2018 Reputation Management Study
In March-April, we conducted the 2018 MRINetwork Reputation Management Survey,
asking candidates/employers across the U.S., to assess the importance of employer brand strength,
social media profiles and the overall evaluation of each candidate’s personal brand, to determine
how these factors impact the hiring process. Companies and candidates were
represented from a variety of industries.
SOCIAL MEDIA & PERSONAL BRANDING
• Eighteen percent of employers formally evaluate candidates’ social media profiles, and another 17 percent say they’re
considering it. This points to a growing trend of companies of making social media reviews an important part of the
• In terms of what employers focus on when evaluating social media profiles, both candidates and employers chose
questionable behavior or content most often. Twenty seven percent of employers say active engagement in professional
or trade associations throughout a candidate’s social media presence is second on their list. Nineteen percent of
companies also report that offensive social or political views are analyzed.
• Sixty-nine percent of candidates and 71 percent of employers rank employer brand strength as important or very
important when a candidate is evaluating a job offer.
• Candidates feel a lack of communication throughout the interview process and discrepancies among interviewers
about job duties are the biggest turnoffs in the interview process. Although companies often use
interviews as an opportunity to gather as much candidate information as possible, it’s important for employers not to
lose sight of a high-performing candidates’ need to be kept informed, and on a timely basis. To a candidate, an interview
is a two-way street.
• Candidates and employers both selected compensation most often, followed by advancement opportunties as positive
factors impacting employer brands. Candidates and employers also agree poor work-life balance and excessive
turnover across the company are the most negative factors that can impact an employer brand.
• Candidates feel referrals from current employees are the most important method for evaluating employer brands.
While applicants frequently conduct their due diligence via company websites and review sites like Glassdoor, employee
referrals remain a valuable asset that employers can leverage to attract top talent.
• Seventy-six percent of employers feel the interview process positively reflects their company culture, compared
to 64 percent of candidates who feel the interview provides a fair amount to a lot about company culture.