Streamling the Employee Selection Process

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“Selection is a highly subjective and inexact process”. Examine this statement citing examples you are familiar with. In your opinion, what steps can be taken to minimize selection errors?



Subjectivity in employee selection implies inconsistency and unreliability in the whole selection procedure. This renders it inexact. While interpreting the above-mentioned statement, we can have a critical look at the real life recruitment examples below:

The statement implies “inconsistency and unreliability in the selection procedure” Reliability is minimized when two people evaluating the same candidate provide the quite different ratings, and when the ratings of a candidate taken at two different times are significantly differs. When selection scores are unreliable, their validity is diminished. Therefore, the selection of the candidate will now be subjective based on any of the following as it pleases the selection team or panel. Such subjective measures are: • Emotional and physical state of the candidate. Reliability suffers if candidates are particularly nervous during the assessment process. • Lack of rapport with the administrator of the measure. Reliability suffers if candidates are "turned off" by the interviewer and thus do not "show their stuff" during the interview. • Inadequate knowledge of how to respond to a measure. Reliability suffers if candidates are asked questions that are vague or confusing. • Individual differences among respondents. If the range or differences in scores on the attribute measured by a selection device is large, that means the device can reliably distinguish among people. • Question difficulty. Questions of moderate difficulty produce the most reliable measures. If questions are too easy, many applicants will give the correct answer and individual differences are lessened; if questions are too difficult, few applicants will give the correct answer and, again, individual differences are lessened. • Length of measure. As the length of a measure increases, its reliability also increases. For example, an interviewer can better gauge an applicant's level of interpersonal skills by asking several questions, rather than just one or two. Following are other factors that render employee selection a very highly subjective and inexact process and they are the worst mistakes to avoid:

1) Doing Nothing but Talking During an Interview

Every interview needs to have components other than questions, answers and discussion. Walk the candidate through the company. Ask about his or her experience with situations you point out during the walk. In a manufacturing company, ask how the candidate would improve a process.

2) Evaluating "Personality," Not Job Skills and Experience

Sure, it would be nice for you to like everyone at work. But, this is much less important than recruiting the strongest, smartest, best candidates you can find. People tend to hire people who are similar to themselves. They are the most comfortable with those candidates, of course.

3) Failing to Differentiate, Via Testing and Discussion, the Critical Job Skills

How do you differentiate one candidate from another? Everyone has a "wish list" for all of the qualities, skills, personality factors, experience and interests you want to see in your selected employee. You must decide on, and perhaps, test, the skills you most desire in your candidate.

4) Developing a Small Candidate Pool

Take the time to build a candidate pool with several candidates who meet the needs of your organization. If you don't have to make a choice among several qualified candidates, your pool is too small. Don't "settle" for someone if you don't have the right person with the skills and experience you need. It's better to reopen your search.

5) Not pre-screening Candidates

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