There are many reasons why you might want to research the background of a particular company. You might be looking for a job and be considering whether you want to apply for a particular position with a certain employer, or you could be a journalist looking to put together a story, or a student looking to write a case study or paper on a particular subject.
Whatever the reasons, there are many different things you can do. What are the best steps to take?
Use the Company Website
A well-designed company website – particularly if they’re a bigger company – will mean it is easy for you to find sections like “About Us” and “Portfolio,” as well as information related to social responsibility and various other different things.
Yes, everything you find on these sites is going to be positive – a website is essentially a marketing tool, after all – but you’ll get a good idea of the vision of the company, at the very least. Check out all the information and you’ll have a great basis for your research.
Check Out Reviews & Articles
Reviews and articles can be difficult to use as they are often swayed one way or another. This might be because of the editorial position of a publication puts them at odds with a certain company, or because someone has had a bad experience with an organisation.
You should also check out things like press releases, like this one about ACPI to get an idea of what has been happening. As press releases will also be available on company websites, it is worth searching Google to see where the press releases have actually been featured in the news, as you can often pick up additional snippets of information from these articles.
Use Social Media
Social media isn’t for everyone, but you should use it to connect with people that are inside a company that you’re researching. Using social media in this manner can save you a lot of time and money, and you’ll learn a lot about the company as well as about the person you are connected with.
This is a great way to add credibility to your own work or to find out exactly what is going on around certain issues, as you can ask about anything you have found from external sources that the company or individual might not agree with. Never be afraid to ask what might feel like tough questions; you’ll be respected for it!
Find Authoritative Business Sites
Websites like Business Week and City Wire are perfect for discovering what’s really happening with a company. While reviews and articles as mentioned before do have some value, if they are not on authoritative websites they can lack the gravitas and knowledge of an industry.A regular journalist writing about financial services is going to be trumped by a journalist who writes about financial services every day, for example.
Finding out about a company’s background is easy to do; make sure you follow this track whether you’re looking for work or simply for information, and you’ll get everything you need.
Joss Mathews is a writer who contributes financial blogs to a number of websites. He is looking to find a job within the finance industry but is also interested in consultancy, although he is unsure if he wants to work the long hours associated with this industry.