A Wall Street Journal report found that companies have unusual spikes in the number of reviews on Glassdoor. The conclusion is that more than 400 companies have periodically encouraged their employees to write positive reviews.
One example from the article is Guaranteed Rate, a residential mortgage company. Reviews were averaging 2.1 until CEO Victor Ciardelli asked employees to weigh in, shifting the average to 4.1 within a couple of months (now 4.2). Employees report receiving an email saying they have a “collective responsibility to provide positive feedback,” and asking them to “Please complete a Glassdoor review with a strong five-star rating for us.” Other companies cited in the article include Slack, Clorox, LinkedIn, and Elon Musk’s Space Exploration Technologies Corp.
Spikes tend to come in October, before Glassdoor’s deadline for ranking companies as the “Best Places to Work.” Glassdoor says it tries to monitor fake reviews, but it does encourage companies to seek current employee reviews, including those from new employees, who tend to have more favorable impressions of the company. Skewing ratings could hurt Glassdoor’s credibility, an issue shared by all review sites.
We could argue that including current employees’ views gives a more accurate picture of the company. What do you think?
How can companies encourage employee reviews without unfairly shifting the balance?
How much do you trust review sites in general? What can Glassdoor and other sites do to ensure credibility?