“Sometimes you’re looking for a particular specialist and you know there are only one or two out there”

When Kim Dielwart talks about her job at TNO, her eyes light up. She loves her job. All TNO specialists do.

Why do you love your work so much?

“I take great pleasure in witnessing how putting the right people together can instantly create a team capable of achieving great things by using everyone’s talents to the fullest. As a recruiter I am glad to play my part, particularly in a high-tech organization like ours whose employees are among the smartest 1% in the country and where innovation is paramount. Sometimes you’re looking for a particular specialist and you know there are only one or two out there. When you’re able to convince them to come and work for TNO, you feel fantastic.”

How do you convince people that TNO is the best employer for them?

“In the world of academics and in the business community, people often find themselves restricted to one specific field of research or area of expertise. TNO is different. At TNO, you’re expected to become involved in a wide variety of research projects with applications in industries such as high-tech, aerospace, oil and gas, biomedical and so on and so forth. We also have Early Research Programmes here, where we build on our body of knowledge in areas that we believe will have a huge social and economic impact in the long term. TNO gives you the freedom to conduct research and work on projects that are a good match for you and your ambitions; projects you believe will lead to new innovative scientific breakthroughs.”

Are you a technology buff yourself?

“I was good at physics in secondary school and was always interested in learning more about how the world works. When I walk through the labs with my colleagues and see all the instruments that TNO is developing, or when I wear a blue suit to take a look in the clean rooms, my nerdy side comes out. Of course I could never fully grasp what the specialists are doing as this simply is not my area of expertise. But thanks to their passionate and clear explanations, I have a general idea of what their research is all about. They take the time to patiently explain the activities and inventions that are all part of a day’s work to them, but exceptional and amazing to me. The great thing is that they look at me as an expert in my field too. All of this makes me feel like my work as a recruiter really adds value and contributes to TNO’s success.

What do you look for in a candidate, in addition to a good CV?

“Personal development, for starters. The ability someone has to look at their own strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and limitations. In addition to that I believe a vision and a sense of entrepreneurship are also important: what opportunities do you see for yourself in your field of expertise and how do you plan to contribute to this field? And, last but not least, I believe in passion and drive: people who really love what they do, who are inventive, creative, clever and are always willing to go that extra mile for science.”


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