When applying for a new job, we spend a lot of time thinking about whether we are right for a particular company, but never enough time considering if that company is right for us.
As recruiters, it’s our job to see whether a particular candidate is a good match for the business during our screening process. Factors such as personality, current situation, and experience are all considered. But that doesn’t take into account what you will feel about a potential employer. This post will give you some tips that will help you decide if you think the company would be a good match for you.
Do Some Research:
The first thing you need to do when deciding if a company is right for you is to get your hands dirty and do a little research. Start by looking at their company website, latest press releases, asking friends that work there, etc. Use as many different sources as you can to get a good picture of the company from a top level.
Look at the Corporate Culture:
One of the most useful ways to understand a company is to look at its organizational culture. Every business is unique, and each will have its own identity and personality. Company culture can be affected by size: smaller, boutique companies sometimes have more of a close family feel to them, while larger businesses can have more issues with office politics, but more opportunity for career growth. There can be fewer ‘layers’ in the company structure within smaller firms which means you may be able to work more independently and report to fewer people. If this is something that you’d like then, a smaller company may be the right way to go. Again, it all depends on your preferences. Another factor impacting company culture is the people that are already working there. Try and identify how the top-level people choose to manage their subordinates. If employees are given little responsibility and authority, this could be bad news if you like to work independently.
Consider the Industry:
Understanding the industry in which the company operates will give you some clues as to how it’s run. Corporate firms within the law, consultancy and banking sectors may have a very different culture compared to, say, a startup or a tech company. For example, you can bet that the Google offices operate very differently to Ernst & Young. Technology and advertising companies are more likely to have open-plan, informal offices, while corporate firms have the more typical formal office layout.
Look through your contact list and try to find some people who work or used to work at the company. Ask them their opinion and get a real idea of how the company operates, both the good and the bad.
At the Interview:
You have done as much research as possible, come to the conclusion that the corporation is right for you and now you have been invited for an interview. The research doesn’t stop here. Interviews are a great opportunity to check out the overall ‘vibe’ of the office. When you arrive, get there a little early and have a look around. How many people are there in the office? Is it noisy or quiet? Have people personalized their desks with pictures or are the offices spotless? These are all little signs which give away how the company is run. Try to imagine yourself in this office environment and see if you think you’d fit in. If appropriate and you have the chance, you could even talk to some of the employees and ask them a few questions. You’d be surprised at how much you can take away from being in the office for even a short time.
When deciding if a company would be right for you, it’s important to remember that there are no rights or wrongs. Everybody is different, and every company is different. Spend lots of time researching the company, imagine yourself working there and get one step closer to finding the perfect company for you.