HR professionals are well-aware that winning the war for talent is essential if they want to decrease costs, increase retention, and help their organization perform competitively across the board. However, one of the hardest truths to face is the thought that your corporate reputation may be holding back your executive recruiting efforts.

Just like individuals, companies have a reputation that can either help or hurt them. If you have been following the news the past couple of years, you probably read unflattering stories about top companies like Uber and Amazon that have damaged their reputations and likely made them less desirable places to work for high-performing talent who have their pick of potential employers.

However, it does not take a searing exposé to damage your company’s recruiting efforts. Consider some of the following common reputation-ruiners that may hold executives back from accepting even the most generous employment offers, along with some helpful tips for rehabbing your company’s internal brand to help you land the right candidates.

1. A Lack of Corporate and Social Responsibility

With an influx of millennial talent starting to enter leadership and executive roles, you must be aware that younger high-performers do not just value compensation, benefits, and growth potential. They also care about an organization’s reputation for ethics and responsibility.

With social media and the internet spreading information like wildfire, all it takes is one failure such as the recent Equifax data breach to find that your company has lost standing both with customers and potential recruits.

Other things to consider are your reputations for other important social and ethical causes such as diversity and inclusion, environmental responsibility, women’s issues, etc. If you find that your organization is lacking in any of these categories, it may be time to address it and make sure you are conveying the right message to potential executives about your values. Remember that if your organization has made critical missteps, it is easier to deal with it head-on than to try to sweep it under the rug. Your transparency will help with damage control and may even improve your standing in people’s’ eyes.

2. Scams and Impersonation

Sometimes the damage is not even due to a company’s wrongdoing, but rather because the company has been a victim. Recently, job search scams have been an increasing problem since hackers, scammers, and thieves have figured out how to highjack a brand’s name and image to lure in unsuspecting job searchers and steal their financial information.

Since most executives are not applying through job sites, this may affect them less. However, the damage it causes to your reputation may still make executive candidates wary of taking a leadership role in a company that cannot protect its brand integrity.  Stay aware of such risks and always take the proper precautions so as not to expose your potential recruits to threats.

3. Glassdoor and Other Review Sites

Thanks to anonymous review sites like Glassdoor, current and former employees can share their rants and raves about their workplace for the entire world to read. These places are often among the first stops potential recruits make in their virtual job search, and what they see can either make them eager to apply or send them running in the opposite direction. Because the content of most online reviews falls under protected free speech in the United States, there is not much that you can do to quell negative reviews.

The only thing you can do in the face of poor online feedback is to respond to it transparently and honestly rather than ignoring it. Make sure you keep track of what employees on Glassdoor and other sites are saying and that if there is a consistent complaint, approach it as something to work on to improve employee satisfaction. Better yet, encourage your employees who are having a positive experience to also take the time to drop a review. People who are satisfied in their jobs can be a valuable voice of your organization and help your internal brand align with your external brand.

Thrive TRM makes recruiting smarter by making it faster and stronger. Schedule a demo and learn how you can avoid common pitfalls and make your executive search efforts more effective.

Inbound Recruiting