A company’s brand is an aggregate of soft aspects like culture, competencies, values, vision, mission, and reputation. As your company’s organic ambassadors, your employees are key proponents of this brand. In fact, their own personal reputation can rub off on your corporate brand, reflect it, influence it, and impact it in both good ways and bad.
Consider the recent controversy at the Hertfordshire Police Department over an officer being fired for a history of misconduct. PC Ben Pitelen’s past transgressions were discovered only during an investigation of their later but similar offences committed while on duty. Their negative reputation spells serious implications for the image of the entire constabulary, compromising the public’s trust and confidence in the police.
Employee reputation has a significant effect on company reputation
There are numerous other examples of organisations suffering reputation crises due to the actions of individual employees. They frequently have no choice but to fire the errant employee and go into crisis management mode. Even a political leviathan like the US Democratic Party behaved in a similar manner last year when they pushed for New York Governor Andrew Cuomo’s resignation over sexual harassment allegations.
Frequent cases of business reputation crisis emerging from stakeholder actions only go to show that companies are always at risk from their people. Whether it is unethical actions by C-suite executives, general employee misconduct, or controversial social media posts by business leaders, an organisation’s company reputation is intrinsically linked to the personal reputation of its employees and clients.
The Internet amplifies reputation risks to individuals and brands
There are close to 5 billion people on the internet today, all contributing to the ever-rising volume of internet activity. This means there is also a steady rise in the volume of inappropriate behaviour online, which has become a key source of risk for individuals and brands alike.
Consider the fact that 2% of all hate crimes in the UK alone are now being committed online.
Inappropriate online behaviour can repeat itself at the workplace.
There is a strong correlation between online behaviour and real-world actions. Your prospective employee may have a tendency of making hate speech online, which may go undetected if you do not conduct a proper reputation check during hiring. Chances are they will continue to behave similarly while employed, damaging their own reputation and compromising your company’s.
Such an employee poses a reputation risk for you as an employer. A risk may snowball into a crisis and the consequent damage to your brand value can be massive. From accelerated staff turnover and negligent-hiring lawsuits to losses running up to $240,000, the cost of a bad hire can be much higher than you think.
Good risk management begins with online reputation checks
This is where good risk management practices come into play. Companies are increasingly turning to smart technology to navigate the quagmire of digital-age risks. When it comes to running employee reputation checks, for example, online tools like Yoono are becoming more popular by the day.
Research shows that 8 out of 10 jobseekers tend to misrepresent themselves in job applications. So, employers have to conduct online reputation checks as part of their candidate screening and vetting measures. But the sheer volume of information on the internet means that traditional recruitment checks are no longer enough.
Aligning recruitment check measures with the latest technology
Manually sifting through gigabytes of data may cause critical information to go undetected. You may miss behavioural red flags in a candidate or indications of their lack of cultural fit with your organisation. But a professional reputation checking tool can make the process automated, and thereby, a lot easier, quicker, and cost-effective.
The smart way to do online reputation and recruitment checks
Third-party reputation checkers like Yoono use the latest technology to search through hundreds of websites and massive volumes of online data to produce quick and consistent results. They can help you conduct thorough reputation screening of employees to assess and mitigate reputation risks to your brand, saving you time and money in the process.
The smart algorithms simplify the process of ongoing search and monitoring and provide real-time insights while fulfiling the tricky aspects of legal and ethical compliance. Think candidate rights, data privacy, and search bias! Through the consistency and thoroughness of a credible third-party tool, you get a continuous safeguard for your company reputation and peace of mind for yourself.
Make the best of the reputation economy with the right tools
Employee reputation checks are necessary to identify areas of concern in their candidature and potential risk to you as an employer. Think of them as an extended KYC for an employee’s qualifications, experience, character, behaviour, beliefs, values, and other key attributes. It is the cornerstone of data-driven hiring, used to identify employee potential and predict hiring outcomes.
Smart reputation management starts with this understanding that an online reputation check can make or break your next hiring decision. Streamline yours today by investing in a professional reputation check service like Yoono that helps fulfil due diligence and at the same time galvanizes your reputation management practices.