According to Deloitte, 82 percent of companies believe that culture is a competitive advantage for employers. It’s hard to argue with this, since research shows company culture drives innovation, employee behavior, and customer service. You can understand why organizations care about how their workers are treated. But, company culture is equally important to potential job applicants. Indeed argues it increases employee engagement and effective onboarding, and promotes a healthy team environment. The question becomes, how can you unearth what an employer’s really like when they’re trying to put their best foot forward? Here’s how to research company culture.
Let’s face it—we’ve all done our fair share of Internet detective work to find out something we desperately wanted to know. So, why not apply the same principle to your job search? Go on social media and see what you discover about an organization. Are you seeing a lot of photos of engaged employees? Do they highlight team building activities?
Keep in mind, other candidates are already doing this, so you’re playing catchup. The Muse suggests 59 percent of job seekers already are using social media to research companies they’re interested in. And, it can even lead to discovering new job opportunities. Almost half (49 percent) of potential candidates follow organizations on social media to get updates on possible job opportunities.
Organization Review Sites
Websites like Glassdoor and Indeed have shifted the balance of power from the employer to the potential employee. Companies can no longer afford to take advantage of their lifeblood—their workers—and not face any repercussions. So, if you want to get to the bottom of whether or not this new job opportunity is with a top organization, read their reviews.
During the Interview Itself
Granted, there are times when the comments on review sites are cases of sour grapes. The people may have been let go or have some other motive. So, why not get the information straight from the horse’s mouth? Fortunately, you can ask some pointed questions during the interview that reveal company culture. Here are several examples:
- “How long have you been with the company?” This question uncovers a lot of critical information. If the person who’s interviewing you has only been with the company for a few weeks, that can indicate there’s a lot of turnover.
- “How does your company come up with innovative ideas?” Again, this can be a potential red flag, depending on the answer. If the response the interviewer provides is something along the lines of, “Our CEO is constantly driving our efforts,” this reveals an organization that doesn’t value employee input.
- “What activities do you offer your employees?” Quite simply, you can learn a lot about the appreciation you may or may not receive at an organization based on this response. If a company doesn’t offer any, but instead argues the higher salary they offer is the benefit, this is a bad sign. Usually, this response is indicative of leadership that will overwork and under-appreciate you.
News about the Company
Finally, one of the best ways how to research company culture is to scour the news. Go online and research, research, research. What type of stories show up about the organization? Do you get a lot of press releases highlighting how the company gives back to the community? Or, are you reading angry reviews from customers and clients? Social media allows an organization to control the narrative more, but news articles and online reviews are an unfiltered look.
Remember, if you’re looking for a new job, you should reach out to Applied Resource Group. As Atlanta’s top staffing firm, we can connect with you now and start conversations that can lead to a lot of places that you wouldn’t have even known about. So, keep in mind how to research company culture for any career opportunities that arise.