Go Online For Clues To The Right Corporate Culture Fit

Drink after work happy colleagues having fun
When you apply for a job online, do you ever think, "Wait a minute ... what do I really know about this company, let alone its culture or employees?" I mean, this is your livelihood and you will probably spend more time at work than at home. What's it really like to work there? Is this the corporate culture you want?

Many companies are starting to wake up to this disconnect and instead of posting the ho-hum job description and then a link to "About Us," they are on a mission to change the conversation. Through extensive content and videos, they want you to come to their site, hang out and, hopefully, get a better sense of who they are and if they could be the right fit for you.

If you want to check out a great example of when this works, look no further than TripAdvisor.com. While the job search functionality is incredibly user-friendly, the best feature is "See what it's like to work in our offices across the world." Informative, authentic, with an ample dose of humor, these videos give you a great sense of TripAdvisor's DNA: hard work, excellent technology, community, and fun. A particular favorite is the Newton, Massachusetts headquarters video with host "Sanjay."

Procter & Gamble also raises the bar with videos featuring employees from around the world having fun on the job and outside of work (horseback riding, martial arts, volunteering, etc.). Embedded links in each video invite the seeker to Read About My Job. Another feature, P&G Employee Profiles, also shares employees' experiences and specific job details.

P&G's Career Areas link gives potential candidates the option to pick from Business, Non-Management, and Technology. Seekers can then see lists of job areas: Brand Management, Administrative, and so on. I clicked on Research and Development and was presented with specific job descriptions, information on advancement opportunities (loved this), and education requirements.

Marriott is also hoping to engage candidates on a deeper level with the launch of #PictureYourselfHere, a company-wide initiative that invites current employees to upload photos of themselves, their team and their location.

"We wanted to elevate the bar because job searches can be intimidating and difficult. Today's job seeker does not want a sterile, cube-like experience – that's not compelling," says Lance Bloomberg, vice president of employer brand and communications for Marriott International. "We wanted to show the dynamism of the work environment, the locations, and the people."

While just in the beginning phases of adding and updating content, Marriott excels in showing the full breadth and description of job opportunities from housekeeping aides to marketing VPs, in locations worldwide.

More companies are seeing the payoff in "pulling back the curtain," and letting job seekers take a good, long and, hopefully, entertaining look at who they are. And if you're a job seeker, take the time to think, "Can I see myself working here?"

Remember, the term "right fit" works both ways.
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