Employer Branding

How Bad Is Your Company’s Website?

Although “bad” has become slang for “good,” here it means “not good.” In fact, for the purpose of this article, “bad” means “truly awful,” as in, why even bother.

Does your website fit the description?

Like a Pro

A website is an important tool for recruiting, and top companies know how to leverage their site.

Large employers often have a separate careers site or section of their corporate website dedicated to job seekers. Here, information about the company, its culture, benefits, and more can be found. Open positions are also listed, along with instructions for applying, which may be as simple as a link to an online application.

A job seeker visiting the careers site of a large company rarely has to spend time searching the site to find information about the organization. What he or she wants to know is front and center, even if it is only presented as a link to a page on the main corporate site.

Even When Small

Small and midsize companies, however, generally don’t have a separate careers site, and dedicating a section of the company website to job seekers may not make sense, especially if hiring is sporadic.

Therefore, a small or midsize company’s website must do double-duty. It has to promote a company’s products or services, and promote the company as an employer.

Basics and Beyond

Fortunately, website templates make it relatively simple to create a site that looks good and is easy to navigate.

Nevertheless, a company determines the content—and this is where companies sometimes forget the users.

Remember, you want to speak to potential employees as well as customers.

Common Errors

With this in mind, here are common website mistakes that tend to turn away job candidates:

No location given. How will a job seeker know if he or she wants to work for your company if your website does not indicate where the business is located? If you have multiple offices or facilities, provide addresses for each location. If your company is virtual, let people know this, preferably in a way that speaks to professionalism; for example, “Our virtual team contributes to the success of XYZ Corporation from locations throughout the United States.”

Management team is a mystery. When a job seeker (or customer, for that matter) clicks on “Our Team” at the website and there is a generic paragraph about what the team does instead of names of individuals, their job titles, and photos, it does nothing to further the company’s image. In fact, for savvy job seekers, it raises a red flag. Your people are your company. Include them at your site.

No company history. A job seeker wants to know your company’s story. Is your company a startup? If so, who founded it and why? On the other hand, if your company was started as a family business by the current president’s great-grandfather and has been serving the community for generations, it is steeped in history. No matter your story, you need to tell it. When you share your company’s history, you provide context for the business and allow for personal connections. As important, your history positions your company as a legitimate business.

No information about customer base. Who are your company’s customers? When this information isn’t available, it suggests there may not be customers. If you’re reluctant to name names, provide an overview: “ABC Corporation manufactures essential components for the automobile and aerospace industries and supplies some of the world’s top companies.”

These are among key areas to address, in order to turn your company’s website into a “bad”—meaning “good”—recruiting tool.

Note: RecruitCon Road Trip East, which takes place in Boston, October 19, and RecruitCon Road Trip West, which arrives in San Francisco, November 29, include the session, “Is Your Company Website Killing Your Recruiting Game? How to Tell and What You Can Do to Fix It.”

Paula Paula Santonocito, Contributing Editor for Recruiting Daily Advisor, is a business journalist specializing in employment issues. She is the author of more than 1,000 articles on a wide range of human resource and career topics, with an emphasis on recruiting and hiring. Her articles have been featured in many global and domestic publications and information outlets, referenced in academic and legal publications as well as books, and translated into several languages.