Employees as Customers: How to Handle Glassdoor Reviews

March 30, 2016 John Gorup

How to Handle Glassdoor Reviews

Many people don’t order Chinese takeout from a new restaurant without consulting online reviews. So if consumers research their next order of General Tso’s chicken, know that potential employees are researching the online reviews of companies. Glassdoor has become a reality for talent management professionals, and a potential nightmare for dysfunctional organizations.

But there’s no need to panic; organizations should not fear Glassdoor, but rather embrace it as part of a holistic approach to talent management. Here are a few do’s and don’ts for talent management professionals to follow.

Don’t ignore Glassdoor

No restaurant would ignore the online reviews of their customers. Employers, likewise, should not ignore the reviews of their employees and recruits. Yet according to Susan Adams in Forbes, “… only 12 percent (61,000) of the companies listed on Glassdoor interact with the site, despite the fact that for no fee, they can set up an account which allows them to write descriptions of their companies, add photos and updates, respond to reviews, and get basic information about activity on their corporate profile.” Glassdoor makes it easy to interact for free. So all employers should set some time monthly or quarterly to at least do the minimum to stay engaged.

Do make it a part of someone’s job to handle Glassdoor

As a general rule, if a responsibility isn’t given to a specific person in an organization, it won’t get done. At Appirio, Julie Barker handles every post on Appirio’s Glassdoor page, and gives people the option of responding directly to her. As Julie says, “This has helped people feel they are being heard, and we hear from a lot of candidates who appreciate that we read every response.” When actionable feedback is given, Julie updates the post with things that have been done based on the feedback. To a person complaining on the internet, nothing is more disarming than someone listening and responding.

Julie also regularly updates executives at Appirio with Glassdoor feedback. This allows them to understand what people are saying and adjust their strategies when needed.

Don’t try to game Glassdoor

Nothing ruins an organization’s reputation faster than getting caught cheating. Letting employees know about Glassdoor and that they are free to write their reviews of the company is fine. But forcing employees to write positive reviews is a clear sign that something very wrong is happening. For many reasons, this will never work, and the company that does this will get the negative attention it deserves.

Do see Glassdoor as part of a bigger employee feedback picture

Understand that there are many ways employees are giving feedback. Think about taking the employee pulse checks or engagement surveys you give your own employees. Exit interviews are also a great way to get valuable feedback; listening to people on their way out can perhaps prevent an overly negative Glassdoor review before it happens.

Do treat your employees like customers

Most companies think about Customer Experience, but their Worker Experience is an afterthought. Building systems and processes around the employee journey can increase employee engagement, job satisfaction, and ultimately, happier customers. We call this the virtuous cycle. If you are wondering where to start on your Worker Experience, one good starting point is joining us on one of our Worker Experience World Tour stops.



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