How to research a company before you start working there

Posted on Wednesday, December 21, 2022 by DarcyNo comments

Researching the company you’re applying to for a job is important for many reasons. First, you’re better able to tailor your application if you do your research. Second, you can ask more appropriate, informed and insightful questions at interview. Most importantly, you can more successfully determine if the company will be a good place to work and a good fit for you. Changing jobs is hard work, so this is time well spent. Those in office support jobs in London often have the pick of companies, with transferrable roles, so how can you insightfully research a company?

Start with the company’s website

An excellent starting place is the company’s website. Larger businesses, and those which truly value their staff, tend to have a dedicated page for candidates which shares some information about what it’s like to work for the company. You can get a feel for the culture. You may even be able to see information aimed at current staff which gives a window into working life.

Find out who you will be working for

Ask your London recruitment agency for the name of the person or people you’ll actually be working for. This allows you to start a really effective LinkedIn search. Even if you can’t find out exactly who you are working for, you can search for the company on LinkedIn and should be able to find people in roles which will be future colleagues. Looking at their profiles can help reveal the kinds of projects they work on and things like how long they have worked for the business.

Check out all social media

Your social media sleuthing shouldn’t be limited to LinkedIn – it’s an excellent channel for job hunting information, but not the be all and end all. In fact, in terms of discovering what it’s like to actually work for a company, other channels can be more effective. You may find posts which reveal more about the employee culture on Facebook, Instagram or TikTok, for example. Find out what events the company promotes and see how they promote their values. You may even find you can pick out something to mention in your cover letter or interview which makes it clear you’re really interested in working for them. This makes you a really attractive candidate.

Find out what employees think

It’s not necessarily easy to find out what it’s really like to work for an employer. However, there are some avenues you can try to hear what employees think of their employer – especially for larger employers. Websites such as Glassdoor and Comparably reveal some information about what it’s like working for the potential employer. Just remember that disgruntled employees tend to shout the loudest! Therefore, reviews tend to be negatively biased.

However, these sites can be useful for information on things like benefit packages and workplace culture. You may even find that there is information available that gives you some hints and tips for the interview!

Speak to your recruitment agency

Your recruitment agency has probably worked with this employer many times before. Chat to them and get the low down!

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