There’s no question that a company’s culture and ethos can help its employees feel more satisfied at work, increase employee retention and ultimately serve as a catalyst for its success. Company culture is seen as very important by professionals: survey data collected by Glassdoor shows that more than three quarters of professionals take the culture into account before applying for a job, and 56% say that they see the culture of a company as playing a more significant role than salary in determining overall job satisfaction. Given the role that it plays, cultural fit should be a key priority for employers.
Why is cultural fit important?
If somebody is a good cultural fit for a company, they are far more likely to be an engaged, motivated employee who derives satisfaction from their role. There is a greater chance that they will see the job as more than just a source of income and as such, they will be more likely to go above and beyond in the workplace and may even inspire others to follow in their footsteps.
Hiring for cultural fit therefore makes good business sense. 10-25% of new employees decide to leave within six months of starting work, and one reason that professionals give for quitting is that they feel that they are a poor fit for the company culture. Choosing people for the job who are a natural fit for the company’s values and working practices is a great way to avoid these problems from arising.
How to hire for cultural fit?
Given the importance of company culture, businesses are increasingly hiring for cultural fit. This involves defining what your culture is all about and incorporating questions at interview stage that relate to your interviewees’ values, motivations and aspirations.
Define your company’s culture
The first step is to describe your company’s culture in writing. What are the values, beliefs and ethics that characterize your company’s operations and working environment?
If you are struggling to capture the essence of your culture, it might be worth asking current employees about how they feel about the company and its working practices. It is recommended that you use such feedback when writing or updating a mission statement and articulating your company values. Include these on your website and on all your digital platforms, in addition to testimonials from your current employees.
Demonstrate your values throughout the interview process
Asking values-based interview questions is one of the best ways to identify candidates who share your values and will be a good fit in the workplace.
You should also draw attention to the benefits that you offer your employees. 56% of CFOs in the Asia-Pacific (APAC) have said that they are considering expanding benefits, including flexible working arrangements (FWAs), in a bid to retain their top talent. If you offer flexible working roles, ensure that your staff relay this information at interview stage.
Cover the right questions
If you’re wondering how to determine if a candidate is a good fit, asking the following questions will help shed light on the personality of your interviewees and their alignment with your values:
What motivates you?
How do you handle conflict in the workplace?
What work environment supports innovation and productivity levels?
Give me an example of something that you have taught yourself in the last six months
What experiences have shaped your outlook on life?
What are you most proud of?
Utilize personality tests
Personality tests provide valuable insights into how prospective employees approach problems. They can also shed light on their ability to work alongside others and offer further information about their interests and preferences.
Some of the most common personality tests used by employers include the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator, the Caliper Profile and the 16 Personality Factor Questionnaire.
Other key considerations
Whilst cultural fit is of great importance, it should be weighed alongside other factors. Hiring solely for cultural fit can perpetuate bias and lead to a lack of diversity within the workplace as a result. It’s also important to take into consideration an applicant’s qualifications, work experience, career aspirations and skill set when assessing their suitability for a role in your organization.
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