When you are job searching, it's important to read company reviews to get the inside scoop on the organization. Company reviews are written by current and former employees, and provide useful details about a company. Reviews provide information on the company culture, the managers, the hiring process, salaries, and more. Company reviews and ratings are available for just about every major company and many smaller employers.
In general, the more information you have about a company, the better prepared you'll be to interview and to make an informed decision if you get a job offer.
Read below for information on how to use company reviews, websites that contain company reviews, and other strategies for learning about a company.
How to Use Company Reviews
Looking at company reviews can be useful at every step in the job process. When you are in the early stages of your job search, looking at reviews can be a helpful way to decide what companies you might want to work for. If a company has very good reviews but does not have any current job listings, you might consider sending a cold contact cover letter.
You can also use company reviews to help you prepare for a job interview. Some company reviews focus on what the hiring process is like. They might even include common interview questions. Practice answering these questions to prepare for your interview.
Finally, you can use these company reviews to help you decide whether or not to accept a job offer. If you are deciding between two jobs, or are on the fence about whether or not you want a job, company reviews can help you decide if the company is one you want to work for.
How to Find Company Reviews and Ratings
There are websites where you can read company reviews written by real people. Employees and former employees review the company where they worked or currently work. Site visitors can read about the company, what it is like to work there, get sample interview questions that have been asked by hiring managers, and post their company reviews.
Do keep in mind that the company reviews on all these sites are posted by individuals, including possibly disgruntled employees. So use them as a tool to help gather more information about a company, but don't count on them as 100% accurate, because every employee's experience is different.
Company Review Sites
Glassdoor, the company, and salary research site has excellent information for job seekers including company reviews, ratings, salaries, CEO approval ratings, competitors, and much more company information. Job seekers can find and anonymously share company reviews, ratings, and salary details.
Vault is another source of company reviews. Site visitors can read company reviews, and get the latest information on over 10,000 companies. Company overviews are free, which is all you need most of the time. You'll need to pay a fee if you want more details.
There are also sites that don't contain actual company reviews but do provide basic company information that's useful for job seekers. For another quick overview, Hoovers.com has a large company directory. Again, you'll need a subscription for detailed information, but the basics are free.
Check With Your Connections
Another way to get inside information is to check who you're connected to at the company on LinkedIn. Ask your connections what they can tell you about the company and what it's like to work there. You might even arrange an informational interview with a friend or acquaintance to get even more information on the company.
Company Websites and More
Company websites are another great way to learn about a company. Most websites have an “About Us” page that contains information on their mission statement, company culture, and more.
Searching by company name on Google is another way to find information about companies. Search YouTube as well. You may find company produced videos with information on employment opportunities and company culture.
Company websites and company-produced videos can be very useful when writing your cover letter or interview. Referring to information on the company website in a cover letter or during an interview can show that you have done your research, and can help you demonstrate that you want to work for that specific company.
However, when using a company website to learn about a company’s culture, keep in mind that the website is designed to show the company in the best light. Talking with current and former employees, and checking out company reviews, are great ways to gain a more balanced understanding of a company.