Employee Selection

Topics: Employment, Recruitment, Interview Pages: 6 (1862 words) Published: September 28, 2010
Individual Research Essay
(2) Describe the different employee selection methods and specify which work best for different jobs.

Employees form the basis of a successful organisation and the abilities and behavior of employees can vary the performance of an organisation significantly. Due to the fact that respective jobs require specific sets of skills or attributes, selections are essential in ensuring that the most suitable candidates are hired. Selection refers to the process of assessing candidates by various means and making a choice followed by an offer of employment (Graham, 1998, p.206). It is often thought of as an integral part of human resource management within an organization, which allows firms to gain a competitive advantage in the wider market. An innumerable number of selection methods are used for recruitment and promotional purposes in a global context, and both reliability and validity must be taken into consideration in determining the viability of such strategies. Validity can be defined as the extent to which something measures what it claims to measure; while reliability refers to the degree to which interviews, tests and other selection procedures yield comparable data over a period of time, and the degree to which two or more methods yield similar results or are consistent (Hartel, Fujimoto, Strybosch & Fitzpatrick, 2007, p.287). This essay aims to expound on the most commonly used selection methods, namely application forms and subsequent reference checks, interviews and performance simulation tests. In doing so, it also examines the broader implications of the adoption of such techniques and the suitability of respective jobs with various methods.

Application forms are the first step in the employee selection process, and are often used in conjunction with background checks. Application forms require a prospective employee to submit relevant information, such as personal details and prior job experience to the organisation as part of the hiring procedure. These are usually adapted to align with the specific requirements and objectives of a firm, thereby reducing the applicant pool, while simultaneously allowing increased efficiency in terms of the total amount of time and fiscal resources spent during recruitment (Boella, 1996; Roberts, 1999). Furthermore, Cole states that the standardization of organizational structures in application forms can also be highly advantageous to employers, as it allows for convenient comparison between applicants and job criteria (Cole, 2002). Hence, application forms should be regarded as appropriate for a large majority of job types, as the job-specific nature of each questionnaire deems it relevant to employment in most industries. Although the use of application forms is a significant stage in narrowing the field in terms of job applicants, certain administrative problems may arise for employers due to the illegibility of applicants’ handwriting (Nicholas C. Burkholder, Preston J. Edwards, Libby Sartain – On Staffing). However, the proliferation of technology and online services could signify a decreased dependence on written application forms. Similarly, resumes are often regarded as an alternative solution to application forms and involve the submission of similar information pertaining to the prerequisites of the job. Resumes lack an element of legality, and tend to be based on positive attributes, while failing to take employee weaknesses into consideration. Thus, reference checks are an essential supplement in screening job applicants to avoid incidences of employment fraud. Reference checks are brief statements made by a third party; usually the candidate’s superior in order to confirm the accuracy of information supplied by an applicant (Cole, 2002). Background checks are performed to corroborate with facts supplied by applicants, and confirm that candidates possess no derogatory information such as prior criminal activity that could harm a...

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