Candidate screening sets the foundations for an engaged workforce, yet most organisations don’t screen for culture.
Everyone knows culture is all-important, but our recruitment processes don’t reflect that. In fact, the typical organisation’s recruitment would make you think that culture is an afterthought – a tiebreaker that’s used to distinguish between the final top candidates rather than informing who should be a top candidate. How did we get here, and what should we do to turn it around?
A history of bad practice
With the ever-increasing pace of change, for many organisations your only true competitive business advantage lies with your organisation’s culture and the human element that drives it. This thinking is not radical, research from Deloitte shows that 94 per cent of executives and 88per cent of employees say a “distinct workplace culture is important to business success”.
But as much as leaders see the benefits of a great company culture, this doesn’t extend to incorporating cultural fit at the very beginning of the hiring process. We’re stuck in the past where shortlisting initial candidates is based first and foremost on the data in their resumes.
On one view, this is understandable. Gartner research shows managers are time poor and the median time to fill a position has increased to 72 days in 2018 from 61 days in 2015, so there’s a lot of pressure put on screening and shortlisting.
This has driven the significant innovation and proliferation of recruitment technology in the last twenty years. Most of these tools essentially filter candidates via keywords, check boxes and knock-out questions. However, many of these solutions are only systems of record or data storage solutions. They are not designed to be intelligent decision optimisation platforms.
With HR in the habit of shortlisting based on resumes, the initial cull of applicants is too simplistic. With no understanding of the candidates work behaviours and preferences, or their alignment on the company’s purpose and values. If you have bad data in, there will be bad data out. Improving the quality of the hiring processes that follow after the initial screening is not enough. Because you may already have lost the best candidates.
Combine flawed screening with the risky belief that you can match candidates to your unique company culture at the end of the hiring process and you have a real problem. Shortlyster CEO Rudy Crous points out, “You can train someone to have the right technical skills, or you can send them on a course to get the right qualifications, but it’s an uphill battle to change a person’s attitudes, values, and job motivation to be the right fit for your company and its culture.”
Flipping the script
So, what’s the solution? How do you make culture something you measure at the beginning of the recruitment process and not the end? It might seem difficult. But there are answers. Andrew Banks, Shark Tank mentor and talent and learning expert, says, “In my experience, people are getting hired because of their skills or knowledge, and are failing because they are a bad match on their culture and attributes – that’s where technology can play a role in helping to improve fit in a meaningful and objective way.”
How can technology help? It can do more than just assess a resume. It can actively test for psychological and behavioural traits, individual work preferences, and whether someone’s purpose and values align with the organisation. Some think that this sort of thing is best left to the interview, but this isn’t possible at scale – you can’t do initial screening with interviews.
And technology has advantages beyond the ability to digest a significant amount of data and process it fast. Programmed correctly, a computer has none of the biases of people. With the key selection criteria defined and weighted for importance to role success, technology can objectively compare and contrast candidates to provide an evaluation of fit based on both technical and non-technical requirements.
This is how Shortlyster works. It takes a critical look at everything a person brings to the table when applying for the role. Qualifications, experience, skills, as well as all the traits and work behaviours that are the right cultural fit for the team. It manages this through a user-friendly profile template. Candidates complete their profile which is then matched to your organisation’s unique selection criteria, which includes cultural fit, as well as the technical requirements of the role.
In real-time, you’ll see your candidate pool emerge and immediately understand which job seekers might make the best fit. Shortlyster’s core objective is to help you achieve a highly engaged workforce, which can give companies a three year revenue growth 2.3 times greater than the average, according to research from Deloitte.
Supercharge your recruitment process. Get it right from the beginning. Holistically screen, match and rank the right candidates in real-time for an optimal shortlist and build an engaged long-term workforce.