Bad Publicity Leads to Recruiting Challenges

Negative word of mouth can affect your company’s hiring process.
Negative word of mouth can affect your company’s hiring process.

Word of mouth travels fast and can affect your company in countless ways. Many well-known companies are making news lately for alleged employment violations, including sexual harassment allegations, wage-and-hour violations and independent contractor issues.

Besides the human cost to the employees involved and the monetary costs to the company, such as legal fees, potential fines, penalties or other damages and decreased productivity, one other large cost affects companies: damage to company brand.

Negative publicity and damage to your organization’s reputation and credibility can also affect your ability to attract the best talent to come and work for you.

Seventy-one percent of U.S. workers would not apply to a company experiencing negative press, according to a recent CareerBuilder survey. Female workers are much more likely to not apply to a company experiencing negative press than their male counterparts, 79 percent compared to 61 percent respectively.

More than a quarter of employers surveyed (26 percent) reported that their company experienced negative publicity, resulting in a hit to their hiring process. Sixty-one percent of these employers report fewer job offers being accepted, fewer candidate referrals from employees and fewer job applications as a result of the negative publicity.

“In today’s 24/7 news cycle and social media world, earning and maintaining a good reputation can be a challenge,” said Rosemary Haefner, chief human resources officer at CareerBuilder, in a statement. “It’s easier than ever before for job seekers to research potential employers.”

On the flip side, positive news about your company should be shared. Nearly four in five employers who experienced positive press also saw benefits, such as:

  • Higher morale among employees (42 percent)
  • Employees were most likely to share positive things about the company on social channels (36 percent)
  • Boost in sales (36 percent)
  • More job applications (32 percent)
  • More job candidate referrals from employees (22 percent)
  • More job offers being accepted (21 percent)
  • Lower voluntary employee turnover (19 percent)

California employment laws can be tough to navigate and keeping your company out of hot water is challenging. CalChamber offers an online, interactive 2-Hour California Harassment Prevention Training, making it easy to educate employees and fulfill compliance obligations.

Gail Cecchettini Whaley, CalChamber Employment Law Counsel/Content

CalChamber members can read more about Mandatory Supervisor Harassment Prevention Training in the HR Library. Not a member? As a CalChamber member, you gain access to HRCalifornia, which includes an in-depth HR Library , nearly 400 downloadable forms  and close to 500 quick answers to frequently asked employment law questions, as well as other member perks and discounts. Learn more about becoming a CalChamber member.

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