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Ensuring that the company you want to apply for is the perfect fit for you is critical. As a job seeker, the last thing you probably want to happen is to find yourself working for a company that does not align with your goals and values. Hence, researching and assessing the company before applying for a job or accepting an offer is a must. In this article, we will share the best tools along with some tips to help you evaluate your potential employer effectively. But first, let us discuss in greater detail the importance of doing this.
Why do you need to assess employers?
The most important thing to remember is that both you and the company should be a right fit for each other. Before sending an application or accepting a job offer, make sure to take some time to research your prospective company. This will give you an idea of their culture, values, work environment, reputation, management, and operations. You will gain a deeper understanding of their overall business performance, including recent successes or potential challenges. Thereby allowing you to assess and determine if they are the right fit for you.
Whether the company offers excellent salaries, perks, and benefits is probably on the top of the list of what you want to find out. Does their payment package come with benefits, such as health insurance, 401(k) matching, or paid-time-off? Do they offer flexible working hours? Are there good opportunities for progression? Well, you can figure these out by using the appropriate resources for assessing your next employer. You can also compare compensation data across other companies, enabling you to determine if their offer is fair.
While you can work on your salary and benefits to an extent through negotiations, you cannot do anything about the company’s values and culture. You wouldn’t want to spend most of your time in a company that doesn’t resonate with your passion and interest, right? Thus, it is imperative to look beyond what a company does. Knowing their core mission, their values, and the people creating and preserving their culture will help you discover who they really are and what it might be like to work there. Ultimately, this will allow you to make an informed decision of whether to move forward with your application or accept the job offer.
How to evaluate employers?
Researching and assessing the company for every role you want to apply for may seem time-consuming. Nonetheless, there are a variety of time-efficient ways to do this. To help you get started, we’ve listed some of the best ones below. Let’s explore each one of them.
1) Visit the company’s website
The most logical way to get a feel about an employer is to visit their website. However, don’t just glance at the ‘Home Page’, ‘About Us’ or ‘Careers’ section, and consider yourself done. We strongly suggest going through the site carefully to get a sense not only of their culture or mission but also of the overall health and direction of the company. Remember to look not only for successes but also for potential red flags or challenges. This way, you can get a complete picture of whether or not the employer suits your professional and personal life.
The company’s social media channels, such as LinkedIn, Facebook or Twitter, are great places to learn more about its culture and values. Looking at the content they post, who they follow or how they engage and respond to comments can give you a good idea of how they present themselves. You can also gauge their overall reputation by paying attention to their interactions with both their clients and employees and checking out the business reviews.
3) Connect with current and past employees
Online tools make it easier for job seekers like you to find out about the previous and current employees of your target employers. Reaching out and connecting with them give you an opportunity to directly ask about their experiences. You can request a quick chat to gain better insights into the company’s culture, the benefits they offer, and what it feels like to work there. Find out what they like best and least about the company, or ask specific, straightforward questions that will allow you to determine that you and your potential employer are a perfect fit.
4) Read industry publications
One of the most invaluable steps for a successful job search is finding out the financial stability of your prospective employer. This will make you feel confident that the company you’re joining is financially stable in the long term. While some companies make this information readily available on their website, reading industry publications can provide you deeper insights into their financial footing. Here are some of the top publications you can use as reference:
5) Check out online review sites
As a job seeker, you should take full advantage of all resources and tools online to get a realistic and clearer picture of what it’s like to work with your prospective employer. And this is where company review sites come in handy. However, with the increasing numbers of these tools, it can be confusing which ones to trust. Every site has its pros and cons. Hence, we’ve created a list of the top 10 most trustworthy global company review sites for you to peruse before pursuing an application or accepting your next job.
Glassdoor is the most popular website for employees to leave reviews of their past and current employers. It has an extensive database of over 38 million company reviews, management ratings, job interview tips, salary and employee benefits reports, and workplace insights. Employees anonymously rate their employers on a scale of 1 to 5, along with a statement of at least one pro or con of working for the company.
In addition, employees can also review CEOs or other high-profile business leaders known in the public domain. However, they are not allowed to submit reviews for private individuals for confidentiality reasons. Their team manually checks each review to ensure that it is genuine. Hence, Glassdoor is known for having the most in-depth and insightful reviews from employees among all other company review sites. Thereby providing you with a more transparent look at your prospective employer.
Best known as one of the biggest job boards, Indeed also now offers a ‘Company Reviews’ section on their site. You can browse millions of employer reviews from past and current employees. These reviews are linked to the company’s profile. So, if you are using the site to look for opportunities at your target company, you will also be able to see what their employees have to say about their experiences of working for them.
Apart from salary reports, photos, and company ratings you can find on the site, it also has a Q&A section. This section allows you to ask any questions to current or former employees of your prospective employer. With reviews across 63 countries worldwide, you are likely to get quality answers, which will help you make informed decisions.
CareerBliss is considered to be the one-stop shop for job seekers looking for relevant information on an employer. The site has millions of employee reviews that enable you to compare your target job side by side based on ratings, called ‘Bliss Score’. This score is determined through different factors, including pay scale, job satisfaction, and overall employee happiness.
Additionally, the site has some of the most detailed salary data. You can access approximately 6 million pay scales for more than 45,000 employers. This large database will allow you to compare the average salaries of employees by job title, company, or location. Consequently, this will help you prepare for effective salary negotiations.
Kununu, often referred to as the German Glassdoor, focuses on German-based companies. However, they are now expanding into the US market. The site gives job seekers an inside look into their prospective companies through authentic employer reviews. To date, the site has over 4.8 million reviews from more than 900,000 companies.
Like other review sites, Kununu has standard sections regarding a company’s work environment, career development, and salary information. Nonetheless, they took an extra step to add other unique categories. These include workplace safety, environmental friendliness, desirable office location, parking accessibility, and how challenging the work is. Thus, giving you a more transparent feel of what it’s like to work for your employer of choice.
Comparably is an employer review site that provides job seekers with a detailed breakdown of company data gathered from employee ratings and reviews. It has a feature that allows you to filter this information and compare it to other companies. The site gives an overall company culture score in various categories such as gender, diversity, compensation, and leadership. You can also view these scores by department, how different departments rank their leaders, and more.
The site has a user-friendly interface with clean and readable graphs and visuals. To set themselves apart from other sites, Comparably added a feature where employers can get in touch directly with candidates who express interest through the platform. This gives you an opportunity to ask specific questions that will allow you to assess if they are the right fit for you.
Fairygodboss is one of the largest career communities for women. The site focuses on providing women job seekers with reviews that reflect work-life balance, salary practices, and maternity and pregnancy benefits. In addition to reviews, they also offer career information. There are discussion boards where you can connect with other professionals to ask for career advice.
Fairygodboss provides a summary of whether women employees think their company treats men and women fairly and equally at work. Moreover, you can also see a data summary of whether they would recommend their employers to other women job seekers. This information will definitely help you land your dream role in a female-friendly workplace.
Similar to Fairygodboss, InHerSight is an employer review site where women employees can leave reviews about their past and current employment experiences. They can also anonymously rate their employers based on 15 different metrics that matter most to them. These include flexible work hours, management opportunities for women, and maternity and adoptive leave, among others. These female-centric metrics enable InHerSight to become popular with women job seekers looking for female-friendly companies.
h) The JobCrowd
The JobCrowd is a UK-based employee review site for recent graduates who are about to enter the workforce. The site focuses primarily on providing feedback for advertised graduate schemes across the UK. However, they have expanded to include an employer reviews section that features information on working hours, average salaries, and interview tips.
To date, The JobCrowd hosts thousands of reviews for over 600 UK-based companies. They provide reviews not only on employers as a whole but also on specific job titles and positions. These reviews are based on the premise of the best and worst things that employees experienced at the company, giving you better insights into your potential employer’s culture and values.
RateMyEmployer is owned by Jobwings.com, a Canadian company that also operates various job boards. The site displays anonymous reviews from past and current employees for Canada-based companies. With its user-friendly features, you can easily see the employer’s detailed ratings based on several metrics, from management’s skills, stress levels, and work-life balance to how recommendable the company is.
RateMyEmployer already has more than 36,000 reviews for over 8,000 employers to date. The platform allows you to like, dislike, and comment on these reviews. Additionally, giving you chances to ask specific questions about your prospective company.
JobAdvisor is an Australian employer review site that launched in 2012. Past and current employees review and rate their companies on a scale of 1 to 5 based on different metrics, such as vision and strategy, work environment, and salary. With the list of pros and cons gathered from employee reviews, you can get a better sense of your prospective employer’s values, culture, and overall reputation.
Just as how employers may scope out your social media to determine you’re a right fit, wouldn’t it be fair to do the same background check on them to ensure they align with your long-term career goals? Moreover, taking this extra step in your job search gives you a higher chance of getting a job from a great company. So, start applying the tips and tools we have shared above to land the job you will love at a company that you will love working for.
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