Great Hiring is All About Finding the “RIGHT MATCH”

Great Hiring is All About Finding the “RIGHT MATCH”

by Jeanne Knutzen | October 13, 2017

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When candidates are screened for both “can do” and “wanna do” qualities, there is a big difference in their performance and retention.

At PACE Staffing Network, finding the employee who is the right “match” for a job isn’t just about their “can do” qualifications (ie. the required skills, knowledge and experience) but also about their “wanna do’s” – what makes them excited about coming to work each day.  Even beginner level candidates “can do” a lot of jobs, but there are only a few they really “want to do”.   We know that a candidate’s  “can dos” will get them hired, but its their  “wanna dos” that “makes a difference” to their performance on the job!   

Hiring candidates based on their “match” is no small matter.

We know first hand that employees who are well matched to their job, will out perform their equally qualified but less well matched counterparts – often as much as 2 to 1.  They stay in their jobs longer;  they are  happier, more productive at work;  they are the mainstay of team and company morale.  

Here’s what our recruiters consider when screening candidates for “match”

Will this candidate love what they are asked to do – each and every day?

When working with our clients to develop a “recruiting profile” we always start with a clear understanding of the work to be performed.  Knowing as much as we can about a “ day in the life” is key to placement success.  Here’s why:

  • People like to do things they know they do well.  A job that fuels an employees need to “achieve” is key to job satisfaction and employee retention.
  • People like to learn.  The right “match” happens when the employee has already mastered some parts of the work, but where there is still room to grow – where they will be challenged.      
  • There are things about most jobs that some candidates will do really well while other candidates won’t.  The right match happens when the employee can work from their strengths. .  
    • Does the work require a strong focus on accuracy and details?  Or is it better done by someone who likes to work fast – even if making occasional errors?
    • Will the job require the employee to work under the pressure of  tight “can’t be missed” deadlines?  Or is the job one where deadlines are self imposed and frequently negotiable?
    • Does the work offer the employee an opportunity to help others achieve results, or will they be expected to deliver results on their own?
    • Is the work repetitive and routine with one or two high impact tasks, or does it involve a lot of variety, with frequent changes in priorities?
    • Does the job give the employee a chance to work with others – coworkers or customers – or will they be working alone with minimal opportunity to interact with others?

        Employees do best when the requirements to be successful match up with their real talents.    

How much previous experience or education is actually relevant to on the job performance?        

This can be tricky as many of our clients will “over request” on both  “years of experience”and educational requirements – not fully understanding that for some employees having 5 years of work experience is like having one year of experience 5 times.

We think more important to the right match is understanding what components of the job the employee needs to have mastered on day one, and what components can be taught or learned on the job.  Recognizing that the more experience our client requests, the tougher the recruit and the more expensive the employee is likely to be,  here’s what we like to know….

  • How long will it take the average to above average employee to master this job?
  • How relevant is the employee’s experience with a similar employer? What skills and experiences will be transferable?  What skills are company or department specific and must be learned on the job?
  • What kind of support resources will be available to the employee during the learning process?  Are their written process documents?  Are there  people close by who they can use for help?
  • How will additional education or experience impact the employee’s ability to do the job?

Do the logistics of the job match up with what’s important to the employee? 

  • Is the job in the right location so it is easy for the employee to get to work?
  • Does the pay meet the candidate’s financial needs and expectations?
  • Is the physical environment beneficial to the employee? Can they do their best work in an open work space, for example, or do they need something more private?
  • Does your company’s benefit offerings meet the candidate’s base needs – for healthcare benefits? Time off for holidays?  Vacations? Etc.
  • Does the hours of work  match up with the candidate’s needs for flexibility?
  • Is your dress code in line with their current or preferred wardrobe?

     The logistics of the job has to be right or an employee’s retention is at risk!   

Does the team’s “way of working”  (i.e. their culture)  match up with how the candidate works best? 

  • Is personal initiative encouraged,  or are the roles on the team highly structured, with standardized work processes?
  • Does the team rely on  “meetings” to get work done, or are “meetings” the exception and not the rule?
  • How does the team communicate?  text? chat? e mail? in person?
  • What kind of training will be provided – structured classroom style, or on the fly?
  • How will the employee’s performance be measured? Do they have specific metrics or will appraisals be more subjective?
  • How will the employee be supervised? Get feedback? Will this candidate like working for the BOSS? 
  • How frequently do work routines change? Often? Never?  How good is the candidate with change?
  • How are team or individual achievements recognized and celebrated? 
  • Do the folks on your team socialize outside of work hours? What will it take for the new employee to fit in?

Do the opportunities for “more” match up with the employee’s aspirations? 

  • What kind of jobs are likely to become available for the candidate in the foreseeable future? What aspirations does the candidate have for promotion?  By when?
  • Your team or company’s plans for growth? Are you growing fast enough to offer opportunity to advance, or will the employee have to change teams or companies to advance?  How long do you need to have this employee be on your team to get the pay off you need?
  • Is the team or the company the right size for the employee to have their contributions noticed? To have impact? How important is having impact to the candidate?

Does the company’s mission fuel the candidate’s passion?

  • Does your company or team have a mission that you would like a candidate to get excited about?
  • Is there anything about how your company “makes a difference” that could be a turn off to a prospective employee?

Making the “right match” is not easy.  In today’s tight candidate marketplace, it is critically important for hiring managers to get clear on what matters most about the “match” and what components can be wiggled just a bit and still have a successful hire.  What are the MUST HAVES, different from the WOULD LIKES?

This article was written by Jeanne, Knutzen Founder and CEO of PACE Staffing Network. PACE has been helping Northwest job seekers find employment and employers find the right talent for over 40 years!  The PACE Staffing Network is part of that elite group of staffing companies who have been rated by their customers to be in the top 2% of the staffing industry, earning the BEST OF STAFFING designation by independent industry surveyor, Inavero.

You can contact Jeanne directly on any matter related to employment, hiring, staffing at or check us out at







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