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4 tips for improving your employer brand in the rating-obsessed Information Age

rateocracyBy Maurice Fernandes, Manager of Employment Brand & Social Media at Ceridian.

We live in an exciting era. Access to the Internet has given job seekers access to an incredible amount of information. Information about an employer’s work culture is a Google search away (and readily accessible on your mobile device). People now are more informed than ever and that’s a good thing.

One specific type of information that’s becoming ubiquitous these days is ratings. If you want to purchase a book, what do you do? You probably go on Amazon and look at which books got the best reviews from other customers before you order. If you want to find a restaurant, you look for one that gets five stars on Yelp. If you want to apply for a job well you guessed it, you’re going to look at employers’ ratings first.

The rise of employer rating sites, such as Glassdoor, has been an interesting development for companies looking to attract talent. In the past, companies were able to craft their own employer brand messaging and present it behind closed doors during the interview process. Today, potential candidates can access information about an organization before even applying to a position at a company.  Job seekers have already made up their mind about a company before speaking to a Recruiter or Hiring Manager.

How does this affect HR/Recruitment teams? What can they do to turn this risk into a benefit? According to HR BLR, the difference is night and day. People are moving from job to job more quickly now because information on potential new employers is so easy to find. Everywhere you look, there are ratings. The 2015 edition of the “Workplace Trends Report” from Sodexo says that today’s climate could aptly be called a “rateocracy” – $3.6 trillion in consumer purchases are being directly influenced by online reviews and social media. Michael Norris, chief operating officer for Sodexo North America, told the news source that this puts “unprecedented pressure” on companies to act transparently and adapt to the new reality.

With that in mind, here are four pieces of advice to help you keep up.

Adapt to the “rateocracy”

There’s no sense in hiding from it anymore – the rating-crazed culture is here to stay. It’s time for organizational leaders to be aware of their ratings and think about how to change them for the better. Take part in the conversation, don’t try to control it.  Keep your emotions in check; respond to comments instead of reacting to them.

Encourage your employees to take part in the conversation

Does your company have a social media presence? Allow your employees to contribute to your social channels. Encourage them to upload photos from work sponsored social events, team activities, or charity events.  If your company is being rated on employer rating sites, ask your employees to take part and leave an honest review of what it is like to work at your company.

Train your employees on using social media for business

Host a lunch & learn for employees.  You can have someone from the Marketing Team or a Recruiter who is active on social media lead the session.  Highlight the social channels the company uses & what the goal is for each (e.g., Facebook is used to highlight your company culture & LinkedIn is used to promote products & services). The benefit to your organization is increase participation by your employees in promoting your brand: both corporate & employment.

Build a vibrant workforce culture

Employees will be more likely to rate their workplace favorably if they work in a positive environment that they’re happy to be a part of each day. By building a stronger culture, companies can reap the branding benefits.

Maurice_Fernandez_retouch

Maurice Fernandes is the Manager of Employment Brand & Social Media at Ceridian and is responsible for developing and promoting Ceridian’s employment brand across various social media channels, events, and campus recruitment activities across North America.

 Maurice is passionate about building best in class talent attraction strategies, HR technologies, recruitment marketing, employment branding, and social media. Maurice has had the privilege of speaking about recruitment topics at numerous conferences, and through media outlets such as the Globe and Mail, Maclean’s, the Canadian HR Report, and Post Media. You can follow or connect with Maurice on Twitter @MoeRecruits.

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