The need for a career change and an updated resume often results from a breakdown in employee-employer synergy, making one or both parties feel as if they are headed in opposite directions when it comes to vision and values. Frequently, this incompatibility reflects a lack in cultural alignment, or cultural fit, which is also a consideration for companies that are hiring.

What Is Cultural Fit?

In current times, most companies place high value on employee interaction, collaboration, and innovation, which makes cultural fit a vital asset for potential new-hires and a critical requirement of the hiring organization. Cultural fit extends beyond a job candidate satisfying criteria for experience, skills, and professional talents; it considers how well the potential new-hire would assimilate into and enrich the company’s work culture as an active member, team player, and source of innovation and aspiration.

Cultural alignment looks at the processes implemented to achieve goals and expectations, as the methods and practices are as important as the outcome. It considers the driving forces behind the way a company and its employees operate, accomplish objectives, and attain success.

The essential elements and expectations of a company’s cultural identity vary from organization to organization and align with its mission, purpose, short- and long-term goals, and branding. When assessing a candidate’s resume or in-person interview, hiring companies may consider the following areas of importance to ensure a cultural fit:

  • What culture does the candidate thrive in, and does it align with the company’s culture?
  • What is the candidate’s preferred work environment?
  • What does the candidate like best about the company’s work environment?
  • What does the candidate perceive the company’s culture to be like, and how does this align with what the candidate has to offer?
  • How can the candidate fit into and enrich the company’s culture, and what previous work experiences and capabilities would help the candidate accomplish this?
  • What are some previous examples of when the candidate did or did not align with a work culture?

A robust, transparently communicated, well understood, and positively embraced company culture results in stimulated, lasting employee engagement and buy-in, encouraging employees to actively take part in company success. The universally adapted good of the whole prevails over individual employees’ self-interest and self-motivation.

How Can You Address Cultural Fit in Your Resume?

Aligning your resume with cultural fit demands more time and thoughtful consideration, as rather than distributing one general resume, you must align your resume with each hiring company’s culture.

Despite applying to fewer jobs due to the time spent tailoring your resume, the outcome can be more successful over a one-size-fits-all resume because your assets will be clearly aligned with the position at hand and address the company’s specific criteria, garnering attention over the competitive pool of applicants vying for the job.

How can you address cultural fit in your resume?

  • Visit the company’s website to experience its mission, vision, leadership, values, products/services, branding, market place positioning, contrast with competitors, and customer base
  • Consider how you and your professional experiences, expertise, accomplishments, and values align with the above factors
  • Clearly illustrate concrete examples of projects, initiatives, solutions, and practices you implemented for previous employers to achieve these factors; define the outcomes in quantifiable measures (numbers and percentages) that show company benefit in profitability, productivity, and growth thanks to your contributions to teamwork and enterprise
  • Match the style, language, and tone of your cover letter to the company’s culture

Although creating a resume that speaks to company culture is more work on your behalf, it can help you land a new job that is more rewarding, longer-lasting, and in line with your own goals, strengths, and interests. The result will be a better fit with your new employer and a job you don’t mind going to every day.

For more tips on general resume writing, visit some of our other blogs on the topic:

Learn more about All About Writing at Remember, with All About Writing, writing help is just a call or click away! Call us today to schedule your free consultation and get your project underway. We are here to assist with any phase of the project.

-by Christa Riddle


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