Are Your Online Reviews Killing Your Recruiting Efforts?

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Good mechanics that have a passion for the trade take their reputation very seriously. They refuse to sign off on unsafe work, don’t take shortcuts and make sure the job is done right the first time. They also demand the same of their employer and refuse to work for a shop with a bad reputation.

In the past, when we would pitch a mechanic on a new job the first question they would ask, even before asking who the job was with, was “how much do they pay?” What we are finding more and more now is that technicians want to know who the job is with and before they will commit to an interview they want to research the company.

The most common places they will go to research are and and they will jump straight to the reviews. If they don’t like what they see they will pass. Mechanics have options right now, we have written about this before and the truth is that there are more jobs available than qualified mechanics.

Mechanics know they have options and as such are being very selective with where they go. They have all been warned that job hopping looks bad on a resume and they are looking for a place they can stay long term so when they go online and see a review like this (from a company I used to recruit for: )

They are going to skip that interview and find a better place to work. Some techs are a little more lenient and understand there are 2 sides to every story and will still come in to hear what you have to say but even then you are starting the interview at a disadvantage.

Side note, mechanics are not the only people that take note of poor employer reviews. Good recruiters also look into this and use it to determine which companies they choose to represent. Some recruiting firms that are desperate for business will work on anything but at Rockstar we turn down close to half the requests we get as we have made it our goal to only partner with like-minded companies.

What to Do

1. Google your company – find out what is being said about you, you can’t fix a problem if you don’t know it exists

Go to Glassdoor, Indeed as well as do a google search on “working at ____” Read every comment and take them seriously. It is very tempting at this point to dismiss comments or to get angry at what you feel is not accurate, but you need to take a deep breath and take this as constructive criticism. This is not always easy as some of the reviews may be very harsh, but they probably won’t be as bad as this one:

2. Encourage Your Existing Employees to Leave Positive Reviews

Please, please, please do this right.

The Wrong Way – I once worked at a place where they asked everyone to complete an anonymous Glassdoor review and if you did one you could leave an hour early. Well, wait for a second how could we be rewarded for something that is anonymous? It got worse, those that didn’t complete one were harassed and questioned as to why they wouldn’t leave a review. After all the reviews were finally completed the owner sat down and questioned everyone to find out who wrote what. There were 2 that were overall positive reviews, but he didn’t like certain things that they had written and demanded that they re-write their anonymous reviews. Everyone (myself included) even after leaving, have been too afraid of this crazy person to leave an honest review for the company, who knows what he is liable to do?

The Right Way – Ask very nicely that employees leave an honest review of the company. Let them know that these will be 100% anonymous. Inform them that the goal is for recruitment and that their words can help attract good people that will become their co-workers.

3. Let Employees Leave Gracefully

Most reviews are written by former employees, how they leave your company is important. You want them to leave with a good taste in their mouth. When someone hands in notice let them go gracefully.

The Wrong Way – Same crazy person as above initially accepted my resignation and refused to talk to me or even look me in the eye for a full week (I had worked with him closely for 10 years) after a week he decided that I couldn’t quit because he was firing me. Truth be told, I had somewhat expected this and had previously packed all my belongings but still the whole “you can’t quit, you’re fired” routine is usually reserved for bad tv. In another situation, this same guy thanked an employee for quitting telling him that he was just about to fire him and he had done him a huge favour by quitting (why did I work with this guy for so long?)

The Right Way – When someone hands in their notice the first thing you do is thank them for their service, secondly let them know they will be missed, third ask if there is anything you can do to keep them and fourth conduct a good exit interview. Let them leave with good memories and good feelings.

4. Get Better at Terminating

If you fire someone, they are going to be mad and if they write a review while mad it is not going to go well. When you terminate someone, it should take no more than 5 minutes, thank them for their service and let them know that the company has chosen to move in a different direction, wish them well in the future. Do not take this opportunity to tell them all the things that you hate about them.

5. Respond to Your Reviews

Most sites give the owner a chance to respond to the reviews, this is your opportunity to tell your side of the story. Do this respectfully, thank them for their feedback, state that you will do all you can to get better. Do not get into a he said, she said as you will just come off looking unprofessional. This is the time to take the high road.

I hope this helps with your recruiting efforts. If you are having a hard time finding the right mechanics for your shop please feel free to reach out at 1-833-762-5787 or visit our site at We can work with you to not only find the right candidates but to help your overall recruiting efforts.

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