The ideal candidate for your organisation isn’t just someone who will excel in their position; you want someone who will provide a long-term solution for your organisation. That is why it is crucial that you not only assess your candidates’ practical skills and abilities, but also other important qualities such as values, personality and work preferences. Values congruence has demonstrated links to employee outcomes such as organisational commitment, job satisfaction, tenure and job performance.

However, successfully recruiting candidates that possess the behavioural characteristics that make them the right fit for your business can be a complex process. Here are 3 steps to help assess the cultural fit of your candidates and new employees:

1. An objective measure of organisational culture

Assessing your candidates work-related values can save your organisation time and money. There are a variety of established methods to help objectively quantify organisational culture and determine levels of fit between an organisation and individual. One such method with strong empirical support1 is a values system, which determines the level of congruence between the values of an organisation and a job candidate.

The Revelian Values Inventory is designed to compare the candidate’s work-related values with the organisation’s values. The first step is to complete an audit of your organisation’s values. Next, the candidate completes the assessment by ranking a set of 20 values in order of most important to least important.

The assessment then calculates the degree of match between each candidate’s values and your organisation’s values. Candidates with higher levels of match or congruence are more likely to be committed to your organisation.

The employees of a Federal Government Agency who scored ‘Above Average’ on the Revelian Values Inventory receive 17% higher performance ratings, were employed 31% longer and were 5 times more likely to be promoted.

2. Look at the supervisor-employee relationship

Once you have selected the successful candidate, your supervisors can act as an initial filter of the new employee’s experience with an organisation. This influence arises from regular interaction with supervisors and their knowledge as the new recruit learns the ropes and general processes of an organisation.

However, the real trick to measuring cultural fit is to avoid relying solely on the judgement of a supervisor. A supervisor’s judgement is subjective and may be influenced by superficial characteristics that might not matter in the long term.

3. Employee-team fit is difficult to predict

Just because a person can do the job, doesn’t necessarily mean the rest of the team will get along with them and eventually this can have a negative impact on the entire team.

Even without all the empirical support, the effect of employing staff who are well suited to the company culture and the rest of the team quickly becomes evident when interacting with them. They appear genuinely passionate about what they do, are often well equipped to respond to customer queries and speak positively about their employer.

The effects of the opposite, employing staff not well suited or supported by the company culture, can be even more readily apparent. A lack of passion and interest, an inability to help and a general, negative attitude can have long-lasting impacts on clients and colleagues alike.

The general consensus is that without the use of objective and valid assessments, the task of accurately identifying the right person becomes much more difficult. Knowing whether a person can perform in a role is difficult enough, let alone gauging whether they will fit in with the organisational culture and work well within the existing team, so why not get in touch, we’d love to help you.



1Finegan, J.E. (2000). The impact of person and organizational values on organizational commitment. Journal of Occupational and Organizational Psychology, 73, 149-169.
Goodman, S. A. & Svyantek, D. J. (1999). Person-organization fit and contextual performance: Do shared values matter? Journal of Vocational Behavior, 254-275.
Kalliath, T.J., Bluedorn, A.C., & Strube, M.J. (1999). A test of value congruence effects. Journal of Organizational Behavior, 20, 1175-1198.
Kristof-Brown, A. L., Zimmerman, R. D. & Johnson, E. C. (2005). Consequences of individual’s fit at work: A meta analysis of person-job, person-organisation, person-group, and person-supervisor fit. Personnel Psychology, 58, 281-342.
Verquer, M.L., Beehr, T.A., & Wagner, S.H. (2003). A meta-analysis of relations between person-organisation fit and work attitudes. Journal of Vocational Behavior, 63, 473-489.