High Employee Turnover Equals High Costs

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Can You Afford to Ignore Your Online Reputation?

By Robert Teal, CCP, CBP

In today’s environment of ubiquitous social media, job seekers have unprecedented access to information about an organization’s workforce stability, turnover, and culture. As much as an out-of-work employee may need and want a job, many talented workers shy away from an employer with a poor workforce reputation.

Paul Shread, writing for Time’s Business and Money on March 01, 2013, stated, “Want to hire great employees and keep them happy? Make sure you have a good social media reputation.” Shread went on to report that 47% of employees consider an employer’s social media reputation as important as the job offer. Furthermore, 27% of employers perceive that social media DOES figure into a job seeker’s calculus when evaluating employment offers. Shread’s comments were adapted from “Companies Struggle to Leverage Social Media” authored by Dennis McCafferty of Baseline Magazine.

Sharon Horrigan, an independent writing and editing professional, writing for the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM), on 5/9/2013 notes that just as job candidates should police social media sites for their own embarrassing posts, organizations should manage their online public face as well for misleading, false, and incorrect allegations. Horrigan points out that a 2012 Stanford University and the Conference Board study found that only 32% of “senior executive” track their organization’s social media reputation.

Certainly employers have had to deal with bad publicity in print, radio, and television for decades. However, mainstream media is staffed by professional journalists who generally pride themselves on reporting substantiated facts. Unfortunately, social media allows any aggrieved customer, employee, vendor or ordinary citizen to voice their grievances, factual or not.

So, it begs the question, can any organization ignore its reputation on various social media sites? Can an employer disregard its online reputation and face the loss of potential job candidates and employees? Can an organization allow unfounded, misleading or incorrect statements to circulate to potentially hundreds or thousands of future employees not to mention customers? Is it acceptable to lose even a few top candidates or employees due to the organization’s failure to actively police it public image?


About the Guest Author, Robert Teal, CCP, CBP

Robert Teal, CCP, CBP

Robert Teal

Robert Teal is a Senior Human Resource leader with demonstrated ability to deliver cost effective solutions in the areas of research, design, implementation, communication, & administration of employee compensation and benefit plans and HR/Payroll systems. Robert Teal’s blog: Trends in Total Employee Rewards.



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