What are Cultural Dynamics?

In your company, what are the core values — traits / attitudes / behaviors — of the people who consistently thrive? Would you hire more people with those characteristics if you could? While skill sets, experience and work styles will vary across different roles and responsibilities, common culture promotes significantly better interaction and ensures that people can get more work done. It’s not that you want to hire clones. More-of-exactly-the-same is limiting and will cause stagnation. Diversity in all dimensions is necessary for corporate health. By clearly understanding the dynamics of your unique culture, you can optimize your hiring processes and increase both corporate and employee growth.

Maximize your hiring success

Why Culture Matters

Peter Drucker, the renowned management consultant, is credited with stating:

“Culture eats strategy for breakfast”

The key points:

  • Culture correlates with performance
  • Culture is inherently difficult to copy
  • Healthy cultures enable organizations to adapt
  • Attention to cultural dynamics helps avoid hiring toxic workers


Your business wants top talent, and the top talent wants opportunities to grow and thrive. Leveraging cultural dynamics is a competitive advantage.

New hires who fail within 18 months
Higher shareholder returns compared to those organizations with weak and ineffective cultures
Transformation failures due to culture-related issues

How the Assessments Work

The Science  |  The Mechanics  |  The Construction

First, some general assessment basics:

  • An assessment is typically a series of questions about situations, experiences, preferences and beliefs
  • The questions and response options are carefully designed by Industrial-Organizational psychologists to capture comparable, unbiased data across a series of categories that represent personal and corporate values
  • An APTMetrics® Cultural Dynamics assessment adds the unique element of intermixing a great deal of information and “branding” about your company with the assessment questions
  • While you are learning about the candidates, they are learning about your company and why it would be an excellent place for a career


The Science

Cultural Dynamics assessments are implemented within a unique framework called a Cultural Blueprint. The model is based on the most common values found across enterprises in a range of large industries. We then define these values as measurable characteristics, traits, attitudes and behaviors. These include:
    • Accountability / Responsibility
    • Caring / Compassion
    • Customer Focus
    • Diversity / Inclusion
    • Excellence / Quality
    • Innovation
    • Integrity
    • Respect for Others
    • Sustainability / Environmental
    • Teamwork / Collaboration
This Blueprint is divided into three tiers, and a Cultural Dynamics assessment can be targeted at specific tiers in any combination.

Cultural Foundation

This layer collects data which predicts a candidate’s ability to first learn and adapt to your existing culture.

Cultural Alignment

The data from this layer predicts a candidate’s ability to align with and drive your company’s existing culture forward.

Cultural Contribution

This layer collects data which predicts a candidate’s ability to ultimately shape and/or create an expanded culture that supports your company’s strategic vision.

The combined results of an assessment provide validated information which is effective for both the initial candidate screening and hiring decisions, and the longer-term employee growth and promotion life-cycle.

The specific assessments that comprise the tiers of the Blueprint will be aligned with your organization’s value structure and rigorously tested for Predictive Validity and Fairness.

They can be adapted for either broad applicability across job classes or targeted to specific roles as appropriate.

The Mechanics

The primary objective of a Cultural Dynamics assessment is to manage high-volume screening of job candidates in an efficient, effective, legally defensible manner.
    • Efficient means handling the candidate flow in a rapid, simple, consistent process
    • Effective means properly categorizing candidates for appropriate follow-up while delivering an engaging experience and a positive brand message
    • Legally defensible means treating every candidate uniformly and offering a validated and fair assessment of the targeted attributes
APTMetrics® Cultural Dynamics assessments are designed specifically to be experienced on smartphones or other mobile devices for easy, flexible delivery. They can also be deployed on browser-based kiosks with touch screens. Most are constructed to take between 15 and 30 minutes to complete. One typical usage model is a job fair:
    • As candidates come by your recruiting booth, they receive a card with an assessment URL and a unique token key
    • At their convenience, the candidate would load the assessment site and enter their bio data and the single-use token
    • Then, they would take the assessment, profiling themselves while learning about your company and brand
    • The end of the assessment could provide immediate feedback or describe what to expect for follow-up
    • Recruiting managers receive summary and detail reports that inform the subsequent steps in the screening process
An alternative usage is to present the assessment URL as a link on a recruiting website. Candidates would simply use their email address as the unique key for a specific assessment instance.

A JOURNEY vs a “Test”

A Cultural Dynamics assessment comes to life for candidates through a “JOURNEY” construct that provides a visually captivating user experience. While completing the assessment, candidates participate in a guided journey through your organization, where they will learn about you while you learn about them to the benefit of both sides. For example, a hospitality company could choose to use different resort destinations as their journey theme, while other options could be exploring different corporate divisions or describing different job roles. The chosen theme sets a graphical style that is carried through the assessment for increased candidate engagement. Each stop on a journey presents both corporate messaging and a set of assessment questions. Driving the journey is a visual narrator who guides the candidates through the process. Narrators are chosen to fit with your brand style and recruiting objectives, and “talk” to candidates in first-person for a highly engaging experience.

Swipe through the screen samples below and, of course, don’t hesitate to contact us for a full demonstration. Click on an image to expand.

The Construction

The phrase “off-the-shelf” always sounds good since it implies ready-to-go rapid deployment  with a known cost. Unfortunately, it also implies generic one-size-fits-all.

The word “custom” suggests you can have absolutely anything you want, but is also frequently synonymous with “expensive” and slow to get operational.

Cultural Dynamics assessments are positioned as “adaptable.” Fully tested components with a range of choices and options. They can be tailored to meet your requirements in a short timeframe, and are extensible if there is a specific need.


Definitions & Mapping

Define your corporate culture and values in behavioral terms. Map assessment content to these key behaviors. This will come from interviews and your direct input.



Choose a guide to narrate the assessment. The persona can be younger/older casual/formal male/female or multi-diversity. Pick from our set of models, or we can arrange for a specific model of your choice (possibly wearing branded clothing) to be photographed in the necessary poses.


Journey Theme

Decide on a theme for the JOURNEY construct. Examples are office locations or territories vs corporate business divisions vs various job types or roles. You supply the imagery that we load into the assessment frames.



Test the assessment mechanics and reporting. Execute a validation process to ensure that your assessment identifies the best candidates that will thrive in your culture.

Watch the Promo Video

Key Features

  • Customized graphical “journey” storylines that enable candidates to learn about your organization while you learn about them

  • Structures that can be adapted across multiple job levels or specific roles

  • 15- to 30-minute assessments that are optimized for mobile devices

  • Detailed feedback reports for selection, on-boarding and development

Extraordinary Benefits

  • Efficiently sort through high volumes of candidates objectively and fairly

  • Identify candidates who will thrive in your organization

  • Provide candidates with a highly engaging learning and assessment experience

  • Retain new hires for the long term

  • Improve team productivity

  • Deliver immediate bottom-line impact through reduced turnover and improved job performance

Additional Reading
Cultural Dynamics Assessments
Cultural Dynamics WP