Human Resource Selection Process


Human resource department has the obligation of ensuring that an organization gets the right persons for the job. The selection of organization employees is a critical aspect of the organization since it determines the success of the organization. Previous studies assert that more than 80% of turnovers are blamed o mistakes during the employee selection and hiring process.  Any error during the selection process means that the organization hires the wrong people thus making it difficult to realize the objectives (Harris, 2008).  It is for this reason that human resource must ensure that the best selection process is utilized for perpetual success of the organization. Interviews are regarded as the best selection tools used in the hiring process. In this chapter, we will discuss at length on the process of hiring the best candidate for a job. The interview process will also be greatly considered.

Selection process

As earlier stated, having the right person for the right job is crucial to the success of an organization. It is the objective of the human resource department to ensure that only the successful applicant is selected for the right job. The validity and the reliability of the successful candidate mean a lot to the success of the organization (Valentine, Mathis & Jackson, n.d.). It is also important for the selection device to maintain high levels of consistency.  For the right candidate to be selected, the human resource is expected to follow certain critical steps involved in the hiring process as discussed below;

Step 1: identify vacancy and evaluate need

This forms the basis for the selection process. Human resource department must identify a vacant position that needs to be filled. Proper planning and evaluation of the need is critical in hiring the right person for the job. It can either be a newly created position or a replacement which should be handled with utmost concern.

Step 2: develop position description

This is a critical stage in the selection process. It is used in preparing the interview questions. It forms the basis for determining the best candidate from a pool of applicants. The duties and responsibilities associated with the vacancy should be outlined at this stage. It is also at this point that critical issues such as the purpose and minimum requirements must also be fully described at this stage.

Step 3: develop a recruitment plan

This is a step whereby the human resource is expected to construct a documented recruitment plan. This plan should give a roadmap of attracting and hiring the best qualified for the vacant position. It is the objective of the human resource team to ensure that the hiring process is conscious of he set guidelines and is in line with the organizations hiring policies.

Step 4: Select search committee

This is a step where the selection committee is formed. In order to hire the best candidates to fill the vacant positions, it is wise for the HR department to ensure that interviews are conducted by more than one person. This will reduce biases and skewed opinions during the selection process. The select committee must be of diverse grounds and representative of the cross section of the staff (Valentine, Mathis & Jackson, n.d.). It is the obligation of this committee to ensure equal representation of all the people including women and persons with disability. It should ensure that every person is given an equal opportunity throughout the selection process. It is also important for the human resource department to ensure that there is a change of committees in instances where there is frequent recruitment to minimize chances of collective bias.

Step 5: post position and implement recruitment plan

After position description, then it is the obligation of the human resource to advertise the vacant position for the willing applicants to apply. While posting, it is essential that the HR give a precise description of the job requirement to ensure only the right pool of applications are obtained (Pankl, 2010). Failure to be clear and concise may have an adverse impact on the pool of applicants.

Step 6: review applicants and develop a shortlist

After posting of the vacant job, then the candidates who feel that they match the requirements will obviously apply for the positions posted. It is now the obligation of the recruiting agencies to review all the applications to come up with a list of shortlisted candidates. It is the prerogative of the select committee to ensure that they review all the applications void of any biases. At this stage, essential information such as availability, position requirements, and salary requirements should be gathered to ascertain the proficiency of the candidates for the posts they have applied for (Randhawa, 2007).  The screening process must be void of biases to ensure that the hiring process is valid and reliable.

Comments from the select committee are used to develop a shortlist. The shortlist supposed to contain a list of applicants with the minimum requirements for the position posted. It is important to determine the specific requirements that are essential for the effective hiring process. After short listing, the shortlisted candidates are notified and invited for an interview.

Step 7: Conduct interview

This is the most important aspect of the selection process. The interview offers an opportunity for the employers and the employees to interact and learns more about each other. It is also at this step that the information provided during the application process can be validated by the involved parties (Harris, 2008).  Nevertheless, it is important for the recruitment team to ensure that essential steps are followed during the interview process.

Preparing for the interview

The interview process should begin immediately after the approval of the shortlist by the recruiting agency. However, it is essential for the interviewer to prepare adequately for the meeting since it offers the opportunity to evaluate skills and competencies required in a particular position. It also involves validation of the information given during the application process such as the CVs, testimonials, and cover letters. The interviewer is expected to review the applicant’s resume and note any area of interest that may require follow-up (Tsui & Lai, 2009). It is recommended that the interviewer to choose one or two questions from the minimal required skills and competency to develop the interview questions.

During the preparation, the select committee must design the format of the interview and the order of questions. It is also important t for the committee to determine who will ask which question to avoid contradiction.  The interview committee must also be made aware of the interview time and schedule to ensure timely interview session.

Interview Questions

The choice of interview questions is an essential aspect of the interview process. The questions must ensure that they seek relevant information regarding the role of the advertised post. Specific skills and competencies regarding the job description should form the basis of the research questions. Interview questions are not matching the subject matter should not be included in the list of interview questions (Harris, 2008).  It is also recommendable to use behavioral, and competency questions in the interview process.

After the interview

After the interview, the committee members are expected to forward their findings to the recruiting agency. All the interview comments and notes regarding the performance of all the candidates should be forwarded to the manager for evaluation. The committee must ensure that they only include information that is vital to requirements of the position (Pankl, 2010). Information regarding skills and competencies of the applicants should be fairly analyzed and presented to the manager for further analysis. The analysis will lay the basis upon which the right person for the job will be selected.

Special notes

It is important for the interviewer to understand that the interview process is at times very stressful to the applicants. On this note, they should realize that the more at ease the interviewee is, the better you can identify their actual attributes.  It is, therefore, the obligation of the select committee to ensure that all the participants of an interview process are at ease. It is essential to try as much as possible to provide a conducive environment for interaction between the interviewer and interviewee (Moreland, Parente-Neubert & Simon-Walters, 2014).  It is important that the interviewer avoid illegal questions likely to intimidate the potential employees.

It is also worth noting that despite the extensive use of interviews in the selection process, there is no evidence that it is the most reliable and valid selection process. This is because the selection process fails to assess accurately the applicants’ ability to work, skills, and relevant experience. Another limitation associated with interviews is the influence of other non-job related factors such as clothing, color, gender, and other physicality that may circumvent interview results.  In extreme cases, biases and corruption play a significant role in determining the interview results. The presence of such pitfalls in this technique makes it advisable to choose supplementary selection techniques to enhance validity and reliability of the selection process.

Step 8: hire, select

After completion of the interview process, the committee is required to meet and discuss the interviewees. It is at this point that the members will assess to what extent the applicants met the selection criteria. This step requires that the committee members to be as objective as possible free of any bias. It is important for the select team to ensure that only the qualified candidates are selected to fill the vacant position. During the hiring process, it is important for the select committee to carry out reference checks from previous employers.

Despite the competence and skills availability, it is also important to understand the past performance of the employees. It also gives an opportunity to understand the behaviors and attitude of the prospective employee from the previous work experience.  It is important to make such reference checks before making an employment offer (Moreland, Parente-Neubert & Simon-Walters, 2014). A mistake during the selection process is very costly in terms of money, time and energy, and it is, therefore, essential for the hiring team to ensure that such mistakes are avoided at all costs.


Harris, M. (2008). Handbook of research in international human resource management. New York, NY: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates.

Moreland, T., Parente-Neubert, G., & Simon-Walters, J. (2014). PHR/SPHR professional in human resources certification practice exams. New York: McGraw-Hill Education.

Pankl, E. (2010). Recruitment, development and retention of information professionals. Hershey, PA: Business Science Reference.

Randhawa, G. (2007). Human resource management. New Delhi: Atlantic Publishers & Distributors.

Tsui, A., & Lai, K. (2009). Professional practices of human resource management in Hong Kong. Aberdeen, Hong Kong: Hong Kong University Press.

Valentine, S., Mathis, R., & Jackson, J. Human resource management.

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