Selection and Assessment

An Introduction to the Various Techniques

Personnel selection and assessment activities are integral parts of organizational life. The contemporary economic climate has seen an ever increasing level of staff turnover and personnel reorganization, and the abolition of the traditional view of 'a job for life'. Consequently, there is more pressure now on organizations and HR managers to fill vacant positions quickly and with the most appropriate individuals. Decisions about hiring and classifying applicants are based on expectations or predictions about their future work behaviors. When a company needs to recruit new staff or make promotion decisions about employees, there are various methods of assessment at its disposal. This article examines different methods of assessment and selection commonly used by organizations today; the interview, psychological tests, assessment centers and biodata.

Whatever selection procedure is used, it should yield the right type of information and lead to correct decisions being made. If a technique is successful it is said to be 'valid'. The validity of an assessment is basically what the procedure measures and how well it does so. Validity of a procedure can be represented as a single figure, indicating the strength of agreement between the average individual's score on an assessment and their later success in the selected field. This success is often called 'success on the criterion'. Research, however, has highlighted a gap that exists between what is recommended by professional HR or management consultants and what actually occurs in many organizations.
  •   The Interview

  •   The Structured Interview

  •   The Psychological Test
  •   Assessment Centers

  •   Biodata