Hire for cultural fit, train for the right IT skills

Sharon Florentine

One Degree does use search, networking and messaging functionality like that found in traditional job search sites like LinkedIn, Storin says, but it also incorporates algorithms to identify cultural traits and alignment with specific industries, companies and roles, Storin says. The model was similar to algorithms like those used in music discovery and playback software Pandora.

"We looked at companies doing things very well in other capacities; Pandora, for instance, is using all these metrics and algorithms to match users with music they might like based on things like syncopation and beats-per-minute. We felt like this was the key to the future of employment search and answered the question of how to integrate culture into the equation," Storin says.

Storin says the information gathered by One Degree's questions is also beneficial for hiring companies, and that while candidates can fill out the site's questionnaires in under five minutes, most users spend around four to five times that amount of time on the site — a conversion rate of 40 percent.

"It's a coup for these huge companies to know these things about their potential hires," Storin says. "And we already see a much greater level of engagement and interest from candidates because we are based on culture," he says.

"Recruiters should be addressing cultural fit already, and some of them are, but as far as it being a general practice, they just don't have the time or the bandwidth," Storin says. "So many are reduced to just scanning resumes, looking for keywords and plugging holes, and then companies wind up with bad hires, unhappy employees and disengaged workers, and that equals attrition," he says.

"If employees are engaged and feel like they are part of a larger entity that mirrors their beliefs and values, they are more likely to stay when presented with a challenge," Storin says.

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