Candidates are often blinded by the perks offered to them by a potential employer, especially if it’s their first time looking for a job. While some perks are good to have, there are other more important things you need to keep an eye out for.
For instance, you need to carefully analyze the interviewer and the company culture. Doing so will help you find red flags and determine if the company is the right fit for your goal. Plus, looking out for red flags will also make it easier for you to come to a final decision if you get an offer.
Some of the biggest red flags that you need to be vigilant of are:
Red flag #1: Outdated or total lack of online presence
The easiest way to know more about the company is by going through its online presence. This includes not just the website, but also their social media pages, especially LinkedIn. Go through all their posts and updates and compare them to the general industry trends and to posts made by competitors.
No social media presence, especially in this day and age, is a big red flag. The same is the case if there have been no new posts for months.
Most people tend to overlook this flag; at most, they think of it as a minor issue. However, this is a big sign that the company isn’t too interested in staying updated with the latest trends or investing in recent technology.
Red flag #2: Ill-fitting company culture
The second most important thing to look out for is company culture. All companies have their own unique culture and you can easily get a feel of that by looking at a company’s core values, different aspects of operations, level of flexibility, employee benefits, the office environment, and the day-to-day schedule of an employee.
The ideal company culture differs from one person to the other and is entirely subjective, so you’ll have to evaluate if the company culture is right for you on your own.
Some general things that I recommend you look out for are lack of inclusion and diversity, especially if you’re a female, no scheduling flexibility, and extra emphasis on the fun perks. Mixed messages about the company’s values and lack of onboarding and training are also some things to be wary of.
Red flag #3: No opportunities for professional development
Opportunities for professional development are very important, especially if you want to move up. And for this, you need to make sure the company you’re looking into provides things like mentorship opportunities, leadership initiatives, and ongoing training. Also, make sure you learn about the continuing education policies. All of these can help you better understand how an employer can help you develop your skills.
If there’s a lack of such opportunities, you’re better off applying somewhere else. Otherwise, you might find yourself stuck in one role for years.
Red flag #4: Poor reputation
Before applying for the job, make sure to quickly search for the employer online to see the experience that others have had.
Websites like Glassdoor can really help in this case since you can find recent reviews from former employees. When reading through them, make sure you keep an eye out for recurring problems, if there are any. These can be related to salaries or even professionalism. If a problem is mentioned in multiple reviews, you can consider that a red flag.
You can also use LinkedIn to get in touch with former employees and ask them about their experiences. You can even ask them more questions for further clarity. For instance, you can ask them about the turnover rate and how well the company retains its employees.
These are just a few examples of major red flags you need to keep an eye out for. There are definitely many more and the best way to know about them is to thoroughly research the company before sending in your application. Good luck with your job search!