Online reputation is part of our lives now, whether we like it or not. Everyone and everything, from celebrities, brands, and products, to cities, artists, and your next door neighbor has thought about how they are represented online… don’t act like you haven’t Googled yourself!

These days, recruiters can find, connect, and communicate with candidates more easily than ever before. This access of information goes both ways, which means that candidates can research potential employers in many of the same ways – what will they read about your company?

Enter Glassdoor

More than half of all candidates will visit your company’s Glassdoor.com profile to learn about your people, culture, and reputation as an employer. Just like with Amazon reviews and Apple ratings, this information can make or break their decision to apply for one of your open positions.

Leaning into Glassdoor as a platform takes humility, tact, and openness. It has become the platform of record for the performance of your employer brand, and for the time being is here to stay.  At it’s core is the employee review, and how you react to them, especially the negative ones, will show potential candidates a lot about who you truly are as a company.

Glassdoor has some great information that will help you develop a response strategy, so once you’re ready to lean in, here are a few things to keep in mind, stay authentic, and leave the perfect response.

Say Thank You

First things first, an employee has taken time out of their day to leave feedback on your company, so thank them. Thanking someone at the start of a response sets a positive tone, shows that you are listening, and helps you not seem defensive. And as Gary Vaynerchuk would say, a thank you goes a long way, and the companies that can say it authentically will have a competitive advantage.

Attach Positive Comments to Your Brand

Each Glassdoor review includes a “Pros” section, so hopefully the reviewer mentioned some of the things that make your company a great place to work. Acknowledge these, and try to attach them to something like your culture, mission, or core values. For example, if the reviewer mentions that your company has great career advancement opportunities, mention that this is in alignment with your core value of “Growth.” Be sure to take advantage of this chance to reinforce and build your employer brand!

Acknowledge the Negative

One of the key tenants of Glassdoor is that reviewers remain anonymous, which means you’ll need to take a deep breath and expect the gloves to come off. Reviewers will often leave criticism, even at the best companies, but don’t panic! If someone leaves a comment that is blatantly not true, defamatory, or believed to be written by a non-employee, Glassdoor will remove it – but if it follows the community guidelines, it will likely be left untouched. This is the time to acknowledge the issues being raised, and tell the reviewer, and the world, what your organization is doing about it.

Site Specific Actions

When you acknowledge the issues being raised, you can often turn them around by citing some of the initiatives and efforts you are taking to alleviate them. Cite your career development program that is improving training, your recruiting campaigns that are attracting top talent, or your recently hired Chief People Officer tasked with increasing employee engagement. You may not be able to change the reviewers mind, but all future candidates will appreciate your candor when making a decision on joining your organization.

Communicate Feedback to Leadership

Everyone likes to know their voice is being heard, and that’s what your response is all about. It’s also a great time to mention that you will be passing along the comments to the leadership team. This will show you are truly open, engaged, and invested in this process – but then actually pass along the feedback to your leadership team! This is not the time to stick your fingers in your ears and refuse to listen, but rather lean into the honesty and use it to make your company better!

All that said, the most important thing to remember is to be authentic. Find YOUR voice. Always take the high road, and remember one thing: You cannot edit your responses, so keep it classy, be true to your company’s core values, and listen.

Are you leaving responses for your company on Glassdoor? I’d love to hear what you always include – let me know in the comments below!

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