Selection is the process of putting right men on right job. It is a procedure of matching organizational requirement with skills and qualified people.
Selection is the process by which candidates for employment are divided into class-those who will be offered employment and those who will not.
Managerial decision making process as to predict which job applicants will be successful if hired
-David and Robbins
Selection is the process of choosing from among the candidates, from within the organization or from the outside, the most suitable person for the current position or for the future position.
Selection is the process of differentiating between applicants in order to identify (and hire) those with a greater likelihood of success in a job.
-Thomas H. Stone
The selection process consists of a series of steps. It is a series of successive hurdles or barriers which an applicant must cross. These hurdles or screens are designed to eliminate an unqualified candidate at any point in the selection process. This technique is called “successive hurdles technique”. According to Dale Yoder, the hiring process consists of go no go gauges. Candidates who qualify a hurdle go to the next stage while those who do not qualify are dropped out. However, every selection procedure does not contain all these hurdles. Moreover, the arrangement of these hurdles may differ from organisation to organisation. There is no standard selection procedure to be used in all organisations or for all jobs. The complexity of selection procedure increases with the level and responsibility of the position to be filled. The strategy and method used for selecting employees varies from firm to firm and from one job to another.
Steps involved in employee selection may be described as under:
- Preliminary Interview
First of all, initial screening is done to weed out totally undesirably/ unqualified candidates at the outset. Preliminary interview is essentially a sorting process in which prospective candidates are given the necessary information about the nature of the job and the organisation. Necessary information is also elicited from the candidates about their education, skills, experience, salary expected, etc. Preliminary interview is the first contact of an individual with the organisation. Therefore, the interviewers should be courteous, receptive and informal particularly when the candidate is being turned down.
- Application Blank
Application blank or form is one of the most common methods used to collect information on various aspects of the applicant’s academic, social, demographic, work related background and references. It is a brief history sheet of an employee’s background, usually containing the following things :
Application form helps to serve several objectives:
a) Scrutiny of the form helps to weed out candidates who are lacking in experience or some other eligibility traits.
b) It helps in formulating questions to be asked in the interview.
c) Data contained in application forms can be stored for future reference. Application form duly filled in is also called biodata or curriculum It provides factual information required for evaluating the candidate. It is also used as a basic record of personal data for those finally selected.
- Selection Test
A test is a sample of some aspect of an individual’s attitudes, behavior and performance. It also provides a systematic basis for comparing the behaviour, performance and attitudes of two more persons, Tests are based on the assumption that individuals differ in their job related traits which can be measured. Tests help to reduce bias in selection by serving as a supplementary screening device. Tests are helpful in better matching of candidate and the job. Tests may also reveal qualifications which remain covered in application form and interview. No test, however, is fool proof. At best it reveals that the candidates who have scored above the predetermined cut off points are likely to be more successful than those scoring below the cut off point. Tests are useful when the number of applicants is large. Further, tests will be useful only when they are properly designed and administered.
Some commonly used used employment tests are stated below :
i. Intelligence tests :
These are mental ability tests.They measure the incumbant’s learning ability and also the ability to understand instructions and make judgements. Intelligence tests measures several abilities such as memory, vocabulary, verbal fluency, numerical ability, perception, spatial visualization etc. Standford-Binet test, Wechsler Adult Intelligence Scale are some examples of standard intelligence tests. Some of these tests are increasingly used in competitive examinations while recruiting graduates and post graduates at entry level management positions.
ii. Aptitude Tests
An aptitude test measures the talents of a person that may be crucial to perform the job successfully. This test is normally given to those applicants who have no previous experience in that field. Hence, aptitude tests are appropriate for predicting the future ability and/or performance of the candidate. These tests are found to be more effective for jobs requiring mechanical and spatial relationships like those engineers, designers and machinists etc.
iii. Personality tests
Personality refers to the sum of the characteristics of a person which reflect on his/her response to a particular situation. The characteristics may include, among other things, introversion, inter-personal skills, motivation, stability, self- belief, courage, attitude and temperament. Its results are useful in predicting the future performance of the candidate. Rorschach Blot Test (RBT), Thematic Appreception Test (TAT), The Manifest Anxiety Scale are some popular forms of personality test. Of all the tests required for selection, personality tests have generated lot of heat and controversy. The definition of personality, methods of measuring personality factors and the relationship between personality factors and actual job criteria have been the subject of much discussion. Researchers have also questioned whether applicats answer all the items truthfully or whether they try to respond in a socially desirable manner. Regardless of these objectives, many people still consider personality as an important component of job success.
iv. Achievement Tests
These are designed to measure what the applicant can do on the job currently, i.e. whether the tests actually knows what he or she claims to know. A typing test shows typing proficiency, a shorthand test measures the testee’s ability to take dictation and transcribe, etc. Such proficiency tests are also known as work sampling tests. Work sampling is a selection test wherein the job applicant’s ability to do a small portion of the job is tested. These tests are of two types, Motor, involving physical manipulation of things (e.g. trade tests for carpenters, plumbers, electricians) or Verbal , involving problem situations that are primarily language oriented or people oriented (e.g. situational tests for supervisory jobs).
v. Simulation Tests
Simulation exercise is a test which duplicates many of the activities and problems an employee faces while at work. Such exercises are commonly used for hiring managers at various levels in an organization. To assess the potential of a candidate for managerial positions, assessment centers are commonly used.
vi. Assessment centre
An assessment centre is an extended work sample. It uses procedures that incorporate group and individual exercises. These exercises are designed to simulate the type of work which the candidate will be expected to do. The assessment centre approach , thus evaluates candidates’s potential for management on the basis of multiple assessment techniques, standardized methods of making inferences from such techniques, and pooled judgments from multiple assessors.
- Employment Interview
An interview is a conversation between two persons. In selection, it involves a personal, observational and face-to-face appraisal of candidates for employment. Interview is an essential element of Selection and no selection procedure is complete without one or more personal interviews. The information collected through application and test can be cross-checked in the interview.
Types of Interview
Interviews may be classified into following categories:
i. Informal Interview
Such interview may take place anywhere. It is not planned and is used when the staff is required urgently. A friend or relative of the employer may take a candidate to the house of the employer or manager who asks a few questions like name, birth place, education and experience, etc. When a candidate enquires about the vacancies after reading an advertisement, it is an example of informal interview.
ii. Formal lnterview
This type of interview is preplanned and is held in a formal atmosphere. All the formalities and procedures, e.g., the venue, the time, the pannel of interviewers, and the questions to be asked are decided in advance.
iii. Patterned or Structured Interview
Such interview is fully planned to a high degree of accuracy and precision. It is based on the assumption that to be most effective every pertinent detail should be worked out in advance. Therefore, a list of questions to be asked is prepared and the questions are asked in a particular cycle. The time to be allowed to each candidate and the information to be sought are predecided. The interviewer is carefully selected. The interviewer actively participates and the candidate is expected only to answer the questions. Thus, a standardised pattern is adopted or the structure of the interview is decided in advance. Such interview is also known as directed or guided interview.Patterned interview helps to minimise personal bias and prejudice and provides uniformity and consistency. It allows for a systematic coverage of the required information. But such an interview does not allow deep probing into the candidate’s mind.
iv. Non-Directed or Unstructured Interview
In this interview, the candidate is allowed to speak his mind freely. The interviewer carefully and patiently listens, prodding whenever the candidate is silent. In other words, the format of the interview is unplanned and the interview is not directed by questions to be asked.Non-directed interview is a more flexible approach and therefore the candidate feels more at ease. the candidate is allowed to determine the time and direction of discussion. The candidate is more likely to reveal his actual self. As a result, a better assessment of the candidate’s personality becomes possible. But unless the interviewer is very competent. the discussion may lose its direction and may become a rambling session with much wastage of time and effort.
v. Depth Interview
It is a semi-structured approach wherein details concerning one key area are sought. It is designed to intensively examine the candidate’s proficiency in his area of special interest. The purpose is to get a true picture of the candidate through deep probing into his mind. Experts in the concerned area of knowledge ask relevant questions so as to judge the candidate’s capabilities in the area. This type of interview requires a mature understanding of human behaviour on the part of the interviewer. Depth interview is the opposite of discussion interview.
vi. Group Interview
In this interview, groups rather than individuals are interviewed. Generally, a topic for discussion is given to the group. The candidates in the group are carefully observed as to who will lead the discussion, how well they will participate in the discussion, how each will make his presentation and how well they will react to each other’s views. Such interview is based on the assumption that behaviour displayed in a group situation is related to potential success in the job.
vii. Stress Interview
The purpose of such interview is to find out how a candidate behaves in stressful situation, i.e., whether he loses his temper, gets confused or frightened or feels frustrated. Therefore, the interviewer adopts hostile behaviour towards the candidate. He deliberately puts the candidate on the defensive by trying to annoy, embarrass or frustrate him. In order to put the candidate under strain, the interviewer asks questions rapidly, criticizes his answers, interrupts him frequently, keeps silent for unduly long periods of time, asks too many questions simultaneously, makes derogratory remarks, accuses him of lying and so on. Stress interview is used for jobs wherein emotional balance or resistance to stress is required.Such interview must be handled with utmost care and skill. It may not necessarily reveal how the candidate will behave in a real stressful situation involved in the job.
viii. Panel or Board Interview
In panel interview, the applicant meets with three to five interviewers who take turns asking questions. After the interview, the interviewers pool their observations to arrive at a consensus about the suitability of the applicant. Such an interview could limit the impact of the personal biases of any individual interviewer. On the negative side, as an applicant, a panel interview may make you feel more stressed than usual.
- Medical Examination
Applicants who have crossed the above stages are sent for a physical examination either to the company’s physician or to a medical officer approved for the purpose. Such examinations determine whether the candidate is physically fir to perform the job. Those who are physically unfit are rejected.
- Reference Checks
The applicant is asked to mention in his application form, the names and addresses of two or more persons who know him well. These may be his previous employers, heads of educational institutions or public figures. The organization contacts them by mail or telephone. They are assured that all information supplied will be kept confidential.
- Final approval
In most of the organizations, selection process is carried out by the human resource department. The decisions of this department are recommendatory. The candidates short listed by the department are finally approved by the executives of the concerned departments/units. Employment is offered in the form of letter mentioning the post, the rank, the salary grade, the date by which the candidate should join and other terms and conditions in brief.
Difference Between Recruitment and Selection
|1.||It is the process of searching for prospective candidates and encouraging them to apply for vacant jobs.||It is the process of choosing the right candidates.|
|2.||Since the aim of recruitment is to gather as many applicants as possible for the jobs in an organization, it is a positive task.||Selection attempts to eliminates applicants in different stages to end up with a smaller number of requisite candidates, and is thus a negative task.|
|3.||It always precedes selection.||It always succeeds recruitment.|
|4.||Recruitment is comparatively easy as it does not require expertise on the part of the recruiters to build an applicant pool.||Selection is a difficult job as it requires specialized knowledge and skills on the part of the selectors to choose the best candidates by predicting their likely performance.|
|5.||It does not lead to contract of service.||It leads to a contract of services between the employer and the selected candidate.|