Fit: what is it and how to evaluate?


In the area of people selection, the concept of fit is increasingly spoken of. But what is fit? In a simplified way, we could say that the the fit is if the person is the right size for that job role.


Several tests and companies have emerged based on this concept, including one of our products. The concept is spreading more and more.


o que é fit


However, it is still common to hear many misconceptions. The concept of what is fit is also often used to make up biases of evaluators and justify the lack of structure in some selection processes.


Thus, we recommend using what science has already studied and comprehends makes sense as an evaluation criterion. rganizational psychology describes four possible types of fit for a personwithin an organization. In this text, we will address some of them:


  1. What are the types of fit?
  2. What is P-O fit: building human capital
  3. What is P-J fit: the right person in the right place
  4. So, what should I do?


1. What are the types of fit?


O que é fit e como avaliá-lo?
Measuring the P-J fit and the P-O fit is an important step in understanding whether your candidate has adherence to the company and the desired position.


First, there are several types of fit. When we hear the term being used around, we are probably hearing about the fit person-organization (P-O fit), popularly known as cultural fit.


The P-O fit is focused on the match between a person's core values (those related to the career and the work environment) and the organizational culture of the company.


Another fundamental type is the P-J fit (from English person-job fit), which refers to the degree of match between the person's skills and personality and the function they will perform.


Two other types of fit that are even less studied and difficult to define are the PS fit (from the English person-supervisor fit) which is the fit between the person and the direct supervisor, in addition to the PG fit (from the English person-group fit), which is the fit between the person and the group / team he will be part of.


Why are they difficult to define?. It is difficult to prove which is the correct relationship.


For example, if the supervisor is an extrovert, should the subordinate be an extrovert too, or an introvert? It is possible to argue for both sides. Or is there no relationship? Or does it depend? If it depends, it depends on what?


These are all very difficult questions to answer and prove, so the relationships with organizational results of these two types have not yet been reasonably found.


In the video below, the concepts of 3 fits are explored: Person-Organization, Person-Job and Person-Group. Watch:



2. What is P-O fit: building human capital


Why is the fit of the person with the organization important? What does this explain? In numerical terms, o the Person-Organization fit is linked to turnover and satisfaction rates.


This is because when the person has values similar to that of the organization, he tends to have a greater sense of belonging. , and with that he tends to stay longer and feel better at work


And performance? Can being immersed in culture explain future performances? So-so


It is known that the relationship between cultural fit and individual performance at work is weak. When we think about it, the answer is even obvious: why would a link to culture explain if the person can do a good report analysis or produce more units per minute?


However, there are some complexities with the aforementioned notion. Culture is an effect at the group level, not the individual level. A cohesive group works better and produces more, and for that it needs to be aligned. 


That is why we say that cultural fit is one of the foundations of building human capital. Human capital means that the company has in its people a greater identity than simply the sum of individuals, thus creating a competitive advantage that is difficult to copy.


The investment of having superior human capital is increasingly important as companies depend more on people and companies that provide more services. In the service sector, the brand experience is driven by the marketing team of the company; if they are not in alignment the customer experience will suffer greatly.


Thus, even though cultural fit does not drive superior individual performance, it undoubtedly has a great impact on organizational performance.


3. What is P-J fit: The right person in the right place


O que é fit e como avaliá-lo?

Trying to hire people who are in the right company and in the right position. How do you know that? The fit is a good measure.


Person-Job fit is the description of whether the right person is in the right place. It is the key to maximizing people's potential.


Este tipo de the tem uma ligação mais forte com a performance na tarefa de fato. Apesar de parecer óbvio, a alocação das pessoas de acordo com as suas habilidades e seu potencial ainda é pouco utilizada. Por quê?


Primeiramente, dificilmente essas habilidades e potenciais são avaliadas da maneira correta. Nos processos seletivos, os cognitive biases inherent to the human being take over and it is simply judged whether the person is "good" or "bad".


Another point that occurs implicitly, is that the recruitment division is more concerned with the job role to be filled. It is very difficult for the recruiter to know if that person applying for the financial position would be great in the logistics area, despite the fact that he does not have any job vacancies at the moment.


It is a very complex analysis for the recruiter.


In performance management, in general, it is routinely evaluated whether the employee is performing well or not. This is because it is assumed each person is already well allocated.


Performance evaluation does not truly evaluate what its title is stating. Furthermore, it is difficult to know whether the sales person who is rated average would be great for the project area. Especially because her boss, who is carrying out the evaluation, is not able to know this and neither is her role the ideal location for her.


Therefore, people end up being misallocated and their potential is not maximized, and with that companies leave performance on the table..


The ideal allocation should be a function of the central HR, not delegable to the business managers . The only non-biased is the division with the holistic view and competence to make this mapping and with the vision of the whole to make the suggestions. This is indeed the path to a more strategic HR.


4. So, what should I do?


Therefore, what are the next steps?


Considering the points above, the organization must first seek to understand and define its culture.


For such an exercise, one should always think about tradeoffs. In other words, attributes of culture that really differentiate versus those that are a choice.


It’s quite the challenge to have, at the same time a culture of quality and detail, fast and agile, with a focus on people, processes and numerical results, as well as innovation and precision. It’s simply not possible. Thus, what will be the differential of your human capital?


Second, based on your companies’ organizational values, a certain degree of homogeneity amongst values is necessary.


You will only know that your organizational values are working when you do not hire a person who seemed to be a good candidate, but who was not aligned with your organization's culture. If not, you are probably disguising your personal conception of a good person within the company's culture, and this can be a problem.


Third, collect and centralize your people’s profile data and skills, and use this intelligence. If you have a database with these characteristics including those characteristics that were not approved in the selection processes, you will be able to suggest allocations, recover high potential people, and maximize the training and performance of your current human capital.


Hours of training are not a good indicator of human capital. However, the indicators P-O (Person – Organization) and P-J (Person – Job) of your people and candidates are! Only with these concrete and well-grounded intelligence indicators in place will a company be able to actually hire, manage, retain and grow talent.


o que é fit


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