When it comes to hiring, you try to do all the right things. You hire collaboratively. You network. You engage. But if you're failing to monitor your company reviews, it can have huge ramifications on the type and quality of job candidates you receive.

What's more, you're missing out on a plethora of information, as well as letting a whole arena of your company's online reputation go unwatched.

Why you should care about online reviews

At Workpop, we study the way people search for and apply to jobs. Company reviews matter, especially when it comes to finding and hiring top candidates. 55 percent of job seekers have left an application unfinished after reading a negative company review.

Whether it's on social media or a job searching site, reviews about what it's like to work for your company have a range of influences. First and foremost, they persuade future candidates to either apply for a job or put you on their never-work-for-this-company list. Nearly half of all job seekers look at company review boards before they apply, narrowing their potential future employers to only the companies with the best reviews.

Positive company reviews also increase the direct referrals you receive. People who see a job for a company that has great reviews from employees and job candidates may forward a job post to a friend they think is perfect for the position. These reviews can also increase your visibility, both when you're looking for a new hire and even when you're not. And, let's face it, the more favorable things that are being said about you online, the better. It makes people hear about your company, be exposed to your brand, and become interested in what you do.

How to get and improve online reviews

If you're ready to take hold of your company's online reputation (and you should be), it starts with a DIY audit. What are people saying about your company, and where are they saying it? From your website to job boards to social media, it's important to know the public's image of your brand and workplace culture.

If the job boards and hiring platforms you use give the option of having a company profile, use it. Ensure your website is functioning, optimized for mobile users, and features a career site with feedback and quotes from your employees. If these excerpts are accompanied by an employee's name and picture, even better. It presents a more authentic engagement with job candidates, knowing everything they see isn't transcribed by a CEO or PR department.

If there are already negative reviews about your company, read them and take a moment to digest them. Even when negative reviews are unfounded or the result of disgruntled ex-employees, there may be a level of truth to what's being said. Perhaps the process of hiring was a little too intense. Maybe your front office area could use a fresh coat of paint. Maybe not. Yet if the same thing is mentioned more than a few times, then there's probably something you need to fix.

Accept and ask for feedback

Regardless of how you feel about what's said in these reviews, you must be open to feedback. Without learning to accept both positive and negative company reviews, you won't know what's working and what's not, or how to make changes that improve both employee and job candidate experiences.

If there aren't many reviews about your company, ask for them. Talk to your employees about giving their reviews and feedback on different platforms. Give them the opportunity to do it on your website, or in an anonymous arena. If you treat your employees right, offer them fair compensation and benefits, and strive to improve their employee satisfaction, then you have nothing to worry about. If you're not doing these things already, start now.

What it comes down to is that job candidates want to know what it's like to work for your company. They want to know why they should choose your company over another. Show them. Or better yet, have your employees show them. Let them see the complete and transparent picture that's created with honest reviews, and honest company feedback to complaints.

Published on: Sep 29, 2017
The opinions expressed here by Inc.com columnists are their own, not those of Inc.com.