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How much is

Better Cultural Fit means Better Hiring

If you’ve ever had to hire for your team or business, or indeed work as a recruiter, you’ll know that your chances of on-boarding the right candidate are about 50/50. Statistics show that just under 50% of new hires fail in the first 18 months. And for the most part hiring failures are the result of a poor cultural fit. A staggering 89% of new hires falter for this very reason, according to insight from a recent Forbes article.

This inevitably leads to massive frustration for the hiring manager and the team. Often the new hire has been extensively trained. Time and energy has gone into bringing them up to speed. The lack of cultural fit may even have led to wider disruption, resulting in poorer performance across the team. And of course, you’re back to square one from a hiring perspective. Replacing the candidate you had such high hopes for, will result in more time and money spent on recruitment.

Managers acknowledge the importance of culture in building a successful business – in a recent PWC survey 84% cited culture as critical to success. But despite its importance, only rarely is the hiring process tailored to ensure that the right cultural fit is achieved. So why is there so little focus on this aspect when hiring?

Unless the business is one of the few with optimum recruitment processes, managers tend to be poorly equipped to hire successfully. They’re offered a pile of CVs, presenting candidates with the right skills (on paper at least). Often the hiring need is urgent and with time limited only the top 2 or 3 candidates will be brought in for interview. For the most part, these interviews are scantily prepared and focus on the elements that are already known: the skills presented in the candidate’s CV. The interviewer may probe a little further and will be able to make a pretty swift decision on whether they like the candidate on a personal level, but beyond that, the candidate is unlikely to be under any deep scrutiny.

It is notoriously difficult to get a real understanding of somebody’s character in an interview situation. Even the best judge of character can get this wrong. Keep in mind that, much like on a first date, the candidate will be on their very best behaviour. Even if the interview focuses more on personality than competencies, a candidate may know how to mislead the interviewer and show only their best traits.

A lack of documented company culture can also present a challenge. Few companies and teams take the time to nail what their culture means to them, never truly establishing the common values that unite them. How then would they have a chance of hiring somebody with that same set of values and desired behaviours?

Companies that are successful at hiring know that to attract the right kind of people to their business, they need to understand how to hire for cultural fit. Here’s the steps your business could adopt to make that happen.

Step 1 - Define your Culture
Take the time to work with your team in identifying the values that matter to them. What common thread do you see? Research suggests, that the most effective teams comprise of individuals with similar motivations and behaviours. Understanding what unites your team and how your management style impacts them, will help you make better decisions around how to structure your existing workforce, as well as equip you with vital insights when preparing to on-board somebody new. You’ll have a better idea of the traits you are looking for, allowing you to define the characteristics a candidate must demonstrate.

Step 2 - Re-Shape the Interview
Focus on the person rather than the CV. Prepare questions that will help you tease out the traits that you are looking for. Be prepared to stop asking questions and letting the candidate take the lead. You’ll learn much more by letting them do the talking. It may also pay to share your values and core culture at the end of the interview. The candidate too needs to make the right decision about whether to join your organisation and they will be the best judge as to whether they can fit in.

Step 3 - Test for Cultural Fit
There are plenty of tools out there to help you test for the right cultural fit and you should certainly consider using them. Simple personality tests will help you see the core traits of an individual, allowing you to judge far better whether that fits with your team. Testing is likely to give you a much more accurate picture than an interview alone and if you test first, you’re far less likely to waste time interviewing somebody inappropriate. Most tests are set up to look for the same character trait through a variety of questions. So even if your candidate is guessing at some of the expected answers, they are unlikely to be able to sustain that through an entire test. And it’s often through the testing process, that you start to gain deeper insight of what you’re looking for or perhaps more accurately NOT looking for!

For more information on appropriate personality testing have a look at our tests
How to avoid costly hiring mistakes

How to avoid costly hiring mistakes?

Any company however big or small will make recruitment mistakes. The process in itself is unguaranteed but being aware of the pitfalls and stumbling blocks you may encounter along the way can help you avoid them. Also, should an error be made you’ll be equipped to rectify it efficiently and with the best outcome for your company.
Over the next few posts we are going to look at the 10 errors commonly made, how to avoid them and how to put them right if the hiring has already taken place. We will also look at how recruitment testing can help minimise mistakes.
So, let’s get started.

MISTAKE 1
The first mistake and crucially the one which starts the whole process, is not creating an accurate job description. To attract the candidates who have the qualities and abilities you desire for the role; your advertisement should be accurate and honest. Don’t just list the duties the role entails, describe the role in detail, its overall purpose in the company and for your clients. Define all the key areas of responsibility. Describe the attributes the successful candidate will require to fulfil the key aspects of the role. Don’t be tempted to ‘oversell’ the opportunities the role has either. Try not to imply for example that the promotion options of the role could be quicker than they are, you don’t want your eager new recruit to feel let down and leave. Tell it as it is and wait for the right candidates to apply.
Once the CV’s arrive use one or more of our recruitment tests to check what they say on paper can be backed up with actual abilities.

See what benefits our testing gives to the recruitment process and sign up for our free trail today. Get your current employees to give it a go, you may be surprised by the results.

MISTAKE 2
Let’s look at the next common recruiting mistake - missing the opportunity of recruiting within. It makes financial sense to fill a role internally. You save on the cost of advertising first off and then the time needed for looking at CV’s, interviewing etc. An existing employee will already be familiar with the company, your processes and what’s expected of them.
They are also more likely get ‘up to speed’ quicker in their new role than a new candidate would.
Less training would be required as they will already be familiar with company systems, processes and client base.

Recruiting or promoting within also boosts morale and productivity. Employees feel valued if they know they can work their way up within a company and their work is being recognised by a promotion or change of role. By recruiting in-house you also reduce the risk of losing the knowledge base you have built up in your existing employees.
So, advertise the role internally first and use our recruitment tests to see if your employee has the skills you require for the new role.

MISTAKE 3
Laszlo Bock, formerly the Senior Vice President of People Operations at Google: “Most interviews are a waste of time.” Relying too much on the interview could therefore be the third mistake you may be making when recruiting. We all form impressions of people within 10 seconds of meeting them and will subconsciously try and confirm this during the interview. The way the candidate is dressed, how they greeted us or shook our hand will all contribute to the way we perceive them. All of which has little to do with their actual ability carry out the job we are looking to employ them for. Interviews just work for the best salesperson. If the candidate can talk the talk it doesn’t mean they can walk the walk. They will have read the job description and done their research on your company and will have even prepared an answer or two. The most researched and rehearsed don’t always equate to the best candidates.

...to be continued
How much is

How much is 7% of 49?

Are you someone who is interviewing job applicants and wondering whether testing the applicants further is actually necessary... Well, perhaps this little example of the way someone’s brain works will assure you might need to test them as well?

When you are interviewing a job applicant next time, why not throw in a random question and see how they react? You could even appear a bit rude by jumping in with a question in the middle of a sentence but never mind, just ask "What is 7% of 49?". Look at how they respond. Do they freeze and say nothing for a long while? Are they trying to calculate it in their head and say something silly like 7? Did you know that the most intelligent and mature applicants will pause and think before they answer...they will think along these lines: '49 is roughly half of 100 and therefore half of 7 is 3.5'. Easy for some, not so easy for others. And although this will explain some applicants’ ability to work under pressure, it will not rule out their ability to calculate well. As we all know too well, most of us panic under certain circumstances and for a person being interviewed, this sort of questions would throw even the most confident applicants out of balance.

So what does all this prove about their intellect, brain power or logic? Or even whether they are best suited for the job? You may agree it demonstrates that our minds are not always reliable nor logical enough, especially when put under extreme pressure. Therefore we recommend making our skills tests part of your recruitment process to complement job interviews and improve the reliability and accuracy of the job applicant’s skills assessment.

How to find best staff affordably

How to find the 'best' staff affordably and in less time

Choosing the right candidate to fill a role in your company can be a difficult task. As any employer knows selecting the perfect person is about more than just a good CV and good chemistry, but often instinct plays a big role for the other important factors. Important factors such as deciding whether a candidate will complement your team and have they got the great brain power to add value to your team. Of course it is very important to get right the company culture and the team fit but can they add lateral thinking when working within your team? Let’s be honest, instinct can sometimes require some guesswork.

To reduce the reliance and risk of the guesswork – many recruiters and employers have started utilising recruitment tests to aid in the candidate interview and selection process. All this in the most effective, time-efficient, non-discriminatory and cost effective manner.

Recruitment Tests Ltd was created with the intention of providing recruiting companies with the best and most affordable candidate assessments to provide more insight and non-bias analysis of applicants before and during the selection process. These psychometric tests are designed by Occupational Psychologists, Accountants and Microsoft Certified etc. with all the accumulative experience and qualifications to give precise and clear outlines of the skill levels and intelligence in a candidate selection process, allowing you, as an employer, to save time and resources when expanding your amazing team.

The tests

There is a wide range of tests made available to employers and recruiters for every stage of the process. There are tests available for many skills and sectors, from Reasoning to Finance, testing for a range of skills and competency. Some of the tests available include:

  • Pre-selection tests
  • Numerical & Verbal Reasoning
  • Personality Profile/Psychometric
  • Competency tests/questions
  • Software / IT tests
  • Typing & Data Entry