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Recruitment management system is the comprehensive tool to manage the entire recruitment processes of an organization. It is one of the technological tools facilitated by the information management systems to the HR of organizations. Just like performance management, payroll and other systems, Recruitment management system helps to contour the recruitment processes and effectively managing the ROI on recruitment. The features, functions and major benefits of the recruitment management system are explained below: Structure and systematically organize the entire recruitment processes. Recruitment management system facilitates faster, unbiased, accurate and reliable processing of applications from various applications. Helps to reduce the time-per-hire and cost-per-hire.
Recruitment management system helps to incorporate and integrate the various links like the application system on the official website of the company, the unsolicited applications, outsourcing recruitment, the final decision making to the main recruitment process.
Recruitment management system maintains an automated active database of the applicants facilitating the talent management and increasing the efficiency of the recruitment processes.
Recruitment management system provides and a flexible, automated and interactive interface between the online application system, the recruitment department of the company and the job seeker. Offers tolls and support to enhance productivity, solutions and optimizing the recruitment processes to ensure improved ROI. Recruitment management system helps to communicate and create healthy relationships with the candidates through the entire recruitment process. The Recruitment Management System (RMS) is an innovative information system tool which helps to sane the time and costs of the recruiters and improving the recruitment processes. According to Edwin B. Flippo, ―Recruitment is the process of searching the candidates for employment and stimulating them to apply for jobs in the organisation‖. Recruitment is the activity that links the employers and the job seekers. A few definitions of recruitment are: A process of
finding and attracting capable applicants for employment. The process begins when new recruits are sought and ends when their applications are submitted. The result is a pool of applications from which new employees are selected. It is the process to discover sources of manpower to meet the requirement of staffing schedule and to employ effective measures for attracting that manpower in adequate numbers to facilitate effective selection of an efficient working force. Recruitment of candidates is the function preceding the selection, which helps create a pool of prospective employees for the organization so that the management can select the right candidate for the right job from this pool. The main objective of the recruitment process is to expedite the selection process.
Recruitment is a continuous process whereby the firm attempts to develop a pool of qualified applicants for the future human resources needs even though specific vacancies do not exist. Usually, the recruitment process starts when a manger initiates an employee requisition for a specific vacancy or an anticipated vacancy.
RECRUITMENT NEEDS ARE OF THREE TYPES:
PLANNED . The needs arising from changes in organization and retirement policy.
ANTICIPATED Anticipated needs are those movements in personnel, which an organization can predict by studying trends in internal and external environment.
UNEXPECTED Resignation, deaths, accidents, illness give rise to unexpected needs.
PURPOSE AND IMPORTANCE OF RECRUITMENT Attract and encourage more and more candidates to apply in the organization. Create a talent pool of candidates to enable the selection of best candidates for the organization. Determine present and future requirements of the organization in conjunction with its personnel planning and job analysis activities. Recruitment is the process which links the employers with the employees. Increase the pool of job candidates at minimum cost.
Help increase the success rate of selection process by decreasing number of visibly under qualified or overqualified job applicants. Help reduce the probability that job applicants once recruited and selected will leave the organization only after a short period of time. Meet the organizations legal and social obligations regarding the composition of its workforce. Begin identifying and preparing potential job applicants who will be appropriate candidates. # Increase organization and individual effectiveness of various recruiting techniques and sources for all types of job applicants
1. Identify vacancy
2. Prepare job description and person specification
3. Advertising the vacancy
4. Managing the response
6. Arrange interviews
7. Conducting interview and decision making
The recruitment process is immediately followed by the selection process i.e. the final interviews and the decision making, conveying the decision and the appointment formalities.
SOURCES OF RECRUITMENT
Internal Sources Of Recruitment:
The employees are transferred from one department to another according to their efficiency and experience.
2. PROMOTIONS The employees are promoted from one department to another with more benefits and greater responsibility based on efficiency and experience.
3. Others are Upgrading and Demotion of present employees according to their performance.
4. RETIRED AND RETRENCHED EMPLOYEES
employees may also be recruited once again in case of shortage of qualified personnel or increase in load of work. Recruitment such people save time and costs of the organisations as the people are already aware of the organisational culture and the policies and procedures.
5. The dependents and relatives of Deceased employees and Disabled employees are also done by many companies so that the members of the family do not become dependent on the mercy of others.
External Sources Of Recruitment:
1.PRESS ADVERTISEMENTS Advertisements of the vacancy in newspapers and journals are a widely used source of recruitment. The main advantage of this method is that it has a wide reach.
2. EDUCATIONAL INSTITUTES Various management institutes, engineering colleges, medical Colleges etc. are a good source of recruiting well qualified executives, engineers, medical staff etc. They provide
facilities for campus interviews and placements. This source is known as Campus Recruitment.
3. PLACEMENT AGENCIES Several private consultancy firms perform recruitment functions on behalf of client companies by charging a fee. These agencies are particularly suitable for recruitment of executives and specialists. It is also known as RPO (Recruitment Process Outsourcing)
4. EMPLOYMENT EXCHANGES Government establishes public employment exchanges throughout the country. These exchanges provide job information to job seekers and help employers in identifying suitable candidates.
5. LABOUR CONTRACTORS
Manual workers can be recruited through contractors who maintain close contacts with the sources of such workers. This source is used to recruit labour for construction jobs.
6. UNSOLICITED APPLICANTS
Many job seekers visit the office of well-known companies on their own. Such callers are considered nuisance to the daily work routine of the enterprise. But can help in creating the talent pool or the database of the probable candidates for the organisation.
7. EMPLOYEE REFERRALS / RECOMMENDATIONS
Many organizations have structured system where the current employees of the organization can refer their friends and relatives for some position in their organization. Also, the office bearers of trade unions are often aware of the suitability of candidates. Management can inquire these leaders for suitable jobs. In some organizations these are formal agreements to give priority in recruitment to the candidates recommended by the trade union.
8. RECRUITMENT AT FACTORY GATE
Unskilled workers may be recruited at the factory gate these may be employed whenever a permanent worker is absent. More efficient among these may be recruited to fill permanent vacancies.
FACTORS AFFECTING RECRUITMENT
The recruitment function of the organisations is affected and governed by a mix of various internal and external forces. The internal forces or factors are the factors that can be controlled by the organisation. And the external factors are those factors which cannot be controlled by the organisation. The internal and external forces affecting recruitment function of an organisation are:
Internal Factors Affecting Recruitment
The internal forces i.e. the factors which can be controlled by the organisation are:
The recruitment policy of an organisation specifies the objectives of recruitment and provides a framework for implementation of recruitment programme. It may involve
organizational system to be developed for implementing recruitment programmes and procedures by filling up vacancies with best qualified people.
HUMAN RESOURCE PLANNING
Effective human resource planning helps in determining the gaps present in the existing manpower of the organization. It also helps in determining the number of employees to be recruited and what qualification they must possess.
SIZE OF THE FIRM The size of the firm is an important factor in recruitment process. If the organization is planning to increase its operations and expand its business, it will think of hiring more personnel, which will handle its operations.
COST Recruitment incur cost to the employer, therefore, organizations try to employ that source of recruitment which will bear a lower cost of recruitment to the organization for each candidate. GROWTH AND EXPANSION Organization will employ or think of employing more personnel if it is expanding it‘s operations. External Factors Affecting Recruitment:
The external forces are the forces which cannot be controlled by the organisation. The major external forces are:
SUPPLY AND DEMAND:
The availability of manpower both within and outside the organization is an important determinant in the recruitment process. If the company has a demand for more professionals and there is limited supply in the market for the professionals demanded by the company, then the company will have to depend upon internal sources by providing them special training and development programs.
Employment conditions in the community where the organization is located will influence the recruiting efforts of the organization. If there is surplus of manpower at the time of recruitment, even informal attempts at the time of recruiting like notice boards display of the requisition or announcement in the meeting etc will attract more than enough applicants.
IMAGE / GOODWILL
Image of the employer can work as a potential constraint for recruitment. An organization with positive image and goodwill as an employer finds it easier to attract and retain employees than an organization with negative image. Image of a company is based on what organization does and affected by industry. For example finance was taken up by fresher MBA‘s when many finance companies were coming up.
POLITICAL-SOCIAL- LEGAL ENVIRONMENT
Various government regulations prohibiting discrimination in hiring and employment have direct impact on recruitment practices. For example, Government of India has introduced legislation for reservation in employment for scheduled castes, scheduled tribes, physically handicapped etc. Also, trade unions play important role in recruitment. This restricts management freedom to select those individuals who it believes would be
the best performers. If the candidate can‘t meet criteria stipulated by the union but union regulations can restrict recruitment sources.
One of the factors that influence the availability of applicants is the growth of the economy (whether economy is growing or not and its rate). When the company is not creating new jobs, there is often oversupply of qualified labour which in turn leads to unemployment.
The recruitment policies of the competitors also effect the recruitment function of the organisations. To face the competition, many a times the organisations have to change their recruitment policies according to the policies being followed by the competitors.
The selection procedure is concerned with securing relevant information about an applicant. The objective of selection process is to determine whether an applicant meets the qualification for a specific job and to choose the applicant who is most likely to perform well in that job. Selection is a long process, commencing from the preliminary interview of the applicants and ending with contract of the employment. Selection process is in many steps, and at each step candidates are rejected. The complexity of a process usually increases with the level and responsibility of the position to be filled. According to Yoder ―an effective selection program is a non-random process because those selected have been chosen on the basis of the assumption that they are more likely to be better employees than those who have been rejected.‖
While formulating a selection policy, due consideration should be given to organisational requirements as well as technical and professional dimensions of selection procedures. Factors considered include organisational goals , technological issues , cost factors, extent of formality etc. In other words, an effective policy must assert ―why‖ and ―what‖ aspects of the organizational objectives.
Essentials of selection procedure
The selection procedure adopted by an organisation is mostly tailor made to meet its particular needs. The thoroughness of the procedure depends upon three factors : 1. The nature of selection: The candidate selected should be right and fit for the job, faulty selection will lead to losses in the form of training expenditure, expenditure of selection process , time lost in process . 2. The policy of the company and the attitude of the management 3. The length of probationary period. Then longer the period , the greater the uncertainty in the minds of the selected candidate
STEPS IN SELECTION PROCESS
There is no shortcut to an accurate evaluation of a candidate. The hiring procedure is therefore generally long and complicated. The following is a popular procedure though it may be modified to suit individual situation: 1. Reception or preliminary interview or screening. 2. Application blank - a fact - finder which helps one in learning about an applicant‘s background and life history. 3. A well conducted interview to explore the facts and get at the attitude of the applicant.
4. A physical examination - health and stamina are vital factors in success. 5. Physiological testing to explore the surface area and get an objective look at a candidate‘s suitability for a job. 6. A reference check. 7. Final selection approval by manager ; and communication of the decision to the candidate Recruitment vs selection Both recruitment and selection are the two phases of the employment process. The differences between the two are: Recruitment is the process of searching the candidates for employment and stimulating them to apply for jobs in the organisation WHEREAS selection involves the series of steps by which the candidates are screened for choosing the most suitable persons for vacant posts. The basic purpose of recruitments is to create a talent pool of candidates to enable the selection of best candidates for the organisation, by attracting more and more employees to apply in the organisation WHEREAS the basic purpose of selection process is to choose the right candidate tofill the various positions in the organisation. Recruitment is a positive process i.e. encouraging more and more employees to apply WHEREAS selection is a negative process as it involves rejection of the unsuitable candidates. Recruitment is concerned with tapping the sources of human resources WHEREAS selectionis concerned with selecting the most suitable candidate through various interviews and tests. There is no contract of recruitment established in recruitment WHEREAS selection results in a contract of service between the employer and the selected employee.
E-RECRUITMENT The buzzword and the latest trends in recruitment is the ―E-Recruitment‖. Also known as ―Online recruitment‖, it is the use of technology or the web based tools to assist the recruitment process. The tool can be either a job website like naukri.com, the organisation‘s corporate web site or its own intranet. Many big and small organizations are using Internet as a source of recruitment. They advertise job vacancies through worldwide web. The job seekers send their applications or curriculum vitae (CV) through an e-mail using the Internet. Alternatively job seekers place their CV‘s in worldwide web,
which can be drawn by prospective employees depending upon their requirements. The internet penetration in India is increasing and has tremendous potential. According to a study by NASSCOM – ―Jobs is among the top reasons why new users will come on to the internet, besides e-mail.‖ There are more than 18 million resume‘s floating online across the world. The two kinds of e- recruitment that an organisation can use is –
Job portals – i.e. posting the position with the job description and the job specification on the job portal and also searching for the suitable resmes posted on the site corresponding to the opening in the organisation Creating a complete online recruitment/application section in the companies own website. - Companies have added an application system to its website, where the ‗passive‘ job seekers can submit their resumes into the database of the organisation for consideration in future, as and when the roles become available.
Resume Scanners: Resume scanner is one major benefit provided by the job portals to the organisations. It enables the employees to screen and filter the resumes through pre-defined criteria‘s and requirements (skills, qualifications, experience, payroll etc.) of the job.
Job sites provide a 24*7 access to the database of the resumes to the employees facilitating the just-in-time hiring by the organisations. Also, the jobs can be posted on the site almost immediately and is also cheaper than advertising in the employment newspapers. Sometimes companies can get valuable references through the ―passers-by‖ applicants. Online recruitment helps the organisations to automate the recruitment process, save their time and costs on recruitments.
Online recruitment techniques: Giving a detailed job description and job specifications in the job postings to attract candidates with the right skill sets and qualifications at the first stage.
E-recruitment should be incorporated into the overall recruitment strategy of the organisation. A well defined and structured applicant tracking system should be integrated and the system should have a back-end support. Along with the back-office support a comprehensive website to receive and process job applications (through direct or online advertising) should be developed. Therefore, to conclude, it can be said that e-recruitment is the ―Evolving face of recruitment.‖
Recruitment refers to the process of screening, and selecting qualified people for a job at an organization or firm, or for a vacancy in a volunteer-based organization or community group. While generalist managers or administrators can undertake some components of the recruitment process, mid- and large-size organizations and companies often retain professional recruiters or outsource some of the process to recruitment agencies. External recruitment is the process of attracting and selecting employees from outside the organization. The recruitment industry has four main types of agencies: employment agencies, recruitment websites and job search engines, "headhunters" for executive and professional recruitment, and in-house recruitment. The stages in recruitment include sourcing candidates by advertising or other methods, and screening and selecting potential candidates using tests or interviews Traditional Agency Also known as a employment agencies, recruitment agencies have historically had a physical location. A candidate visits a local branch for a short interview and an assessment before being taken onto the agency‘s books. Recruitment consultants then work to match their pool of candidates to their clients' open positions. Suitable candidates
are short-listed and put forward for an interview with potential employers on a temporary ("temp") or permanent ("perm") basis. Compensation to agencies take several forms, the most popular:
A contingency fee paid by the company when a recommended candidate accepts a job with the client company (typically 20%-30% based and calculated of the candidates first-year base salary), which usually has some form of guarantee (3090 days standard), should the candidate fail to perform and is terminated within a set period of time (refundable fully or prorated)
An advance payment that serves as a retainer, also paid by the company, nonrefundable paid in full depending on outcome and success (eg. 30% up front, 30% in 90 days and the remainder once a search is completed). This form of compensation is generally reserved for high level executive search/headhunters
Hourly Compensation for temporary workers and projects. A pre-negotiated hourly fee, in which the agency is paid and pays the applicant as a consultant.
REVIEW AND RESEARCH
Tata Consultancy Services Limited (TCS) is the world-leading information technology consulting, services, and business process outsourcing organization that envisioned and pioneered the adoption of the flexible global business practices that today enable companies to operate more efficiently and produce more value. They commenced operations in 1968, when the IT services industry didn‘t exist as it does today. Now, with a presence in 34 countries across 6 continents, & a comprehensive range of services across diverse industries, they are one of the world's leading Information Technology companies. Seven of the Fortune Top 10 companies are among our valued customers. They are part of one of Asia's largest conglomerates - the TATA Group - which, with its interests in Energy, Telecommunications, Financial Services, Chemicals, Engineering & Materials, provides us with a grounded understanding of specific business challenges facing global companies. As we move into an era of e-business where IT professionals will interview employers so stringently that 40 percent employers will miss recruitment goals (source: Gartner Group), the role of HR assumes unthinkable proportions and is subject to mammoth challenges. With this sensitive breed of IT professionals, how has TCS grown to and sustained at the number one position is a question which market watchers have asked themselves a thousand times. There is but one answer - passion for excellence in the workforce practices. TCS has developed an unbreakable bond with sound HR practices in an environment that defies traditional roles and responsibilities.
Data relating to performance assessment of employees arc recorded, stored. and used for seven purposes. The main purposes of employee assessment are: 1. To effect promotions based on competence and performance. 2. To confirm the services of probationary employees upon their completing the probationary period satisfactorily.
3. To assess the training and development needs of employees. 4. To decide upon a pay raise where (as in the unorganized sector) regular pay scales have not been fixed. 5. To let the employees know where they stand insofar as their performance is concerned and to assist them with constructive criticism and guidance for the purpose of their development. 6. To improve communication. Performance appraisal provides a format for dialogue between the superior and the subordinate, and improves understanding of personal goals and concerns. This can also have the effect of increasing the trust between the rater and the ratee. 7. Finally, performance appraisal can be used to determine whether HR programmes such a selection, training, and transfers have been effective or not. Training and Learning
TCS sees the training and education of the people as a continuous value-adding process. This approach hones, improves and enhances their skills — and makes the organization stronger. The TCS training centre in Thiruvananthapuram TCS invests about 4 per cent of its annual revenues in training, a shining example of which can be seen at the state-ofthe-art training centre in Thiruvananthapuram in the south Indian state of Kerala. Consider TCS ‗initial learning programme' (ILP), which is for all the recruits from engineering colleges. This is a specially designed, 41/47 day training TCSse at the Thiruvananthapuram facility. The ILP is conducted with the objective of transforming engineers from diverse disciplines into software professionals. Then there are the 'continuing education programs' (CEPs), which cover over 300 topics and can be delivered over a variety of channels: classrooms, computers, audio / video, contact sessions, seminars, conferences and workshops. TCS dedicated training centre in Thiruvananthapuram, established in 1998, sprawls over 58,000 square feet. The centre has 18 classrooms, a library, an auditorium, a conference hall, discussion rooms, and faculty and administrative areas. The facility has about 300 personal computers connected to servers. TCS has 10 other centers in India fully equipped to conduct any type of training programme.
1.6.1. Driven By Knowledge In October 2005, Tata Consultancy Services (TCS) was adjudged one of 14 winners in Asia‘s Most Admired Knowledge Enterprises (MAKE) Study -- 2005. The award was given in recognition of best practices in Knowledge Management (KM), by a panel of Asian Fortune 500 senior executives and renowned KM experts. The organizations were rated on eight knowledge performance parameters.
Broadly, performance appraisal serves four objectives-
(i) (ii) (iii) (iv)
developmental uses, administrative uses/decisions, organizational maintenance/objectives, and documentation purposes
Table below outlines these and specific uses more clearly:-
Multiple Purposes of Performance Assessment
Identification of individual needs Performance feedback Developmental Uses Determining transfers and job assignments Identification of individual strengths ad development needs
Promotion Retention or termination Administrative Uses/Decisions Recognition of individual performance Lay-offs Identification of poor performers
HR planning Determining organization training needs Evaluation Organizational Maintenance/ Objectives achievement Information for goal identification Evaluation of HR systems Reinforcement development needs of organizational of organizational goal
Criteria for validation research Documentation for HR decisions Helping to meet legal requirements Documentation
PERFORMANCE APPRAISAL AND COMPETITIVE ADVANTAGE IN TCS
The objectives of performance appraisal, point out the purpose which such an exercise seeks to meet. What needs emphasis is that performance evaluation contributes to TCS‘s competitive strength. Besides encouraging high levels of performance, the evaluation system helps identify employees with potential, reward performance equitably and determine employee's need for training. Specifically, performance appraisal has helped the TCS gain competitive edge in the following ways : According to R.D. Gatewood and H.S. Field, employee selection is the "process of collecting and evaluating information about an individual in order to extend an offer of employment." Employee selection is part of the overall staffing process of the organization, which also includes human resource (HR) planning, recruitment, and retention activities. By doing human resource planning, the organization projects its likely demand for personnel with particular knowledge, skills, and abilities (KSAs), and compares that to the anticipated availability of such personnel in the internal or external labor markets. During the recruitment phase of staffing, the organization attempts to establish contact with potential job applicants by job postings within the organization, advertising to attract external applicants, employee referrals, and many other methods, depending on the type of organization and the nature of the job in question. Employee selection begins when a pool of applicants is generated by the organization's recruitment efforts. During the employee selection process, a firm decides which of the recruited candidates will be offered a position. Effective employee selection is a critical component of a successful organization. How employees perform their jobs is a major factor in determining how successful an organization will be. Job performance is essentially determined by the ability of an individual to do a particular job and the effort the individual is willing to put forth in performing the job. Through effective selection, the organization can maximize the probability that its new employees will have the necessary KSAs to do the jobs they were hired to do. Thus, employee selection is one of the two major ways (along with orientation and training) to make sure that new employees have the abilities required to
do their jobs. It also provides the base for other HR practices—such as effective job design, goal setting, and compensation—that motivate workers to exert the effort needed to do their jobs effectively, according to Gatewood and Field. Job applicants differ along many dimensions, such as educational and work experience, personality characteristics, and innate ability and motivation levels. The logic of employee selection begins with the assumption that at least some of these individual differences are relevant to a person's suitability for a particular job. Thus, in employee selection the organization must (1) determine the relevant individual differences (KSAs) needed to do the job and (2) identify and utilize selection methods that will reliably and validly assess the extent to which job applicants possess the needed KSAs. The organization must achieve these tasks in a way that does not illegally discriminate against any job applicants on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, national origin, disability, or veteran's status. AN OVERVIEW OF THE
SELECTION PROCESS Employee selection is itself a process consisting of several important stages, as shown in Exhibit 1. Since the organization must determine the individual KSAs needed to perform a job, the selection process begins with job analysis, which is the systematic study of the content of jobs in an organization. Effective job analysis tells the organization what people occupying particular jobs "do" in the course of performing their jobs. It also helps the organization determine the major duties and responsibilities of the job, as well as aspects of the job that are of minor or tangential importance to job performance. The job analysis often results in a document called the job description, which is a comprehensive document that details the duties, responsibilities, and tasks that make up a job. Because job analysis can be complex, timeconsuming, and expensive, standardized job descriptions have been developed that can be adapted to thousands of jobs in organizations across the world. Two examples of such databases are the U.S. government's Standard Occupational Classification (SOC), which has information on at least 821 occupations, and the Occupational Information Network, which is also known as O*NET. O*NET provides job descriptions for thousands of jobs.
An understanding of the content of a job assists an organization in specifying the knowledge, skills, and abilities needed to do the job. These KSAs can be expressed in terms of a job specification, which is an
Exhibit Selection Process Source: Adapted from Gatewood and Field, 2001.
The systematic study of job content in order to determine the major duties and responsibilities of the job. Allows the 1. Job Analysis organization to determine the important dimensions of job performance. The major duties and responsibilities of a job are often detailed in the job description. Drawing upon the information obtained through job 2. The Identification analysis or from secondary sources such as O*NET, the of KSAs or organization identifies the knowledge, skills, and abilities necessary to perform the job. The job requirements are often detailed in a document called the job specification. 3. The Identification Once the organization knows the KSAs needed by job of Selection Methods applicants, it must be able to determine the degree to which to Assess KSAs job applicants possess them. The organization must Once the
organization knows the KSAs needed by job applicants, it must be able to determine the degree to which job applicants possess them. The organization must Selection methods include, but are not limited to, reference and background checks, interviews, cognitive testing, personality testing, aptitude testing, drug testing, and assessment centers. The organization should be sure that the selection methods 4. The Assessment of they use are reliable and valid. In terms of validity, selection the Reliability and methods should actually assess the knowledge, skill, or
Validity of Selection ability they purport to measure and should distinguish Methods between job applicants who will be successful on the job and those who will not. The organization should use its selection methods to make selection decisions. Typically, the organization will first try 5. The Use of Selection to determine which applicants possess the minimum KSAs Methods to Process required. Once unqualified applicants are screened, other Job Applicants selection methods are used to make distinctions among the remaining job candidates and to decide which applicants will receive offers. organizational document that details what is required to successfully perform a given job. The necessary KSAs are called job requirements, which simply means they are thought to be necessary to perform the job. Job requirements are expressed in terms of desired education or training, work experience, specific aptitudes or abilities, and in many other ways. Care must be taken to ensure that the job requirements are based on the actual duties and responsibilities of the job and that they do not include irrelevant requirements that may discriminate against some applicants. For example, many organizations have revamped their job descriptions and specifications in the years since the passage of the Americans with Disabilities Act to ensure that these documents contain only job-relevant content. Once the necessary KSAs are identified the organization must either develop a selection method to accurately assess whether applicants possess the needed KSAs, or adapt
selection methods developed by others. There are many selection methods available to organizations. The most common is the job interview, but organizations also use reference and background checking, personality testing, cognitive ability testing, aptitude testing, assessment centers, drug tests, and many other methods to try and accurately assess the extent to which applicants possess the required KSAs and whether they have unfavorable characteristics that would prevent them from successfully performing the job. For both legal and practical reasons, it is important that the selection methods used are relevant to the job in question and that the methods are as accurate as possible in the information they provide. Selection methods cannot be accurate unless they possess reliability and validity. VALIDITY OF SELECTION METHODS Validity refers to the quality of a measure that exists when the measure assesses a construct. In the selection context, validity refers to the appropriateness, meaningfulness, and usefulness of the inferences made about applicants during the selection process. It is concerned with the issue of whether applicants will actually perform the job as well as expected based on the inferences made during the selection process. The closer the applicants' actual job performances match their expected performances, the greater the validity of the selection process. ACHIEVING VALIDITY The organization must have a clear notion of the job requirements and use selection methods that reliably and accurately measure these qualifications. A list of typical job requirements is shown in Exhibit 2. Some qualifications—such as technical KSAs and nontechnical skills—are job-specific, meaning that each job has a unique set. The other qualifications listed in the exhibit are universal in that nearly all employers consider these qualities important, regardless of the job. For instance, employers want all their employees to be motivated and have good work habits. The job specification derived from job analysis should describe the KSAs needed to perform each important task of a job. By basing qualifications on job analysis information, a company ensures that the qualities being assessed are important for the job. Job analyses are also needed for legal reasons. In discrimination suits, courts often judge the job-relatedness of a selection practice on whether or not the selection criteria was
based on job analysis information. For instance, if someone lodges a complaint that a particular test discriminates against a protected group, the court would (1) determine whether the qualities measured by the test were selected on the basis of job analysis findings and (2) scrutinize the job analysis study itself to determine whether it had been properly conducted. SELECTION METHODS The attainment of validity depends heavily on the appropriateness of the particular selection technique used. A firm should use selection methods that reliably and accurately measure the needed qualifications. The reliability of a measure refers to its consistency. It is defined as "the degree of self-consistency among the scores earned by an individual." Reliable evaluations are consistent across both people and time. Reliability is maximized when two people evaluating the same candidate provide the same ratings, and when the ratings of a candidate taken at two different times are the same. When selection scores are unreliable, their validity is diminished. Some of the factors affecting the reliability of selection 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.
ASSESSING DOCUMENTING VALIDITY
Three strategies can be used to determine the validity of a selection method. The following section lists and discusses these strategies: 1. Content-oriented strategy: Demonstrates that the company followed proper procedures in the development and use of its selection devices. 2. Criterion-related strategy: Provides statistical evidence showing a relationship between applicant selection scores and subsequent job performance levels. 3. Validity generalization strategy: Demonstrates that other companies have already established the validity of the selection practice. When using a content-oriented strategy to document validity, a firm gathers evidence that it followed appropriate procedures in developing its selection program. The evidence should show that the selection devices were properly designed and were accurate measures of the worker requirements. Most importantly, the employer must demonstrate that the selection devices were chosen on the basis of an acceptable job analysis and that they measured a representative sample of the KSAs identified. The sole use of a contentoriented strategy for demonstrating validity is most appropriate for selection devices that directly assess job behavior. For example, one could safely infer that a candidate who performs well on a properly-developed typing test would type well on the job because the test directly measures the actual behavior required on the job. However, when the connection between the selection device and job behavior is less direct, content-oriented evidence alone is insufficient. Consider, for example, an item found on a civil service exam for police officers: "In the Northern Hemisphere, what direction does water circulate when going down the drain?" The aim of the question is to measure mental alertness, which is an important trait for good police officers. However, can one really be sure that the ability to answer this question is a measure of mental alertness? Perhaps, but the inferential leap is a rather large one.
When employers must make such large inferential leaps, a content-oriented strategy, by itself, is insufficient to document validity; some other strategy is needed. This is where a criterion-related strategy comes into play. When a firm uses this strategy, it attempts to demonstrate statistically that someone who does well on a selection instrument is more likely to be a good job performer than someone who does poorly on the selection instrument. To gather criterion-related evidence, the HR professional needs to collect two pieces of information on each person: a predictor score and a criterion score.
Predictor scores represent how well the individual fared during the selection process as indicated by a test score, an interview rating, or an overall selection score.
Criterion scores represent the job performance level achieved by the individual and are usually based on supervisor evaluations.
Validity is calculated by statistically correlating predictor scores with criterion scores (statistical formulas for computing correlation can be found in most introductory statistical texts). This correlation coefficient (designated as r ) is called a validity coefficient. To be considered valid, r must be statistically significant and its magnitude must be sufficiently large to be of practical value. When a suitable correlation is obtained ( r > 0.3, as a rule of thumb), the firm can conclude that the inferences made during the selection process have been confirmed. That is, it can conclude that, in general, applicants who score well during selection turn out to be good performers, while those who do not score as well become poor performers. A criterion-related validation study may be conducted in one of two ways: a predictive validation study or a concurrent validation study. The two approaches differ primarily in terms of the individuals assessed. In a predictive validation study, information is gathered on actual job applicants; in a concurrent study, current employees are used. The steps to each approach are shown in Exhibit 3. Concurrent studies are more commonly used than predictive ones because they can be conducted more quickly; the assessed individuals are already on the job and performance measures can thus be more quickly obtained. (In a predictive study, the criterion scores cannot be gathered until the applicants have been hired and have been on the job for several months.) Although concurrent validity studies have certain disadvantages
compared to predictive ones, available research indicates that the two types of studies seem to yield approximately the same results. Up to this point, our discussion has assumed that an employer needs to validate each of its selection practices. But what if it is using a selection device that has been used and properly validated by other companies? Can it rely on that validity evidence and thus avoid having to conduct its own study? The answer is yes. It can do so by using a validity generalization strategy. Validity generalization is established by demonstrating that a selection device has been consistently found to be valid in many other similar settings. An impressive amount of evidence points to the validity generalization of many specific devices. For example, some mental aptitude tests have been found to be valid predictors for nearly all jobs and thus can be justified without performing a new validation study to demonstrate job relatedness. To use validity generalization evidence, an organization must present the following data:
Studies summarizing a selection measure's validity for similar jobs in other settings.
Data showing the similarity between the jobs for which the validity evidence is reported and the job in the new employment setting.
Data showing the similarity between the selection measures in the other studies composing the validity evidence and those measures to be used in the new employment setting.
MAKING A FINAL SELECTION The extensiveness and complexity of selection processes vary greatly depending on factors such as the nature of the job, the number of applicants for each opening, and the size of the organization. A typical way of applying selection methods to a large number of applicants for a job requiring relatively high levels of KSAs would be the following: 1. Use application blanks, resumes, and short interviews to determine which job applicants meet the minimum requirements for the job. If the number of applicants is not too large, the information provided by applicants can be verified with reference and/or background checks.
2. Use extensive interviews and appropriate testing to determine which of the minimally qualified job candidates have the highest degree of the KSAs required by the job. 3. Make contingent offers to one or more job finalists as identified by Step 2. Job offers may be contingent upon successful completion of a drug test or other forms of back-ground checks. General medical exams can only be given after a contingent offer is made. One viable strategy for arriving at a sound selection decision is to first evaluate the applicants on each individual attribute needed for the job. That is, at the conclusion of the selection process, each applicant could be rated on a scale (say, from one to five) for each important attribute based on all the information collected during the selection process. For example, one could arrive at an overall rating of a candidate's dependability by combining information derived from references, interviews, and tests that relate to this attribute.
NEW DEVELOPMENTS IN THE RESEARCH AREA
Decision-making is often facilitated by statistically combining applicants' ratings on different attributes to form a ranking or rating of each applicant. The applicant with the highest score is then selected. This approach is appropriate when a compensatory model is operating, that is, when it is correct to assume that a high score on one attribute can compensate for a low score on another. For example, a baseball player may compensate for a lack of power in hitting by being a fast base runner. In some selection situations, however, proficiency in one area cannot compensate for deficiencies in another. When such a non-compensatory model is operating, a deficiency in any one area would eliminate the candidate from further consideration. Lack of honesty or an inability to get along with people, for example, may serve to eliminate candidates for some jobs, regardless of their other abilities. When a non-compensatory model is operating, the "successive hurdles" approach may be most appropriate. Under this approach, candidates are eliminated during various stages of the selection process as their non-compensable deficiencies are discovered. For example, some applicants may be eliminated during the first stage if they do not meet the minimum education and experience requirements. Additional candidates may be eliminated at later points after failing a drug test or honesty test or after demonstrating poor interpersonal skills during an interview. The use of successive hurdles lowers selection costs by requiring fewer assessments to be made as the list of viable candidates shrinks.
TOPICS FOR FURTHER RESEARCH
Some of the topics for further research would be RPO is the biggest source of recruitment. Recruitment and retention is the economic downturn.
Have you ever been interested in (or tried to fill) a job that sounded really interesting... until you found out who the employer was? What about a so-so job that wasn't appealing at all until you found out that it was at a really cool company? This perception of a company as an interesting, oppressive, or boring place to work can drastically affect that company's ability to attract and retain top-quality talent. I call it an "employer brand" and encourage all my clients to consider it as a part of their overall recruiting strategy. So what does this fancy "employer brand" term mean, anyway? It's really quite simpleit's the collection of perceptions your target market- candidates who fit your current and future open positions- have about you as an employer. Much like your product's brand, these perceptions will influence your target market's "buying" decisions whether they are accurate or not. Employers should ask themselves how they are perceived in the marketplace- are they known for generosity of benefits? Interesting and challenging work? Flexible work-life policies? Ruthless cost-cutting? Micromanagement? Conformity? It's these perceptions that can make your ideal candidate, the one who can pick-and-choose among offers of employment, decide whether or not to apply for an open position with your firm at all. If you have a negative employer brand, you may never see the resumes of the best and brightest. To complicate matters, your product brand can heavily influence your employer brand. Consider the following consumer brands: Wal-Mart, Apple, Starbucks, Amazon, Microsoft, Google, Pillsbury
What's your perception about working for each of these companies? Are you someone who wouldn't want to work for Wal-Mart because you've heard how ruthlessly they manage their own costs? Or are you someone who wants to work for a company with such undisputed expertise at efficiency? What about Apple? Do you love your iPod and want to work for a company that puts that kind of attention to detail into its products? Or do you not want to work for a company that couldn't get its computing platform past a 5percent market share? Your perception of a company's core product or service will drastically affect your interest in working there. So what is a company with a bad employer brand to do? I hope I've already convinced you to think of it as if you were thinking of your product brand. What's the perception you want people to have of your company? How will you reach your target market? What will you tell them? I recommend that companies engaging the services of PR and marketing professionals, whether internally or through third-party firms, request that their PR and marketing plans include a component that specifically supports employer branding. We've already established that your product brand affects your employer brand, so why shouldn't they be promoted by the same people? If a company takes care to ensure that it is perceived as a good place to work for its target candidates, it will notice an upswing in the quality (and probably number) of resumes received. Its recruiters will be more successful in enticing qualified candidates to make a move. Passive candidates' ears will perk up upon hearing of an opportunity at the firm. Better candidates usually means better quality of hires. Better hires mean better work produced. Better work is a better product, and a better product means a better brand. It's a cycle, but one you'd like to get into.
Human capital, mercifully, is the only form of capital that corporate America cannot buy or sell. As a result, it is the only form of capital that does not have well-defined (if admittedly grossly imperfect) accounting procedures and reporting rules associated with it. In part because of this, firms' procedures for assessing and valuing the competencies of prospective and incumbent employees range from primitive to nonexistent. Another factor contributing to the sorry state of assessing workplace competence is that in times of rapid change (such as we are currently in), employers' concepts of what constitutes competence also change rapidly; these concepts, however, are rarely well defined and articulated. Still another factor complicating the difficulty of assessing and valuing workers' competencies is that the methods by which these competencies can be created are expanding faster than is our collective capacity for evaluating the effectiveness of these methods. Finally, human beings are extraordinarily complex; participating in wellhoned, highly effective learning experiences is no guarantee that any given participant actually learns anything at all. In sum, there are many reasons why assessing competence is inherently difficult and becoming even more difficult with the passage of time. There are also reasons to believe that the imperative to tackle this difficult task is becoming more pressing. This paper examines evidence from a variety of perspectives that are relevant to understanding the changing nature of workplace competence. Four perspectives are considered: the operation of the labor market, surveys of what employers say, the market for employer-provided training, and the stock market.
Over the past 25 years, 2 striking trends have dominated all others in the labor market. First, real (i.e., inflation-adjusted) wages have fallen for the majority of workers. Second, dispersion of wages—both within and between groups—has increased. Historically, real wages have been driven by productivity changes.1 The period since 1973 has been no exception. Between 1961 and 1972, productivity grew at an annual rate of slightly more than 3 percent; between 1973 and 1994 the productivity growth rate fell by more than 60 percent, to an annual rate of less than 1.2 percent.2 Consequently, understanding the productivity slowdown is tantamount to understanding the real wage decline. Unfortunately, while a wide variety of explanations have been put forth, the slowdown in U.S. productivity remains largely unexplained. What is clear, however, is that widely heralded changes in technology have not yet manifested themselves either in growth of productivity or wages. The combined effect of the increase in wage dispersion, along with the decline in real wages has been most pronounced for males. The real hourly earnings of men with less than a high school education, for example, fell by 28 percent between 1973 and 1995. This decline has been most pronounced for young men.
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