How to Create Company Culture That Attracts the Best People

By Caroline Roberson on February 21, 2024

If you are struggling to attract great talent, chances are perceptions about your company culture may be working against you.

A 2018 report from Deloitte found that more than half of millennials and Gen Z candidates say workplace culture is “very important” when they are choosing where to work. Candidates today also have a lot more access to information about a potential employer’s company and culture. A study from CareerArc found that 91 percent of candidates review at least one resource to evaluate an employer’s brand before deciding whether to apply for a job.

These resources often include review sites like Glassdoor, where employees anonymously review their company and managers and share anecdotes about what it’s like to work there. The study found that less than 35 percent of candidates would apply to a company with a one or two- star rating – which is often the result of poor corporate culture. Even when companies do hire highly-sought after employees, younger workers are adept job-hoppers, willing to jump ship if a better more appealing company comes along.

This is all good news for companies that are well-known for their company culture and being a great place to work. It’s not such good news if your organization hasn’t built a corporate culture that makes people love to come to work. If your culture is known for lousy managers, overworked staff, or a poor hiring and training process, you may be losing candidates without even knowing it.

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So how do you know if your culture is drawing in the best people, and how do you foster a culture that continues to attract people?

5 tips for creating a great company culture.

  1. Let reviews guide you. If you aren’t sure how your culture is perceived, check out your Glassdoor reviews. They will tell you precisely what current and past employees think, what your organization does well and where you can improve. Identify the trends in the sentiment and use the data to make changes, and to start conversations with employees about how you can do better.
  2. Create a transparent hiring process. According to the CareerArc study, 72 percent of candidates who have had a poor application experience shared that experience online or with someone directly. With all candidates, it’s important to be transparent, let them know where they are in the recruiting process, and that you are appreciative of their time. To avoid bad reviews from candidates you don’t hire, consider sharing results from employment assessments that illustrate the job matches and mismatches. When candidates aren’t selected for a job, it helps them to understand why. Think of your recruiting process as a chance to build brand loyalty with every single candidate who applies, regardless of whether you hire them.
  3. Listen to your employees. The best way to create an engaged and happy culture is to talk to your people, pay attention to their feedback, and follow through on your promises. When employees see their concerns being addressed, it makes them feel valued, which is vital to a healthy corporate culture.
  4. Align your vision with actual actions. Candidates today want to work for employers whose mission and values align with their own. But if what you claim to care about isn’t reflected in the culture, the disconnect can be frustrating. Whether you claim to be collaborative and inclusive, promise to invest in your people, or say you intend to make a difference in the world, you have to prove it with actual activities that tie the culture directly to your vision. These efforts are how you create an authentic culture that resonates with employees.
  5. Invest in your people. Gallup data shows 59% of millennials say opportunities to learn and grow are “extremely important” to them when applying for a job, and one of the top three factors in whether they stay on the job. Take advantage of this trend by providing training from day one, and offering employees ample opportunities to expand their skills on the job through training, mentoring, and stretch assignments.

In the current hiring environment, companies need to do everything they can to attract highly skilled workers. Creating a culture that candidates are drawn to can be a powerful tool in winning the war for talent.

If you are struggling to define your company culture, Berke can help. By assessing current employees, we identify the trends in your current workforce and help make sense of the results. Then you can make decisions about whether the make-up of your current employees reflects your corporate values. Learn more about our benchmark studies.

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