6 Ways to Evaluate Company Culture


Don't wait for the interview to learn about a company.

You probably wouldn't think about purchasing an expensive item without looking at the product reviews or asking your friends for their opinions first.

The same is true for evaluating your next employer. In fact, according to a new study by job search site Indeed, 95 percent of respondents say that if they were considering a new job opportunity, insight into the company's employer reputation would be somewhat or extremely important.

Company reviews also determine whether a candidate accepts an offer. Forty-five percent of respondents report that online company reviews by current and past employees were one of the most important factors for making this decision.

What's important to know about a company? Indeed's study finds that these are the five most important criteria to job seekers when researching a company: stability of the company; insight on benefits and perks, flexibility and salary ranges; growth opportunities; company management and the company's mission and vision.

Where can you research a company? Luckily, companies are beginning to understand how important it is to provide candidates with information prior to the interview. You want to use all the information available to research a company.

1. Start with the company website. If the company has one, you'll find the mission and vision information here. The company website should also have information about the organization's leaders. It may also have information about what it's like to work there and basic information about benefits and perks. When looking at the company's career pages, you can see how many jobs are available, which may be an indication of growth and opportunities for advancement.

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2. Next, visit the company page on LinkedIn. Some companies have begun adding their own content about careers and life at the company. You can see three sections: "about," "careers" and "life." Review these sections to learn more about the company and what message they want you to know about their corporate culture.

3. To see what past and present employees are saying about the company, visit Glassdoor. Here you can search anonymous reviews, learn what candidates have said about the interview process, the company benefits and even see photos.

4. Don't forget to search for the company on Facebook. The company may have a special page dedicated to careers. There may even be reviews of the company if that feature is turned on. Take note of discussions taking place in this community and any events the company is promoting. While you're on Facebook, search for "people who work at [name of company]." You may be surprised to see someone you know who works there.

5. Other social media sites might also provide a glimpse of what the company is sharing and what people are saying about the company. Search for the company's profile. On Twitter, search for any mention of the company name by searching in the main search bar and in "advanced search" mode.

6. Last but not least, talk to everyone you know. Getting insights from people you know allows you to ask questions that are important to you. And people you know are more likely to be candid and open with the information they share with you.

But what if you can't find online information about a company? Seventy percent of job seekers report that a company without any online information would cause them to distrust the company. This lack of trust often results in potential candidates deciding not to apply to the company. You may be skeptical about the legitimacy of the company. You should still ask your network and see what you can uncover. If you do decide to apply, be smart about providing your personal information online.

Take the interview. You shouldn't necessarily turn down an interview based on a poor review or lack of a review. You need to learn about the company firsthand. So take the interview; you really have nothing to lose, except for an hour of your time. And, the extra practice interviewing is a bonus! You can use some of these questions to ask during your interview and get a better idea of the company and its culture.

  • What do you like most about working here?
  • How would your team describe you as a manager and leader?
  • What types of activities outside the workplace does your company support?
  • What is the typical career path like for someone in this role?
  • May I ask why the last person left the job?
  • Could I meet some of the people I'd be working with?
  • How will my performance in this role be evaluated? How often?
  • What kind of hours are expected for me to perform the role at maximum capacity?

Almost a third of new employees leave a new job within the first 90 days because of four things: the role wasn't what they expected, there was an incident or bad experience, they didn't like the company culture or they simply changed their minds, according to Jobvite's Job Seeker Nation Study. You don't want to find yourself looking for a new job too soon. Take the time to thoroughly evaluate a company before accepting the offer.


By Hannah Morgan

Source: money.usnews.com