Here at Unilever, cultivating a strong employer brand is of the highest importance. Why? Because maintaining our position as an industry leader requires us to attract the very best in talent from around the world. In two years I have taken Unilever from a #24 Best Place to Work to a #7. In this blog I share how Unilever uses Glassdoor to showcase what it is that makes us such a diverse and innovative company to work for.
What is Glassdoor, and how do Unilever use it?
Think of Glassdoor as the TripAdvisor for employers. A global website that allows current and past employees to leave reviews regarding their experience while employed. The good, the bad and the (hopefully not) ugly of the time spent working for organisations can be shared with the millions of users who visit each day to understand which company fits their needs and life best.
Glassdoor is one of the fastest growing job sites in the world, presenting an invaluable opportunity for both job seekers and employers to engage with the recruitment space to a degree never seen before.
For those pursuing a new role, Glassdoor offers the means to delve deep into their potential future employer, leveraging a growing database of material that gives an honest and comprehensive look at what different company cultures are like.
For employers it can be seen as a fundamental tool in recruitment, and one that is increasingly crucial to building a strong employer brand. The data does not lie – 69% of individuals are likely to apply for a job if the employer actively manages its employer brand, so it pays to be active. At Unilever we certainly are, with no less than 10 regional profiles published in English, Dutch, French, and German. I am responsible for managing our entire relationship with Glassdoor, and work closely with each region to respond to reviews and deliver constructive feedback informing on opportunities to improve.
Our regional profiles present a pioneering approach that enables potential candidates all over the world to not only connect with us, but also to see what it is like to work for Unilever in their specific geography and business function.
Why is Glassdoor a significant asset for employers?
The benefits are many and varied, but here I would like to pick out 3 particular capabilities that have supported Unilever’s success on Glassdoor.
First, it presents a way for employees to be more engaged with the company they work for, offering their experiences and feedback as a means of supporting development. High engagement directly supports performance and improved attraction of talent, with 61% of Glassdoor users confirming that they seek company reviews before deciding to apply for a job.
Second, the depth of insight available to companies is unrivalled. Across Unilever’s 10 profiles, Glassdoor enables segmentation of data for each region. From categorised data covering development, benefits, work-life balance and more, to CEO approval ratings and reviews of the interview and hiring process, it is possible to pinpoint precisely where to focus attention as an employer.
Third, there is the opportunity to talk to a key demographic. With Millennials set to dominate the workforce by 2025, we have before us a generational talent pool that needs to be leveraged. Glassdoor is the ideal tool for engaging with the demographic in which 80% look for people and culture fit with their employer. It offers the platform for organisational transparency to support this alignment, and allows employers to manage their presence.
Transparency breeds trust – Managing Glassdoor reviews at Unilever
The value of transparency in today’s recruitment space is not to be underestimated, and I think it is a standard that all organisations should aim for wherever possible. Review management is perhaps the most important tool servicing this aim, with 62% agreeing that their perception improves upon seeing an employer respond to a review. My team respond to each review with a personalised response, highlighting what the employee has said and expanding on anything when required. If the review highlights a specific question or issue, we will suggest a response or a way to deal with it, and pass on the information to the relevant business function.
More and more, potential candidates require trustworthy, real-world previews of what a job is going to be like before they apply. Transparency regarding your working culture as a company is therefore in everyone’s best interest, and by going that step further in responding to any problems or queries, you are sure to be on the right track to long term success.
Promoting Glassdoor activity throughout our business
To champion employee engagement and motivate more employees to leave Glassdoor reviews, I have overseen the development of a range of internal communications materials that ease the process.
The internal communications are built around three core aims:
(1) Show what life at Unilever is really like.
(2) Show that Unilever are keen to take on feedback and respond positively.
(3) Provide regional snapshots of the workforce discussion.
Servicing those aims we have a series of posters asking “How would you rate your experience at Unilever?” to initiate the conversation about the importance of Glassdoor reviews. These posters are supported by a succinct guide to the review process, helping employees to communicate the good and the bad in a way that Unilever can learn from and use to drive our evolution as an employer. After all, 68% of people trust reviews more when they see both good and bad reviews.
I have a close working relationship with the HR Leaders for each of the 10 Glassdoor profiles I manage to promote the need for employees to leave reviews. An email briefing Unilever hiring managers on Glassdoor activity has also been used to reinforce our message.
The results I have seen so far have been fantastic with over 2,500 employee reviews posted at the time of writing this blog and being featured as a Best Place to Work for two years running. We always believe we can be doing better, so I hope this number will continue to rise with each review contributing to our efforts in attracting the top talent worldwide for all of our business functions.
By joining an engaged employer such as Unilever, you can help drive the development of a forward thinking workforce that cares about your wellbeing.
Having a strong employer brand is no longer a luxury; it’s an imperative, and Glassdoor’s Employer Branding for Dummies is the ultimate handbook to guide you through the process at every stage.