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The Factor of “Fit” in the Hiring Process

You interviewed for a position, even going deep with several rounds, feeling as if you “aced it”. Two weeks later you receive an email that says, “We found someone who is a better fit.” Or, “We are moving in a different direction.” Or perhaps you were persistent and got someone on the phone to ask why y

ou were not selected. The answer was “It’s not a fit” and “Thank you for your interest. We will keep your application and resume on file. Should an opening come up in the future that is a better fit, we will contact you.”

And that legally is all they have to say.

Of course, this can open issues of discrimination and bias. This is very difficult for the individual candidate to prove discriminatory hiring. The interview is usually conducted with one interviewer, “he said, she said.”

But let’s move beyond that.

So, what is “fit” anyway? It is a significant factor in the hiring process.

• Job Fit

• Organizational Fit

• Team Fit

• Cultural and Job Fit

The Four Components Of “Fit” In The Hiring Process

1. Job performance

- How closely a candidate's skills and experience align with the open position's requirements. Does the candidate have the necessary tools and expertise to be successful? This is the first major hurdle. It should be noted that in addition to position-specific skills, soft skills such as communication, teamwork, critical thinking, relationship-building, cultural competence (working with background/generational differences), adaptability, and time management carry a significant weight in the hiring decision.

2. Organizational career tracking

- How well a candidate's career goals, expectations, and preferences match what the company can offer. To retain its talent, an organization must allow for employee development. AND the employee is responsible for mapping their career path. Job seekers should be prepared to show how their professional development goals match the organization’s goals.

3. Team dynamics

- How well a candidate's interpersonal skills and work preferences synergize with their potential work team.

4. Company culture

- How well a candidate's values, work styles, and personality mesh with the company's culture and existing employees.

If you the candidate are rejected and the reason given is “not a fit,” try the following:

Ask the interviewer/


How would you prioritize my “fit” for the job in the following four categories:

• Job qualifications

• Organizational growth track goals

• Team dynamics

• Company culture

And yes, you may have to define what each category means. But ask the question, you have nothing to lose.

Randy Block

is Career Plan Advisor & Professional Certified Coach.

Randy brings career expertise with 30+ years of high tech executive search and of over 16 years of coaching experience.

He is a requested and facilitates executive career groups. He is a Subject Matter Expert in LinkedIn, networking, personal branding, team building, interviewing, career management , and promotion positioning.

To learn more about Randy:

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