Dud or Stud? What Sources to Trust When Evaluating a Company

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In this day and age, we have access to a wealth of information, thanks to the internet. That includes information about a potential employer – important information that can help you make an educated decision on whether or not to work somewhere.

A tight labor market combined with job seekers’ increased interest in company culture has resulted in some companies taking reviews into their own hands – beyond their Glassdoor page. Amazon has a new program where workers, labeled as “FC Ambassadors” have taken to Twitter to improve the image of the company. These FC Ambassadors reply to Tweets about the working conditions, pay, company culture, etc. stating something along the lines of “Amazon is a great place to work!”

The tricky part of this new program is that ambassadors receive “a day off, an Amazon gift card, and some time away from packing boxes,” according to a former FC Ambassador. Essentially, Amazon is paying its employees to combat negative Tweets.

So, with companies controlling their online image more than ever, what can you rely on to learn more about them?

1. The company site. Here, you can check out the company’s mission statement, their “About” section, and even their “Investor Relations” tab, if they have one. These can help you feel out what the company’s all about.

2. LinkedIn. Don’t just look at the company’s page, rather the pages of its employees. Check to see how long people have been there and if they have moved up at all during their tenure

3. Google. Google the company to see if there’s anything in the news about them. You can always check out their Google reviews and see what their customers have to say about them

4. The interview. If you’ve used the resources above and decided to go on the interview, it’s a great place to dig a little deeper. Ask questions about things that can reveal more about the company’s culture, including: flex hours, telecommuting, moving up within, and even the team’s work style.

Keep in mind that for smaller companies, you may not be able to use all of the above to determine the company culture, so you’ll have to rely on good ol’ intuition. Though you can’t believe everything you read online (I’m looking at you, #fakenews), by using a combination of research tactics, you’ll be able to form a holistic opinion of the company before making any big decisions.

2 comments

  1. The web is a great place to research information. But you shouldn’t trust everything you see. Great tips as you have suggested for checking and evaluating online information about the company. thanks.

  2. Along with these – check out Glassdoor. Majority of large companies and even several smaller ones have a ton of reviews written by past & present employees. You can get a a great feel of what it may be like to work at such a company, especially since those reviews aren’t altered, ever. I believe Indeed may have such a platform as well. Of course, don’t get swayed by individual negative reviews – the platform can often be used as a venting ground by employees that may have been let go/fired/mistreated. Regardless, you can get some idea of the internal atmosphere at the company, so I highly recommend glancing over them for any company!

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