3 Strategies for Recruiting Candidates That Fit Your Culture Perfectly

by Dora Wang on Apr 13, 2015 11:00:00 AM

Optimized-iStock_000012634695_DoubleEnsuring a candidate fits in your company means measuring more than the open position’s skill set. Outdated recruitment strategies look line by line on the job requirement — at least five years in marketing role, overseeing budget, bachelor's degree— but in today’s workplace, this is not enough. More important than measuring work experience is making sure a person will fit your culture.

A survey by Cubiks found:

  • 82% of companies say they think measuring cultural fit is important
  • 75% of companies say cultural fit indicates job performance “well to very well”
  • Only 32% of respondents said their organization measures cultural fit in recruitment, but 59% of respondents have rejected candidates based on their lack of cultural fit

If that last stat wasn’t strange enough — how can you reject someone for cultural fit if you’re not measuring cultural fit? — let’s put the rest of these numbers into stranger context: despite all of this high awareness of cultural fit and its importance, only 54% say their company has a clear definition of its culture. Clearly, many companies have a lot of work to do.

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So What Is Your Culture?

There’s only one possible starting point to finding the right cultural fit for your company: clearly defining your company culture. It’s as simple, and as complex, as that.

Who are you as a company? Define your core values and missions and work to make these as transparent as possible. Use every aspect of your office environment and personnel training to reflect that culture, and then leverage your social media accounts and web presence to broadcast it to candidates. You can’t afford to be wishy-washy.

Hiring Managers Should Live Your Culture

The most crucial aspect of new cultural recruitment strategies is your hiring managers. They are missionaries for your culture, and they need to embody it. Everything down to the wording on the job description should indicate who you are as an organization.

They must to be trained in what to look for in a candidate. For this, take your company’s core values and relate them into actions you want all employees to follow. These actions will be indicators of an employee’s cultural fit.

Cubiks found that 78% of companies said job fit is easier to develop than cultural fit. Employees don’t need to check all the skill boxes. For that, there’s always training.

Cultural Fit Isn’t Found on a Resume

There isn’t a one-size-fits-all approach to building a recruiting strategy that finds employees that will fit. But a resume will never give you the full picture.

Once the potential candidate is sitting in front of a company representative, there are two crucial areas of questioning: behavior-based and personal. Both can be evaluated by a trained interviewer or a standard company questionnaire.

Behavior-based questions inform recruiters about an employee’s cultural alignment with their company:

  • What would be your ideal day at work?
  • What are common obstacles to achieving your work goals?
  • What would be a deal breaker for you at a new company?

Many companies complement these behavior-based questions with personal questions to get a look into who they are as a person and if they’ll fit in the company:

  • What book could you read over and over?
  • What websites do you browse for fun?
  • What’s the last movie you saw in the theater?

Cultural fit isn’t an easy thing to measure, but with clearly defined recruitment strategies, you’re already way ahead of the game.

 

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This post was written by Dora Wang

Dora is an employee engagement researcher for TINYpulse and managing editor of TINYinstitute. Having grown up in Texas, she is now firmly settled in Seattle, where she spends her free time reading comic books, wrangling her three cats, and (of course) rooting for the Seahawks.

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