Workforce Management just published an article about values based recruiting that demonstrates how companies are rebranding themselves to attract the right candidates. The idea is that by weeding out people who don’t mesh with the company’s values before they even get to the point of a job offer can increase retention and shorten time to productivity.

Sound familiar? That’s because we talk a lot at Emerald Software about how acculturation onboarding serves a similar purpose. Of course, with onboarding you’re taking new employees as they are and gently molding them to fit with your corporate culture. The idea of starting earlier, in the recruitment phase, is a natural expansion of this process. Think about how much faster new hires would fit in if they already embody many of the characteristics that demonstrate your company’s core values.

Constraints on Implementing This Idea

Employer face several challenges in both values based recruitment and subsequent acculturation onboarding. The most obvious one is this: A company has to know its own values to effectively communicate them to job candidates and employees. So, defining core values and determining what these look like in action is the first step.

The second step is a reality check. Too often, corporate values and mission statements sound good on paper but have little or no relation to how a business is actually run. This means a company either has to change how it is organized and operated, or it needs to reconsider its values and be honest about what’s really important. As an extreme example, it’s possible for maximum short term profits at any cost to be a core value for a business. If that’s an organization’s top priority, they might consider just being open about it. That way, they can attract the most cutthroat, bonus-motivated employees out there!

The next stage involves figuring out how to measure whether job candidates and/or new hires match the organization’s values. This could involve asking the right questions during an interview. The Workforce article gives the example of a company that places a strong value on mentoring. Recruiters ask interviewees for management positions to describe a time that they went the extra mile to help develop another employee. The measurement process could also mean collecting information in an onboarding survey to identify characteristics that should be nurtured.

In any event, acculturation onboarding is the time to communicate clearly and specifically about your company’s values. With our Allegro HR Acculturation Portal, this can include much more than a simple mission statement. You can use multimedia to fully immerse each new hire in the process of connecting with and internalizing the core values of your organization.

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