Considering corporate culture in the hiring process is essential to finding the right fit for a business. Many times people have the right qualifications on paper, but if they don’t fit into the culture of the business, they’re not the right fit. For example, if a company values creativity and out-of-the-box thinking, someone who is too rigid in their thinking might not be a good fit, no matter how qualified they are. Conversely, someone too loose in their thinking might not be a good fit if the company values structure and orderliness. Considering corporate culture in hiring helps businesses find the right employees for their needs.
According to Scott Nostaja, head of organizational effectiveness at Segal, a leading benefits and HR consulting firm, it is time for employers to change their interviewing strategies to build highly engaged and, most importantly, happy teams. How does he believe businesses can accomplish this? By going beyond relying solely on a candidate’s experience and looking for people who exhibit the right behaviors that fit your culture. Employees who do not adhere to a common corporate culture dilute it, detracting from the essence that gives your company its identity and aids it in meeting aggressive goals.
Nostaja also strongly advises interviewers to use behavioral-based interviewing techniques. These allow interviewers to assess and understand how a candidate has behaved in previous situations using concrete examples. Better than “What are your greatest strengths?” is “Tell me about a time when you had to resolve an employee conflict, what were the circumstances, what did you do to resolve the conflict, and what were the outcomes.” Values interviews may appear difficult, but they can be easily adopted throughout the organization and by hiring managers. Here are some recommended tips to remember as you work to create a values-based hiring process:
- Don’t just ask candidates how they support your company’s values; let them demonstrate it to you. Observe how they interact with other job applicants and employees.
- Be clear about your values and culture.
You probably do not want to hire someone who will fail and waste their time and energy (and yours). Being open is the most effective way to avoid this. Prospective employees will leave independently if they do not believe they will fit into your culture.
- Do not combine skills and values in interviews.
When you assess values in a separate and distinct process, you will almost certainly learn something that you would have missed if you simultaneously screened a candidate for skills and values. For example, focusing solely on skills may cause you to overlook a potentially great addition to your company with exceptional leadership qualities.
How Can You Hire the Best Employees Based on Culture Fit?
- Create your company’s culture.
35% of US job seekers cite company culture as one of the motivators for applying for a specific job role. Consider what’s important to you as a brand and the community you want to foster and let that shine through on your company’s website. It assists job applicants in visualizing what your company stands for. Extend your company’s values to your social media profiles. You will get more potential employees who are a better cultural fit for your company. Finally, you want to be authentic on social media, attracting your tribe while repelling the wrong people.
- Look for clues in the job application.
You can judge candidates based on their application when they respond to your job posting. For example, read their cover letter to learn what is most important to them and why they want to work for your company. An applicant’s cover letter gives you a good look into their qualifications, personality, and career goals. Identifying the right signs will help you make the right decision about the candidate. Have they read your company’s values and agree with them? The cover letter gives you a good idea of what potential employees can expect once they join your company.
- Filter the applications based on cultural fit.
You could assign a small test task to applicants to see how they will fit into your company culture. You could, for example, ask them to create their own About Me page or email signature as a fun test. It gives you a great opportunity to analyze their personalities.
- Discuss company culture during the interview process.
91% of recent hires attest that the interview process impacts their overall impression of the company. It is why, when interviewing candidates, you should discuss your company’s culture and values. Highlighting what distinguishes your company culture from your competitors will help you find the right fit when hiring. Being completely open about salary, benefits, and work schedule flexibility will help you attract the best employees in terms of cultural fit.
Reasons Why You Should Hire Staff Based on Culture Fit
- Employee retention is influenced by culture fit.
40% of those who believe a negative or toxic work environment would cause them to quit their jobs blame it on company culture and values. The company’s support for employees’ professional growth, a better benefits package, and improved work/life balance are all aspects of a company’s culture that lead to higher employee retention rates. Cultivating a positive company culture will also result in increased team expertise and capability and an inspired and enthusiastic workforce.
- A good culture fit promotes improved collaboration and productivity. It also fosters team bonding and collaboration, which leads to increased ability to reach the department and corporate goals and vision.
A great hire is more than just having the right skills for the job. Hiring someone who reflects your company’s culture increases the likelihood of a long-term, happy, and contributing employee. Remember, teaching your potential hires technical skills is easier than teaching them how to fit into an organization. Your objective is to get the best candidates whose characteristics and character reflect your company’s values. Focus on core values as much as skills, education, and experience when interviewing, and you’ll find someone who will thrive in their role and help your business thrive.