Recruiting and Selection: Keys to Success
Stuart Greenfield, Ph.D.The aging of the public sector workforce will require organizations to develop newstrategies to maintain workforce quality, and one area that will require new practices willbe recruiting.In the past, government agencies have not been very proactive in recruiting. A reason forthis was the influx of baby boomers in the 70’s. With the departure of baby boomers andthe increased competition for highly qualified workers, government will need to adoptpolicies and practices that will improve the ability of the public sector to compete forhuman resources.One of the principle functions of human resources is recruitment. In the private sector,firms have had to adopt policies to ensure the best possible pool of applicants is available.A reason for this is that the market has forced companies to implement up-to-dateprocesses to succeed in a more competitive environment.In the third edition of
Personnel and Human Resource Management
(© 1987, WestGroup, Minneapolis/St. Paul), Randall Schuler described recruitment as “the set of activities and processes used to legally obtain a sufficient number of qualified people atthe right place and time so that the people and the organization can select each other intheir own best short and long term interests.”Recruitment is critical to an organization obtaining the best people who will be neededfor an organization to fulfill both its short and long term objectives effectively andefficiently. Without qualified staff, it would be very difficult to be effective and efficient.Recruitment addresses one activity needed to achieve an exemplary workforce; beyondrecruiting having an effective selection procedure is also necessary.Are there ways to improve the recruitment activity? Yes, there are a number of things thatshould improve the recruiting process. Among these activities are: 1) improved branding,2) increased use of the Internet, 3) developing relationships with colleges, and 4) greateruse of internships or co-op programs. The selection process also requires thedevelopment of improved processes and dissemination of how these revisions will impactinternal customers and reduce applicant cycle time.All organizations, both public and private, would probably agree that the resource mostcritical to success is people. Recognizing and publicizing an organization’s image iscritical to attracting the most qualified candidates. Efforts to inform the public about thework done by an agency are essential to developing one’s brand. There are plenty of examples of how an agency provided exemplary service to its customers in an efficientand effective way. Providing this information to the public will improve one’s brand.