Sunday, March 3, 2024

Showcase Your Values: Leveraging Company Culture as a Recruiting Tool

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What’s the number one thing today’s top talent looks for when job hunting? You might think it’s salary or perks, but get this – almost half of employees and leaders (a whopping 45%) say a great culture is the most important factor in considering a new job. That’s huge. 

As the war for talent rages on, company culture is emerging as a key competitive advantage in recruitment. But what exactly does “culture” mean, and how can you showcase your values to attract candidates? 

With remote work exploding and young professionals especially craving meaning and connection, culture matters now more than ever. The companies putting their values front and center will score major wins in this hiring market. In this article, we will show you how to highlight your cultural differentiators to both standout and reel in the top talent in your sector. 

What Does Company Culture Actually Mean?

Company culture seems like one of those buzzwords that everyone talks about but few can actually define. Let’s break it down…

At its core, company culture is the shared values, attitudes, standards, and beliefs that characterize your organization and its employees. It’s “the way we do things around here.” Culture comes through in both tangible and intangible ways. Tangibly, you can see it in things like your office layout, perks like free meals, the way people dress, your mottoes and mission statements, etc. 

But it’s also reflected in less obvious intangibles like work styles, attitudes, the unwritten rules on how to get ahead, your norms for communication and collaboration, the personalities that thrive at your company, and your shared vision for success. A great culture feels meaningful to employees and inspires them to show up as the best versions of themselves. A poor company culture could make it very difficult for you to acquire and retain talent, plus a whole host of other unwanted consequences 

Why Company Culture is a Recruiting Magnet

So now we know a strong culture when we see it. But is it really that big of a deal for attracting candidates? The short answer is – yes, absolutely.

As mentioned earlier, almost half of job seekers say a positive culture is more important than salary when deciding where to work. From this, you could deduce that nearly the same amount would turn down a job that didn’t align with their values, even for more pay.

Instead, today’s candidates want to feel fulfilled and inspired by their work, not just earn a paycheck. So, what is the aim of compensation? Well, salary is certainly still important, but it’s no longer the be-all and end-all. Candidates want a workplace where they can thrive and belong.

Culture also gives candidates a peek into the actual employee experience. A fun, engaging culture signals that people enjoy and are fulfilled by their work. A cutthroat, high-pressure culture hints at burnout. Plus, when your culture aligns with a candidate’s values, they instantly feel a sense of belonging. They can envision thriving and being their best selves in an environment that clicks with them values-wise.

So if you want to grab attention and connect with in-demand talent, you’ve got to showcase the inner soul of your company – your culture.

How to Showcase Your Culture Loud and Proud

Alright, you’re convinced culture is critical for hiring. But how exactly can you broadcast your values to job seekers? Here are my top tips for putting your culture center stage:

Feature it Prominently on Your Careers Site

Dedicate an entire section of your careers site to culture, with vibrant photos, authentic videos, quotes directly from employees, explanations of your unique perks and benefits, and more. Infuse mentions of your cultural values throughout other pages as well.

Call Out Your Culture in Every Job Posting

Write a section in each job listing that highlights cultural initiatives, activities, and values that candidates can expect and look forward to. For example, “We value innovation through quarterly hackathons, friendship through annual offsites in Napa, and giving back through weekly volunteering events.”

Get Employees to Share Inside Perspectives

Have team members describe what they genuinely love about your culture through blog posts, testimonials, videos, and other platforms. Their authentic perspectives are gold for giving candidates a real feel for your vibe.

Share Slices of Cultural Life on Social Media

Post photos of team outings, events, office dogs, and videos that give followers a fun, engaging peek into what it’s like to be part of your crew. Just make sure to get employee consent first!

Keep Your Culture Consistent Across Platforms

Make sure your cultural vibe shines consistently across your careers site, job listings, social media, and any other channels candidates may encounter. Alignment is key for showcasing an authentic brand.

Invite Candidates to Experience the Culture

During the interview process, offer inside looks like office tours, meetings with potential coworkers, and sitting in on team meetings. Let them get a taste of your culture firsthand.

Train Hiring Managers to Spotlight Culture

Educate recruiters and hiring managers on your differentiators so they can knowledgeably convey what makes your culture special during candidate conversations. The goal is giving candidates a robust preview, so they’re excited to join your team. Just keep it real – no inflated hype!

Final Word

A vibrant, authentic culture is your competitive advantage in today’s hiring landscape. Many candidates want to feel inspired and excited about where they work – not just earn a paycheck.

By spotlighting your cultural values and initiatives at every opportunity, you attract talent that will thrive in your environment. Just remember to be honest! With some thoughtful effort, you can showcase the soul of your organization in a way that resonates with your ideal hires. Lastly, don’t forget to put your people first and inject your brand with purpose. When you attract talent who believe in your mission, it pays dividends for your business and community.

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