Honest, transparent corporate culture tops list for job seekers

Ian Cameron Oct 7, 2014 7:00:00 AM

The type of culture people say they want in their current company and what would grab their attention in a job ad are actually two different things.CorporateCulture

Software Advice, an online resource for talent management technology, conducted a survey that asked adults to describe their ideal corporate culture, the top response was Casual/Relaxed (9%) and the top five were:

  •          Casual/Relaxed
  •          Family-oriented
  •          Fun
  •          Friendly
  •          Honest/Transparent

When those same respondents were asked to choose which of those top five responses, when appearing in a job ad, would most likely entice them to apply for a job, Honest/Transparent rose to the top.

Here’s that list from a chart on their website:


There are a number of potential reasons for the changing order that weren’t explored in the survey. It could be that people already have honesty and transparency at their current workplace and, when describing their ideal culture, count that as table stakes. If that’s the case, those table stakes are not taken for granted when looking for a new job.

Another possible explanation is that respondents are not looking for their “dream culture” when applying for a job, but are more concerned with ensuring they’ll be able to trust their new employer.

In our own Global Talent Recruitment Survey, 51% of HR professionals said it’s hard to find candidates that fit their culture.

This could be because companies are not accurately, or not at all, defining their culture for candidates during the recruiting process. One way to help with this is to create 3-Dimensional job descriptions.

In addition to the skills required, a 3-D job description considers:

  •          the behavioral or personality attributes required for success in the role;
  •          who they will interact with;
  •          the manager’s style; and
  •          the corporate culture.

Understanding these traits will help you paint a picture of the ideal candidate as a whole person.

How about you? How would you define your ideal culture?

Image courtesy of  jesadaphorn at

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Topics: Employee Engagement, Recruitment

Ian Cameron

Written by Ian Cameron

Ian Cameron is the former Managing Director of The McQuaig Institute®. Throughout his career Ian’s focus has been on helping organizations realize their goals through their people and helping people live their passion through their work.