates don’t just look at the number of positive reviews at each company. Many companies encourage current employees to review their job, and if those employees are happily employed at the time, then it’s easy to give a good review. Of course, that can skew those results, and candidates are aware of this.

  1. Review sites too often become a place for people to air out their grievances with past employers.

    You can’t believe that everything you read is a true representation of an organization because these sites are often a place where employees can let their feelings be made known, and they might just be angry because they have just been let go.
  1. Review sites aren’t a substitute for a candidate’s own research. 

Candidates who work with recruiters are able to get inside info into companies with which recruiters have strong relationships. We encourage candidates to look at a company’s website, job descriptions and social media to get a complete idea of this company’s values and what they find important. Then, if they get the job interview, that’s a candidate’s time to get questions answered and form their own opinion.

How to offset negative reviews

Reviews provide a small glimpse into a workplace. What do companies need to do to offset any negative reviews?

You can start by focusing on improving your company brand. In a previous report, ​​69% of job candidates said an employer’s brand strength is important or very important when deciding to accept or reject a job offer.

You can better build your brand by focusing on employee engagement

Employee engagement and professional development opportunities are something that is extremely important to candidates, especially in this current job market. 

Companies that heavily invest in professional development allow their staff and team to grow and further their career. This breeds more loyalty by letting employees:

  • Know that their work is making a difference
  • Get access to opportunities to grow their skills

It’s important that companies do know what employees are saying about them, but you can’t allow yourself to become overly consumed by reviews. Instead, turn your efforts to improve in ways you know have the strongest impact on candidates.