Wouldn’t it be great if there was a website that featured all, or nearly all, the pertinent information you would like to know about a potential employer, i.e., salaries paid, benefits, overall level of employee satisfaction, CEO approval rating, etc.? And, wouldn’t it be even greater if this company information came primarily from input provided by current and/or former employees of the company, instead of just from the company’s own website?

Well, you’re in luck because there is an up and coming website that meets both criteria: www.glassdoor.com. But, in order to access the wealth of company information featured on Glass Door, a job seeker must first show his or her “hand,” by stating current (or recent) salary, writing a review of a current (or recent) employer, reviewing a recent job interview experience, or simply by submitting a “workplace” photo. Sort of a play on the concept of “show us your hand and we’ll show you ours.”

Once you have provided your required information to the site, you’ll have complete—and FREE— access to over three million (and growing) salaries and company reviews, as well as a wealth of other important information that can greatly assist you during your job search.

Here is just a general overview of the types of information available to you, as well as the functions you can perform, on Glass Door:

  • Company reviews. You can sort company reviews by relevance (to you), total number of reviews, overall company rating, CEO approval rating, industry and by job type and description.
  • JobScope. You can use this site feature to quickly and easily browse job listings and then preview what it is really like to work at a particular company, at least from the viewpoint of current and/or former employees of the company. Simply click on the “Look Inside” tab if you want to see just a snapshot of the company information.
  • Post a company review, current/recent salary, other information. If you provided, say, only a salary amount to satisfy the site’s registration requirement, and now you want to write your own review of an employer or provide other company information, the site makes it easy for you to do that.
  • Interview questions. Want to get a taste of the types of interview questions that might be asked by certain companies? You can review some of those on the site and even add interview questions you have recently been asked by companies where you have applied.

All Information Submitted Anonymously

Any information you submit to the site is done so anonymously, which at least has the potential for being a “two-edged” sword. On the one hand, anonymity can encourage a far greater degree of honesty and candidness on the part of the employee/former employee providing company information to the site. On the other hand, however, it can also increase the risk that the site could easily evolve into nothing more than a “gripe” site, a forum for disgruntled employees/former employees who will jump at the chance to “get even” with a particular company or persons within a company.

Site management has taken steps to keep everyone—and every review, comment, etc.—“honest” by screening all submissions before posting them to the site. Is this a “perfect” system for avoiding all potential abuses? Of course not, but it seems to me that the site consistently takes “the high road” by posting only constructive criticism, thereby avoiding the posting of potentially libelous, strongly biased opinions/reviews. This approach, however, certainly doesn’t satisfy all would-be contributors to the site.

One review that I read of the site was written by a woman who claimed that the site shies away from posting negative (or even borderline negative) reviews of companies which advertise on the site. (Not unexpectedly, the site did not post a company review she had written and submitted for posting, and she alleged the reason for the site’s refusal to run the review was because the company advertised on the site.) To be honest about it, I find that rather hard to believe. Why? Because, if you think about it, the site is “selling,” essentially, just one thing: Credibility. Anything that diminishes that credibility also diminishes the site’s ultimate growth potential!

How You Can Capitalize On Information From Glass Door

So, once you have gleaned valuable information about companies you would perhaps like to approach during your job search, or even about companies that you may already have interviewed with, how can you use the information to your advantage? One of the principal things you should be able to reasonably and quickly determine (or at least, be able to infer) is how much in (or out) of sync your unique professional brand appears to be with regard to the company’s culture, management style/approach, competitive market position and a number of other equally important considerations. Certainly, this could save you valuable time and energy pursuing companies that might ultimately prove to be a “bad fit” for you.

Under the Glass Door site logo is this theme line:

“An inside (emphasis mine) look at jobs & companies”

Based upon what I have thus far seen of the site, this is precisely what Glass Door seems to deliver, and the “glass door” metaphor indeed appears to be a good—and accurate—one.

Do yourself a favor and at least check out Glass Door (www.glassdoor.com). Navigating through the site is both quick and easy and very intuitive. Plus, the valuable information available to you on the site could end up saving you countless hours of research that would otherwise have to be conducted among numerous other sites and sources. And, armed with “the straight scoop” provided by current or former employees of a company, you can more quickly and easily find the company (or companies) that is/are best suited for your unique personality and professional brand. It could also prevent you from making a career decision that you could soon end up regretting!

As always, I would welcome your feedback. I would love to learn about your experiences with and your comments about Glass Door. Email me at [email protected].


Skip Freeman is the author of “Headhunter” Hiring Secrets: The Rules of the Hiring Game Have Changed . . . Forever! and is the President and Chief Executive Officer of The HTW Group (Hire to Win), an Atlanta, GA, Metropolitan Area Executive Search Firm. Specializing in the placement of sales, engineering, manufacturing and R&D professionals, he has developed powerful techniques that help companies hire the best and help the best get hired.