Testing Culture Fit During the Hiring Process

Company culture assessment

Assessing cultural fit as part of your personality testing allows you to measure the potential of a candidate to thrive in your company. Your corporate culture is key to your success, reflecting your values, mission, and management style. You don't want to upset the delicate balance of your team when you grow and add new employees. Hiring candidates who are a good cultural fit will increase the likelihood of their success and help ensure your existing employees remain engaged and productive.

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Why to assess candidates for cultural fit

What does culture fit mean? Don't make the mistake of thinking it means hiring the same kinds of people as you. You need to be careful not to be biased and discriminatory. When you assess candidates for cultural fit, it maps your company culture to specific skills, abilities and values. You'll want to comply with guidelines that ensure the legality of the personality testing you conduct.

Carefully chosen culture fit interview questions and personality testing will help you identify people who will work well on your team and enhance productivity. When you make good culture fit choices, you can improve employee retention and weed out candidates with toxic behaviors that can damage your business. Hiring an employee who isn't a good cultural fit can lead to problems like:

  • Team conflicts
  • Disruptive behavior
  • Work performance issues
  • Damaged customer relations
  • Loss of existing valued employees
  • Legal problems
Why to assess candidates for cultural fit.

Understanding culture fit vs. culture add

Culture fit, though desirable, can create problems if it furthers affinity bias, discrimination that leads to hiring people like ourselves. That can cause legal troubles, but also hurts your organization. You'll be vulnerable to groupthink, potentially miss opportunities and fail to see risks.

That is why a newer idea of “culture add” is gaining attention, bringing objectivity into the mix. The difference between culture fit vs. culture add is that instead of hiring bias, you increase diversity in your workplace. While still providing the benefits of culture fit, it promotes inclusiveness and diversity. Taking a culture add approach is a good way to guard against groupthink.

Either way, it's important to assess a job candidate's cultural impact on the company.

Which characteristics can you test for?

Which characteristics can you test for?

Culture fit interview questions and culture add interview questions can cover similar ground. You can use them to discover if a candidate is:

  • Team-oriented

  • Reliable and honest

  • Willing to take direction

  • Receptive to feedback

  • Adaptive to change

  • Good communicator

  • Open-minded

  • Hard-working

You can also test for decision-making and conflict resolution approaches and work styles.

A workplace personality test can help you evaluate a candidate from strengths and weaknesses to work ethic and values. You'll be able to identify character traits that are important to your workplace to better understand culture fit vs. culture add.

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How do you test for a culture fit or add?

Testing candidates for culture fit or add involves taking a good look at your company culture and formally defining it. What are your belief systems, work and communication styles, daily routines and expectations? How formal is your organization? How do people work together and solve problems? You may wish to survey employees to get a comprehensive view.

From there, you can create a candidate profile for open roles and use a personality assessment to evaluate candidates for their fit with that profile. Working with Hire Success®, you can create an ideal candidate profile, design culture fit and culture add interview questions, and obtain the insights you need to make the right hiring decisions.

Can you determine cultural fit through job interviews?

Evaluating a job candidate objectively for culture fit during an interview can be difficult if you don't have a methodical process and good training. Using personality testing adds a needed methodical process that can limit the bias your staff may form during the interview process.

Getting beyond first impressions by using a personality test can uncover potential culture fit and culture add traits in each candidate. Early personality testing can also help you quickly focus on the candidates most likely to fit into your organization and bring added value.

Cultural fit interview questions for hiring managers

Another benefit of using the Hire Success® Personality Test early is that you'll get insights into recommended follow up questions you can use in interviews. If you want to develop a deeper understanding of a candidate's problem-solving approaches, you might ask the following questions:

  • Tell me about an instance when you helped a co-worker solve a problem.
  • Describe how you handled having to do something you didn't agree with.
  • How have you handled getting negative feedback from a supervisor or other team member?
  • What challenges have you experienced that taught you the most?
Cultural fit interview questions.
How much weight should you give to a culture fit assessment?

How much weight should you give to culture fitting?

Now that you understand what culture fit means, here comes the next question: how important is culture fit in hiring? You can look at resumes to learn about a candidate's education, past roles and responsibilities, skills, training, and writing ability, but you need to know a great deal more than that to make a successful hire.

Equal weight should be given to culture fit or add. Ultimately it's what will make or break a candidate. They can be brilliant and accomplished, but if they don't work well in your organization, they will soon be out and you'll be starting the hiring process all over again.

Hire people that
complement and enrich your team

You need to go beyond resumes and standard interviews to find employees who will thrive on your team. The Hire Success® Pre-Employment Personality Test will help you better understand whether candidates can fit within or add to your company culture. You'll spot potential problems early, know the right questions to ask, and make faster, more confident hiring decisions when it matters the most.

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