90 per cent of Canadian managers hire for fit: tweak your resume so that you are it

The vast majority, 90 per cent, of Canadian managers say that a candidate’s fit with the organizational culture is equal to or more important than their skills and experience. Your personality really matters when landing a job.

Those are the findings of a new survey by Robert Half. They spoke with over 1,200 managers from mid to large-sized companies, as well as 500 workers. Nearly half of workers agreed that cultural fit is a deal-breaker when considering an opportunity. Forty per cent of those participating said that they wouldn’t accept a job that was a perfect match if the corporate culture clashed.

“Today’s professionals are looking to do more with their careers than satisfy a job description; they want to be part of an organization whose values align with their own and feel inspired with a sense of purpose in the workplace,” said Greg Scileppi, president of Robert Half. “For companies, this means evaluating more than a candidate’s skills or qualifications to find the right fit for their business. There has to be a focus on identifying individual motivations and promoting the type of work environment that puts employee engagement and success at the heart of the corporate culture.”

Most workers surveyed say that their ideal company culture would be team-oriented and supportive, however they find their current workplace to be overly traditional and competitive.

Hack your resume for cultural fit

Not everyone agrees on whether or not you should include interests and hobbies on your resume. Some experts feel that it helps show your personality makes you more relatable as a candidate. Others insist that details about what you do in your free time just take up valuable space.

I think that you should only include hobbies and interests on a resume when you can use them to specifically advance your candidacy. So, for example, if you enjoy long walks with your dogs, leave it off your resume unless you’re applying to a job involving animals.

Sometimes, however, you can use this space to demonstrate how well you fit in with the corporate culture. Look at the company website and social media. Check out what team activities they participate in. Let’s say the About Us page includes photos of the company volleyball team and the group participating in a run to raise funds for charity. You use this information to tweak your resume to indicate your love of running, supporting charities, and playing team sports.

This gives you something relatable to talk about with the hiring manager and emphasizes your fit with the team.

(Note: if you absolutely hate the sorts of activities the team seems to pride itself on, you might rethink your interest in the position. You’re less likely to be happy somewhere that you just don’t fit in.)

See more about determining a workplace culture before accepting a job.

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