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Remote Interview Tips: How to Assess Company Culture

As remote interviews become a normal part of the hiring process, it can be challenging to get a real understanding of a potential employer. With little access to an in-person meeting environment, job seekers must be equipped to assess a company’s culture without ever stepping foot in an office. Although this can be difficult over video, there are ways to determine if you may be a good fit for a workplace. Here’s a few tips to help you find the perfect culture fit during a remote interview:

Gather information online

Turning to online resources can be a good starting place when you don’t have the ability to investigate the company’s office. To begin, be sure to check out the company’s website and social media profiles. From the social media profiles, you may be able to see photos or videos of team members within the company. Meanwhile, on the website, you may find a careers page or more information about the company’s culture and values.

If you’re unable to find much about the company culture through these channels, this could be a red flag. Although it can be difficult to tell anything about the culture otherwise, keep in mind that organizations with an open culture are proud to share that online to attract the best talent.

Additionally, be sure to check sites like Glassdoor for employee reviews. While it’s important to take reviews with a grain of salt, there is still valuable insight to gain.

Ask the right questions

To assess a company’s culture during a remote interview, it is critical that you utilize your interview time to ask the right questions about company culture. For example, here are some questions that can get you the answers you need to make a more informed decision:

  • Can you tell me about the company culture? Of course, there’s always a direct approach. Simply asking about the company culture in general can be a good place to start.
  • Is the work environment more collaborative or independent? When you’re working in a team environment, be sure to inquire about the team dynamics to determine whether that fits with your working style or personality.
  • What do you personally enjoy most about working here? Asking your interviewer about their personal experience can sometimes yield a more honest answer. By listening to their unique experience, you can get a sense of what people really love about working there.
  • How is success measured? When you understand how your work will be evaluated, you can better understand the overall culture around achieving goals. For example, the environment could encourage competition among team members, or it could encourage collaboration to achieve a team goal.

[Infographic] 15 Questions That Will Help You Stand Out In An Interview

Look for clues in the hiring process

In addition to asking the right questions, be on the lookout for behavioral clues during the remote interview that can help you determine the overall culture. For example, be sure to take note of the following:

  • Transparency: Throughout the hiring process, do you feel that your points of contact are keeping you updated on where you stand?  Or do you feel like you are being kept in the dark?
  • Professionalism: Depending on your preference, you might want a workplace that is very professional or a more laid-back environment. By assessing the behavior, tone, attitude, and even dress of employees throughout the hiring process, consider whether this is the right fit for you.
  • Timeliness: Just as a candidate is expected to value the time of their interviewers, be sure that you also feel that the organization values your time. If you are frequently kept waiting or your interviewers seem disorganized throughout the hiring process, this may not be a good sign.

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