Finding the Right Fit for Your Workplace Culture

workplace environment

These days, every hiring manager knows it’s important to find job candidates who fit in with your workplace culture. When you hire someone who meshes well with your corporate environment, they’re more likely to settle into their job with ease, which means they’re able to start contributing to the organization quickly. In addition, they tend to stick with the firm longer.

But what’s the best way to find that right match with your company's workplace culture? In an Accountemps survey, CFOs and asked how they get insight into a potential hire’s fit with the firm. Here are their top four responses, in reverse order:

4. Having the candidate attend a group lunch or social activity

Of the CFOs surveyed, 7 percent gave this answer. When you watch a job candidate interact with potential coworkers in a more relaxed setting, you can get a sense of how well his or her personality will fit with your staff. Just make sure that you observe the person’s work style, as well. It’s often just as important as personality when it comes to workplace fit.

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3. Checking references to ask about workplace culture

Twenty-seven percent of CFOs cited checking references as the best way to find out more about how a candidate might fit in. It is important to get information about a potential new hire from that person’s former supervisor, but it can be tricky these days, as people tend to be wary of saying too much (or too little) and risking a lawsuit. Hiring managers should always take this task themselves, rather than delegating it, as they might be able to establish a rapport with their counterpart at another firm, leading to more honest and thorough answers.

2. Asking open-ended interview questions

This was a popular way to assess a candidate’s compatibility: 30 percent of respondents said open-ended interview queries provide the greatest insight. Open-ended questions, like “Tell me about a time you solved a problem in a creative way,” tend to bring more thoughtful responses from candidates and allow hiring managers a glimpse of what motivates, frustrates and inspires them.

1. Having the candidate work on a temporary basis to start

This was the No. 1 answer, cited by 34 percent of CFOs. It’s no surprise: There’s really no better way to observe how well a candidate faces challenges and interacts with others on your team. Bonus: Applicants who work on a temporary basis can likewise learn about the day-to-day workings of the office, allowing them to assess whether they’d be satisfied in the job.

Thinking about using a temp-to-hire assignment to assess candidates for a job opening at your firm? Take these 3 Steps to a Full-Time Solution With a Temp-to-Hire Strategy.


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Editor's note: This post was updated in 2016 to reflect more current information.