March 29th 2022
By: Marie-Christine Drouin

Why be Interested in Values when Recruiting? 

In this time of widespread labor shortages, more and more companies are competing to attract and retain the best talent. A lot of emphasis is on employer branding and candidate experience, with good reason. To this end, an increasing number of organizations are identifying their values, publicizing them, and evaluating them when it comes to potential employees. But is this additional information really value-added?  Why worry about it when it is already difficult to hire new talent? 

What Exactly is Meant by “Value”? 

Even if the concept of value may seem “soft”, it remains fundamental, both for the person and for the organization. There are two main types of values:  

Personal values:  

  • Refer to what an individual considers important in life; 
  • Guide a person’s attitudes, behaviors, and beliefs within an organization; 
  • Allow you to give meaning to your work; 
  • Are relatively stable over time (Bilodeau, 2019). 

Organizational values: 

  • Refer to the set of common beliefs shared by staff regarding how to achieve goals; 
  • Are established and communicated through the mission and objectives of the organization, its structure, decisions, policies, procedures, management practices, and various actions (Bilodeau, 2019). 

Here are some examples of organizational values, which are varied:  

  1. Openness to diversity 
  2. Work-life balance 
  3. Relationships with others 
  4. Quality of service 
  5. Creativity and innovation 
  6. Integrity 
  7. Growth 
  8. Sustainable development 

Person-Organization Compatibility: Observations that Persist!  

An individual whose values align with those of the organization will derive greater satisfaction with their work and organization. In turn, this satisfaction will lead to greater commitment on the part of the individual as well as a lower staff turnover rate within the organization.  

Values have a long history of interest to professionals and researchers! Schneider’s (1987) theory of attractiveness, selection, and attrition suggests that people are attracted to organizations that align with their values and interests and that, conversely, organizations tend to select those candidates most like themselves. Once recruited by an organization, people whose values do not align with those of the organization tend to leave the organization, voluntarily or not. 

Benefits of Person-Organization Compatibility 

P-O compatibility can influence several aspects of an employee’s attitude and behavior, including: 

  • Satisfaction with their job, the organization, their colleagues and their manager 
  • Team cohesion 
  • Commitment to the organization 
  • Performance 

Conversely, when this compatibility is not present, isolating behaviors, some pressure, intention to leave, staff turnover, and decreased performance are attitudes and behaviors that can manifest themselves (Verquer, Beehr and Wagner, 2003; Arthur et al., 2006; Hoffman and Woehr, 2006). Differences and gaps between the values of the individual and organizational culture can even be a potential source of conflict, difficulties in adapting (or even health), performance, and can hinder loyalty. 

Impact of Values on Talent Attraction 

Once  organizational values are clearly established, the organization is all the more able to attract and  retain new talent. Simply making organizational values clear to job seekers already helps attract motivated people (Simard, 2013).    

But, wait and see, potential employees are not fooled!  They will want concrete examples of the impact of values on the environment and the working climate. They will be curious to know how the company manages to share its values, what are the experiences lived by employees and what are the results. It is not the choice of values as such that is crucial but rather with what conviction the company is committed (Simard, 2013). 

The best way to attract, engage, and retain employees is not to offer a better salary, but rather to give them a different experience that stems, among other things, from organizational values. 

Values: Measurable but not Immutable! 

Yes, fortunately, the values of potential employees are indeed measurable. They can be assessed in different ways, including by a purpose-designed test with proven psychometric qualities (for example, the Organizational Values Test (Tvo) of our HRid range of tests).  

Organizational values are key factors in shaping an organizational climate and influence how the organization is managed. These values are the links that connect the individual to their organization. However, in the life of a company, values can evolve, just like in ours. The harmony between our values and those of the organization must therefore be regularly revisited.  


In this era of severe labor shortages, several elements remain crucial for optimal talent management and, ultimately, the success of organizations. Among these, person-organization compatibility remains a guarantee of success for both parties, and this compatibility cannot be complete and sustainable without considering their respective values.  

Marie-Christine Drouin, M.Ps.

Leader – Talent Assessment, I/O Psychologist, Coach


Arthur Jr., W., Bell, S. T., Doverspike, D., & Villado, A. J. (2006). The use of person-organization fit in employment decision making: An assessment of its criterion-related validity.  Journal of Applied Psychology, 9(4), 786-801. 

Bilodeau, C. (2019). Decision-making: a balance between personal, professional and organizational values. Online. Accessed March 4, 2022 from: 

Hoffman, B. J., & Woehr, D. J. (2006). A quantitative review of the relationship between person organization fit and behavioral outcomes. Journal of Vocational Behavior, 68, 389-399. 

Simard, S. (2013). Clarify your organizational values.  Online. Accessed March 4, 2022 from: 

Verquer, M. L., Beehr, T. A., & Wagner, S. H. (2003). A meta-analysis of the relations between personorganization fit and work attitudes. Journal of Vocational Behavior, 63, 473-489.