The selection process is a number of specific steps taken to decide which recruits should be hired.

The process involves grouping the applicants into unsuitable and appearing to be suitable candidates, conducting tests on suitable candidates, if needed, interviewing them, contacting for references and eliciting their opinion, getting them medically examined and making final hiring decision. The selection process begins with screening of application and ends with hiring decision and placement.

According to Garry Dessler, “Selection is the process of picking individuals out of the pool of job applications, with requisite qualification and competence to fill jobs in the organisation.”

The following are the important steps which must be passed satisfactorily by an applicant to be selected:- 1. Inviting Application 2. Reception of Applicants 3. Preliminary Employment Interview 4. Employment Tests 5. Interview 6. Investigation of References 7. Physical Examination 8. Final Approval 9. Placement 10. Orientation, Induction or Indoctrination.

Selection Process: Steps Involved in the Selection Process

Steps Involved in the Selection Process – Important Steps which must be Passed by an Applicant to get Selected

The selection process is a number of specific steps taken to decide which recruits should be hired. The process involves grouping the applicants into unsuitable and appearing to be suitable candidates, conducting tests on suitable candidates, if needed, interviewing them, contacting for references and eliciting their opinion, getting them medically examined and making final hiring decision. The selection process begins with screening of application and ends with hiring decision and placement. The purpose is to put square peg in square hold.


The following are the important steps which must be passed satisfactorily by an applicant to be selected:

Step # 1. Inviting Application:

First step in the selection process is inviting applications from prospective candidates. A carefully devised application form is in itself an effective selection device. For this reason, application forms are specially designed for each principal class of jobs to be filled.

The main purpose of application is to obtain information in the applicants own handwriting regarding his suitability for employment. Application form should be as simple as possible and must incorporate questions having bearing on the fitness of the applicant in job.

Step # 2. Reception of Applicants:


On the fixed date of selection, the applicants are required to present themselves in the office of the company. They must be given proper reception.

Step # 3. Preliminary Employment Interview:

The preliminary interview is usually quiet and has its object the elimination of the obviously unqualified candidates. Lack of certain requirements in education, age, experience, etc., might determine unfitness. Hence, it is distinctly directive. It does not probe deeply into the applicant’s special specifications, interests, and experience, etc.

On the other hand, the interview seeks to move rapidly from one indicator to the next, checking them off until one of them eliminates the candidate or he is cleared from further investigation. If an applicant is eliminated in the early part of the selection procedure, the company is saved the expenses and time of processing him through remaining steps of the procedure.

Step # 4. Employment Tests:

Use of tests in selection is now well established in practice. Standardized tests available for this purpose have increased in number and experience has demonstrated that they can be helpful in supplementing interviews and other devices used in selection.


Properly administered and interpreted, they are timesavers and help in improving the accuracy of predicting success on the job. Usually there are seven types of tests commonly used – performance tests, trade tests, intelligence tests, attitude tests, interest test, dexterity test, and personality test.

Step # 5. Interview:

After going through test, the successful candidates are interviewed. Although application blanks and tests provide much valuable information about the candidate, yet they do not provide the complete set of information required of the applicant. In much current practice principal dependence is placed on determinative interviews.

But, however, unplanned, casual interviews at this stage involve many hazards and are likely to be misleading and unreliable. They give only a general impression. Hence, carefully planned or, ‘patterned’ interviews should be conducted. Various outlines and guides are available nowadays to assist in these patterned employment interviews.

Step # 6. Investigation of References:

A request for references is commonly made in the application form. Candidates are required to give at least two or three references so that their previous history, character and behaviour, etc., may be investigated. Available evidence indicates, however, that actual use of these references is not made in most current practice.


And much of the use that is made is ineffective because the confidential nature of such inquiries is not assured. If any dependence is to be placed on the information secured from references special cause must be used in soliciting information and assuring its secrecy.

Step # 7. Physical Examination:

Sometimes in the selection procedure, candidates are required to undergo physical examination. It has at least three basic objectives – first it serves to ascertain the applicant’s physical capabilities. Secondly, it is carried out to protect the company against the unwarranted claims under worker’s compensation laws. Thirdly, it can help to prevent communicable disease entering the organisation.

Step # 8. Final Approval:

When all tests, interviews and physical examination, etc., are passed by a candidate, he becomes eligible for appointment. Sometimes, more candidates are selected, so that a waiting list can be prepared. If the selection is equal to the number of actual vacancies, they are called for training or joining, as a case may be.

Step # 9. Placement and Induction:

It is a controversy over whether placement and induction is the part of selection process or not. But as a matter of fact, it must be there. The new employee must be shown his job, introduced to his fellow employees and supervisors and assisted in making such personnel adjustments as are necessary to his effective performance in the work team.


Plant tours can be arranged for them, printed hand­books that describe the employer, products, rules and regulations, privileges enjoyed by them, etc., can be given to them. If the number of new employees is too large, orientation classes can be arranged for them. But according to need some provision for induction must be there.

Steps Involved in the Selection Process – Step by Step Process: From Preliminary Interview to Placement and Induction

In human resource planning, we identified our personnel needs. Once these needs were established a job analysis was conducted, which clarified the characteristics of jobs being done and the individual qualities necessary to do these jobs successfully. This information was then used to recruit a pool of qualified applicants. Effective selection decisions are those where the candidate was predicted to be successful and later did prove to be a successful performer on job.

Selection is the process of discovering the qualifications and characteristics of the job applicant in order to establish their likely suitability for the job position.

Selection, either internal or external, is a deliberate effort of organization to select a fixed number of personnel from a large number of applicants. The primary aim of employee selection is to choose those persons who are most likely to perform their jobs with maximum effectiveness and remain with the company.


Thus, an attempt is made to find a suitable candidate for the job. In doing so, naturally many applications are rejected. This makes selection a negative function. Having identified the potential applicants, the next steps are to evaluate their experience and qualifications and make a selection.

For a sales position, for example- the criteria should be able to predict which applicants will generate a high volume of sales, for a teaching position as a university professor, they should predict which applicants will get high student evaluation or generate many high quality publications or both.

According to Yoder, “the hiring process is of one or many ‘go-on-go’ gauges. Candidates are screened by the employer and the short-listed applicants go on to the next hurdle, while the unqualified and once are eliminated”.

High performing employees not only make the organization look good, they make the person who hired them look good. To avoid stressful situation, you need to use a systematic selection process. One “good hire” will more than reimburse you for the investment of your time.


For example, based on the functions and responsibilities of the open position, you may determine that you want someone with intellectual curiosity or you need a person with superb organisational skills. Basic idea is to solicit maximum possible information about the candidates to ascertain their suitability for employment.

It is possible that selection process may have different steps for various positions because their selection practices may differ. For example, some organizations conduct selection tests of various types, while others may not use these.

1. Preliminary or Initial Interview:

It is conducted by high calibre receptionists. It is a “stand up” interview conducted at a desk or railing. The initial interview is usually very short and has as its object the elimination of the unqualified candidates. Preliminary interview is generally planned by large organizations to cut the cost of selection by allowing only eligible candidates to go through the further stages in the selection.

A junior executive from the HR department may elicit response from applicants on important items determining the suitability of an applicant for a job such as age, education, skills, experience, pay expectations, nature of job, aptitude, location choice, etc. This “courtesy interview”, as it is often called, helps the department screen out obvious misfits. If the department finds the candidate suitable, a prescribed application form is given to the applicants to fill and submit.

The most appropriate screening method will depend on the type of the job to be filled and seniority of the likely applicants.

2. Application Blank:

Organizations often use application forms as screening devices to determine whether a candidate satisfies minimum job specifications, particularly for entry level jobs. The forms typically ask for information regarding past jobs and present employment status. In a sense, the application blank is a highly structured interview, in which, the questions are standardised and determined in advance.


Application forms are for data gathering only. For example- on the quality of their handwriting or creativity of their-replies.

Application blank is a brief history sheet of an employee’s background, usually containing the following things:

Contents of Application Blank:

i. Personal data (name, address, gender, date and place of birth, identification marks, age, nationality, number of dependants)

ii. Marital data (single or married, children)

iii. Physical data (height, weight, health condition)

iv. Educational data (levels of -formal education, marks, distinctions, any training acquired by professional or technical institutions or correspondence courses)

v. Employment data (past experience, promotions, nature of duties, reasons for leaving previous jobs, salary drawn, etc.)

vi. Extra-curricular activities data (sports or games, NSS, NCC, prize won, leisure-time activities)

vii. References (names of two or more people who certified the suitability of an applicant to the advertised position)

In general terms, the application form gives a synopsis of what applicants have been doing during their adult life, their skills and their accomplishments.

3. Employment Tests:

For further assessment of a candidate’s nature and abilities, some tests are used in the selection procedure. If the tests are properly conducted, they can reduce the selection cost by reducing the large number of applicants to manageable levels. A test is a standardised, objective measure of a person’s behaviour, performance or attitude.

It is standardised because the way the test is carried out, the environment in which the test is administered and the way the individual scores are calculated — are uniformly applied. The objective is to measure individual differences in a scientific way, giving very little room for individual bias and interpretation.

Various tests measure a wide range of ability, from verbal and qualitative skills to perceptional speed. Over the years employment tests have not only gained importance but also a certain amount of inevitability in employment decisions. Since, they try to objectively determines how well an applicant meets job requirements, most companies do not hesitate to invest their time and money in selection testing in a big way.

Some of the commonly used employment tests may be stated thus:

i. Intelligence Tests:

Intelligence tests tries to measure the level of intelligence of a candidate. They measure the incumbent’s learning ability and also the ability to understand instructions and make judgements. The basic objective of intelligence tests is to pick-up employees who are alert and quick at learning things so that they can be offered adequate training to improve their skills for the benefit of the organization.

Intelligence tests do not measure any single trait but rather several abilities such as memory, vocabulary, verbal fluency, numerical ability, perception, spatial visualization, inductive reasoning, mathematical ability, etc. Stanford-Binet test, Binet-Simon test, The Wechsler Adult Intelligence Scale is examples of standard intelligence test.

Some of these tests are increasingly used in competitive examinations while recruiting graduates and postgraduates at entry level management position in banking, insurance, and other financial services sector.

The scores on the test are usually expressed numerically as Intelligence Quotient (IQ) which can be calculated as follows-

It means that the IQ is derived by converting actual age into mental age and multiplying it by 100 in order to facilitate comparison. Higher is the figure, higher is the level of intelligence. Intelligence tests are designed on the basis of age groups.

ii. Aptitude Tests:

These tests measure whether an individual has the capacity or latent ability to learn a given job if given adequate training. The use of aptitude test is advisable when an applicant has had little or no experience along the line of the job opening. Specific aptitudes which are usually tested are mechanical, clerical, musical and academic aptitudes, dexterity (finger, hand), hand-eye coordination, etc.

Some of the tests under this category are:

a. MATRIX (Management Trial Exercise) designed by Procter and Gamble.

b. CAT (Clerical Aptitude Test) to assess vocabulary, spelling, arithmetical ability, details checking, etc.

c. PAT (Pilot Aptitude Test) to access coordination between hands and feet movements.

d. Computer Aptitude Test to assess power of reasoning and analysis.

This tests measure an individual’s potential to learn certain skills like clerical, mechanical, mathematical, problem-solving ability, technical vocabulary, etc. These tests indicate whether or not an individual has the ability to learn the job quickly and efficiently.

Clerical tests for an example may measure the incumbent’s ability to take notes, perceive thing correctly and quickly locate things, ensure proper movements of files, etc. Another example- for semiskilled workers the knowledge of assembling, packaging, testing, inspection is important.

These tests may take one of the following forms:

(a) Mental or intelligence test measure the overall intellectual ability or the IQ of a person and enable us to know whether he has the mental capacity to deal with the new problems. They are useful for selection purpose and determine the future of an employee’s word fluency, memory, inductive reasoning, speed of perception, and spatial visualization.

(b) Mechanical aptitude test measure the capacity of a person to learn a particular type of mechanical work and measure a person’s capacity for spatial visualization, perceptual speed, visual-motor coordination or integration, manual dexterity, visual insights, etc.

They also measure specialised knowledge and information of techniques, arithmetical problem-solving ability and technical vocabulary. They are useful when apprentices, mechanists, mechanics, maintenance workers and mechanical techniques are selected.

(c) Psychomotor or scales tests are those tests which measures a person’s ability to do a specific job. They are administered to determine mental dexterity or motor ability and similar attributes involving muscular movement, control and coordination.

Examples of this type of tests are the McQuarril Test for mechanical ability, the Purdue Mechanical Adaptability Test, and the O’Connor Finger and Tweezer Dexterity Tests.

iii. Personality Tests:

The importance of a personality to job success cannot be denied. These tests aim at measuring those basic make-up or characteristics of an individual, which are non- intellectual in nature. In other words, they probe deeply to discover clues to an individual’s value system, his emotional reactions, and maturity, and his characteristic mood.

They assess his motivation, interests, his ability to adjust himself to the stresses of everyday life, and his capacity for interpersonal relations and self-image. 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 applicants answer all the items truthfully or whether they try to respond in a socially desirable manner. Personality tests are used to measure basic aspects of an applicant’s personality such as motivation, emotional balance, self-confidence, interpersonal behaviour, introversion, emotional stability, neuroticism, submissiveness, compulsion, delusions, self-image, aggressiveness, dominance, fear, distrust, objectivity, pressure, and stress, etc.

Examples of such tests are- Bell Adjustment Inventory, the California Test of Personality scale, Minnesola Multiphasic, Personality Inventory, Thermatic Appreciation Tests, etc.

These tests are of three types:

(a) Objective tests measure neurotic tendencies, self-sufficiency, dominance-submission, and self-confidence.

(b) Projective tests are those in which a candidate is asked to project his own interpretation into certain standard stimulus situations. The way in which he responds to these stimuli depends on his own values, motives, personality, frustrations, aspirations, attitude, and idea about life, etc. The most widely used tests of this type are the Roschach Blot Test and the Thematic Appreciation Test.

(c) Situation tests measures an applicant’s reaction when he is placed in a peculiar situation, his ability to undergo stress and his demonstration of ingenuity under pressure. Such tests usually relates with leaderless group situation in which some problem is posed to a group and they are asked to reach to some conclusion without the help of a leader.

iv. Achievement Tests:

These are designed to measure what the applicant can do on the job currently. Achievement is concerned with what one has accomplished. When a candidate claims to have certain knowledge and the know-how, the achievement test may be conducted to measure how well the candidates know these.

For an example, a typing test may measure the typing performance of a typist in terms of speed, accuracy and efficiency. Performance test may be administered for selecting employees at operative level as well as junior management level. Examples of such test are-General Aptitude Test Battery; the Abstract Reasoning Test, The Millar Analogies Test, The Standford Binet Scales, the Adaptability Tests.

Achievement tests are of two kinds:

(a) Test for measuring job knowledge, which may be oral or written. These tests are administered to determine proficiency in short hand and in operating calculation, adding machines, dictating and transcribing machines, and simple mechanical equipment. Such tests are useful for office workers, mill supervisors, stenographers, public utility employees, sales girls, inspector, and so on.

(b) Work sample tests are miniature replicas of actual job requirements, they are difficult to fake. They offer concrete evidence of the proficiency of an applicant as against his ability to do the job. However, work sample test are not cost-effective, as each candidate has to be tested individually. A typing test provides the material to be typed and notes the time taken and the mistakes committed.

v. Interest Tests:

Interest test is designed to discover a person’s area of interest and identify the kind of jobs that will satisfy him. It is assumed that a person who is interested in a job can do much better than the person who is not interested.

Interest test generally measure interest in outdoor activities, mechanical, computational, scientific, persuasive, artistic, literacy, musical, clerical, social activities, etc. They are inventories of the likes and dislikes of the people of some occupation, hobbies and recreational activities.

Two of the most widely used tests are-

a. Strong vocational interest blank and

b. Kidder preference record.

vi. Simulation Test:

Simulation exercise is a test which duplicates many of the activities and problems that an employee faces while at work. Such exercises are commonly used for hiring managers at various levels. To assess the potential of a candidate for managerial positions, assessment centres are commonly used.

vii. Performance Simulation Test:

To avoid the criticism and potential liability that may result from the use of psychological, aptitude, and other types of written tests, there has been increasing interest in the past decade in developing performance simulation tests. The singular identifying characteristic of these tests is that they require the applicant to engage in specific behaviours which based on job analysis data, have been shown to be key behaviours necessary for doing the job successfully.

viii. Assessment Centres:

In assessment centres, line executive, supervisors and/or qualified psychologist evaluate candidates as they go through two to four days of exercises that simulate real problems that the candidates are likely to encounter on the job. Based on the requirement that the actual job incumbent has to meet activities might include interviews, in-basket problem-solving exercises, group discussions, and business games.

The evidence on the effectiveness of assessment centres is extremely impressive. Initially, a small batch of applicants comes to the assessment centre (a separate room). Their performance in the situational exercises is observed and evaluated by a team of six to eight trained assessors.

The assessor’s judgements on each exercise are compiled and combined to have a summary rating for each candidate being assessed. The assessment centre approach thus, evaluates a candidate’s potential for management on the basis of multiple assessment techniques, standardised methods of making inferences from such techniques, and pooled judgements from multiple assessors.

ix. Other Tests:

(a) Graphology Test:

Graphology involved a trained evaluator to examine the lines, loops, hooks, strokes, curves and flourishes in a person’s handwriting to assess the person’s personality and emotional make-up. The recruiting company may, for example, ask applicants to complete application forms and write about why they want a job. The use of graphology, however, is dependent on the training and expertise of the person doing the analysis.

(b) Polygraph (Lie-Detector):

The polygraph records physical changes in the biological movement as the test subject answers a series of questions. It records fluctuations in respiration, blood pressure, skin sensitivity, and perspiration on a moving roll of graph-paper. The polygraph operator forms a judgement as to whether the subject’s response was truthful or deceptive by examining the biological movements recorded on the paper.

Polygraphs, despite strong resistance by many applicants, are increasingly being used by companies which have problems with Inventory and security of funds. Government agencies have begun to use the polygraph especially for filling security, police, fire, and health positions.

Critics, however, question the appropriateness of polygraphs in establishing the truth about an applicant’s behaviour. Is it possible to prove that the responses recorded by the polygraph occur only because a lie has been told? The fact of the matter is that polygraphs are neither reliable nor valid. Since they invade the privacy of those tested, many applicants vehemently oppose the use of polygraph as a selection tool.

4. Comprehensive Interview:

Interview is probably the most widely used selection tool. It is most complex selection technique because its scope includes measuring all the relevant characteristics and integrating and classifying all other information about the applicant. In practically all organisations interviewing is used for a variety of purposes, including selection, appraisal, disciplinary action, counselling and general problem-solving.

Interviews are designed to probe into areas that cannot be addressed by the application form, or tests. Interview seems to carry a great deal of weight. There is no doubt that the interview is the most widely used selection device that organizations rely on to differentiate candidates.

According to Scott and others, “an interview is a purposeful exchange of ideas, the answering of questions and communication between two or more persons”. An eminent author defines an interview as “a conversation with a purpose”, and the purpose may be to “Get information”, “to give information”, and “to make a friend”.

In other words, an interview is an attempt to secure maximum amount of information from the candidate concerning his suitability for the job under consideration. In this step, the interviewer tries to obtain and synthesise information about the abilities of interviewee and the requirement of the job.

Interview gives the recruiter an opportunity to —

i. Size of the interviewee’s agreeableness (personally),

ii. Ask questions that are not covered in tests,

iii. Obtain as much pertinent information as possible,

iv. Assess subjective “aspects of the candidate like personality, attitude, facial expression (gestures, postures, smiling, eye-contact, appearance, interest, nervousness, family background, ability to work under stress situations, ability to speak, previous experience, interpersonal skill, ability to “fit in” the organization, and problem-solving ability, etc.,

v. Make judgements on interviewee’s enthusiasm and intelligence,

vi. Give facts to the candidate regarding the company, its policies, programmes, procedures, etc., and promote goodwill towards the company.

Richard Calhoon observes- The interview makes three unique contributions to the selection process. First, it is the only way to see an applicant in action – how he looks, his manner, his bearing. Second, it is the only way to witness how he interacts and how he responds; his way of thinking, the effects of his personality on another.

Third, it is perhaps the best way to get at the ‘will do’ features of a performance – motivation, initiative, stability, perseverance, work, habits, and judgements. The so-called ‘can do’ aspect can be examined by application, test and reference checks.

Under the ‘can do’ factors, Dr. McMurray includes these elements- appearance, manners, education as required by the job, intelligence, ability to solve problems, experience in the field knowledge of the project, physical conditions and health.

Under the ‘will do’ factors are listed character traits, viz., stability, industry, willingness to work, perseverance, ability to get along With others, loyalty — that is, identifying with employer — reliance, that is, standing on one’s own feet and making one’s own decisions and leadership.

Besides, “Motivation factors” are also taken into consideration. These are vigorous initiative and drive, need for income, need for security, need for statue, need for power, need for investigate, need to excel, need for perfection, even the need to starve.

From assessing ’emotional maturity’, the factors to be taken into consideration are- freedom from dependence, regard for consequences, capacity for self-discipline, freedom from destructive tendencies and freedom from wishful thinking.

5. Reference Checking or Background Investigation:

Every personnel administrator has the responsibility to investigate each potential applicant. Candidates are required to give their names of two or three references in their application forms. These references may be from individuals who are familiar with the candidate’s academic achievements, or from applicant’s previous employer, who is well versed with the applicant’s job performance, and from coworkers.

In case, reference check is from the previous employer, information in the following area may be obtained. They are job title, job description, period of employment, pay and allowances, benefits provided, rate of absence, etc. Further information regarding candidate’s regularity at work, character, past behaviour, progress, ability to do the work, potentiality, his or her performance, etc., can be obtained.

A personal visit is superior to the mail and telephone methods and is used where it is highly essential to get detailed information which can be secured by observation. Reference checks are taken as a matter of routine and treated casually or omitted entirely in many organizations.

A survey of 122 private and public organizations revealed that 90 per cent checked the applicant’s work references, 84 per cent verified his or her educational background, 28 per cent checked personal references on a regular basis, and only 4 per cent ran regular credit checks.

The most common method of checking was a combination of letters and telephone calls. A good reference check when used sincerely, will fetch useful and reliable information to the organization. Reference checking requires the same use of skills as required by the interviewer and some amount of diplomacy. The main difficulty is ascertaining the accuracy of the information given.

6. Physical/Medical Examination:

The step prior to the final “go-no-go” decision may consist of having the applicant take a physical examination. For most jobs, this is a screening device in the selection process. The majority of physical examinations are currently required to meet the minimum standards for the organization’s group life and medical insurance programmes and to provide base data in case of future worker’s compensation claims.

Such jobs as police officer where rigorous, physical qualifications are required, physical examination is carried out to ascertain the physical standards and fitness of prospective employees. The practice of physical examination varies a great deal both in terms of coverage and timings.

Certain jobs require unusual stamina, strength or tolerance of hard working conditions. A physical examination reveals whether or not a candidate possesses these qualities. It brings out deficiencies not as a basis for rejection but as a positive aid to selective placement and as indicating restrictions on his transfer to other positions.

Physical examination serves the following purposes:

i. It gives us an indication whether a candidate is physically able to perform the job,

ii. It discovers existing disabilities and obtains a record of the employee’s health at the time of hiring, so that the question of the company’s responsibilities may be settled in the event a workman’s compensation claim for an injury is referred,

iii. It prevents the employment of those who suffer from some type of disease,

iv. It helps the right placement of those people who are employable but physically handicaps may necessitate assignment only those specific job,

v. The basic purpose of physical examination is to place people in jobs which they can handle without injury or damage to their health,

vi. Candidates are medically examined by company’s physician or by a medical officer approved by the company for the purpose.

7. Approval by the Appropriate Authority:

In executing the personnel unit screening functions, the emphasis tends to be more on formal qualifications and general suitability. At this point in the process, a third interview is conducted.

First, the organizational relationship often requires that the supervisor be given the right to pass upon personnel, otherwise he or she cannot be held accountable for their performance. Second, the qualities that are generally appraised in the interview are highly intangible such as personality, ability to get along with others and leadership potential.

On the basis of the above steps, suitable candidates are recommended for selection by the selection committee. For personnel department, though such a committee or personnel department may have authority to select the candidates finally. Often, it has staff authority to recommend the candidates for selection to the appropriate authority.

Organizations may designate the various authorities for approval of final selection of candidates for different categories of candidates. The personnel specialists together with line management will now have to weigh the strength and weaknesses of each candidate. Thus, for top level managers, board of directors may be approving authority; for lower levels, even functional heads concerned may be approving authority.

For example, in university, it may be syndicate/executive committee. When the approval is received, the candidates are informed about their selection and asked to report for duty to specified persons. When the supervisor takes over, the emphasis tends to switch towards more specifically job-oriented worker characteristics such as training and relevant past experience.

He is formally appointed by issuing him an appointment letter or by concluding with him a service agreement. The appointment letter contains the terms and conditions of the employment, policies, duties, responsibilities of applicants, future opportunities, pay scale, and other benefits associated with the job.

8. Placement:

After selecting a candidate, he should be placed on a suitable job. It involves assigning a specific rank and responsibility to an employment. Most organizations put new recruits on probation for a given period of time (say six months or one year) after which their services are confirmed after successful completion of the probationary period. During this period, they are observed keenly, and when they complete this period successfully, they become the permanent employee of the organization.

Placement is an important HR activity. If neglected, it may create employee adjustment problems leading to absenteeism, turnover, accidents, poor performance, and so on. Proper placement is important to both employee and the organization. Pigors and Myers have defined placement as the determination of the job to which an accepted candidate is to be assigned and his assignment to that job.

It is matching of what the supervisor has reason to think he can do with the job demands; it is a matching of what he imposes in terms of strain, working conditions, etc., and what he offers in the form of payroll, companionship with others, promotional possibilities, etc. Proper placement helps to improve employee morale.

If a candidate adjusts himself to the job and continuous to perform as per the expectations, it might mean that the candidate is properly placed. However, if the new employee has problems in adjusting himself to the job and he continues to perform below expectations, he might be misplaced. Such new recruits should be assigned some other more suitable jobs or they must be given further training to make them fit for the job.

9. Orientation, Induction or Indoctrination:

Induction is a technique by which a new employee is rehabilitated into his surroundings and introduced to the practices, policies, rules and regulations, purposes of the organisation. In other words, it is a welcoming process — the idea is to welcome a newcomer, make him feel at home, generate in him a feeling that his own job and to introduce the new employee and the organisation to each other. A formal orientation tries to bridge the information gap of the new employee.

When a new comer joins an organisation, he is a stranger to the people, workplace and work environment. He may feel insecure, shy and nervous. The first few days may be anxious and disturbing ones for him. He may have anxiety caused by not following the usual practices prevalent in the organisation or the haphazard procedures, and lack of information.

These may develop discouragement, disillusionment or defensive behaviour. Introduction leads to reduction of such anxieties, dispels the irrational fears of present employees and hold colleagues responsible for assisting the new comer so that he may feel confident.

When employee joins an organisation with certain assumptions and expectations that do not match with reality; the new employee experiences a reality shock. Effective orientation programmes help to reduce this reality shock by providing a more realistic expectation on the part of the new employee.

Proper employee orientation helps to accommodate the new employee with existing employees by developing new acquaintances and understanding of the various aspects of the job.

There is another example for effective induction. The new comer may expect-

(1) Opportunity for advancement.

(2) Social status and prestige – the feeling of doing something important and the recognition of this by others,

(3) Responsibility,

(4) Opportunities to use special aptitude and educational background,

(5) Challenges and adventure,

(6) Opportunity to be creative and original, and

(7) Lucrative salary, and

(8) Current status.

But when these expectations are not fulfilled, it results in frustrating experiences for new employees, experiences which include jobs with low initial challenge, inadequate feedback and performance appraisals. Orientation help to overcome these problems by providing more realistic expectations on the part of new employees and more understanding on the part of supervisors.

Weighted Application Blank, Interview and Induction:

Weighted Application Blank:

To make the application form more job related, some organization assign numeric values or weights to response provided by applicants. Generally, the items that have a strong relationship to job performance are given high scores.

For example, for a medical representative’s position, items such as previous selling experience, medical status, age, commission earned on sales previously, etc., may be given high scores when compared to other items such as gender, place of birth, religion, language, etc.

Another example to create such a form, individual form items like number of years of schooling, number of previous jobs, number of months on last job, reason for leaving last job, salary increase overall previous job and military experience are validated against performance and turnover measures and given appropriate weights.

The total score of each applicant is obtained by summing the weights of the individual item responses. The resulting scores are then used in selection decision. It is best suited for jobs where there are many workers especially for sales and technical jobs and it is particularly useful in reducing turnover. It takes time to develop such a form.

Cost of developing a weighted application blank could be prohibitive if the organization has several operating levels with unique features. The WAB must be “updated every few years to ensure that the factors previously identified are still valid predictors of job success”. And finally the organization should be careful not to depend on weight of a few items while selecting employees.

Its objectives should be clearly determined. For example, there may be a selection of more stable employees to decrease labour turnover or increase job efficiency. The factors that bring about success may also be taken into account. For this purpose, the varying conditions in an organization should be noted. The blank should be continually updated. Finally, no firm should try to select an employee solely on the basis of one or two important facts.


Types of Interview:

Several types of interviews are commonly used, depending on the nature and the importance of the position to be filled within an organization.

(i) Patterned or Structured Interview:

It is based on the assumption that, to be more effective, every patient detail bearing on what is to be accomplished, what kind of information is to be sought or given, how the interview is conducted, and how much time is to be allotted to it, must be worked out in advance.

Questions would be asked in a particular order, with every little deviation. In the directive interview, the recruiter uses a predetermined set of questions that are clearly job related. Structured questions improve the reliability of the interview process, eliminate biases and errors and may even enhance the ability of a company to withstand legal challenges.

On the negative side, the whole process is somewhat mechanical, restricts the freedom of interviewers and may even convey disinterest to applicants who are used to more flexible interviews. Also designing a structured interview may take a good amount of time and energy.

McMurray explains why the patterned interview is likely to improve the judgement of the interviews; First, the interviewer works from definite, job specifications; he knows what qualities and each job requires. Second, he has a plan, he knows what questions to ask. Third, he has been trained in the techniques of conducting an interview, i.e., he knows how to put the candidate at ease, how to make him talk and how to extract pertinent information.

Fourth, prior to interview, he has checked with outside sources (previous employers, schools, etc.), and already knows a great deal about the applicant. Fifth, he has a series of clinical concepts, i.e., that of emotional immaturity — which provides him with a yardstick for interpreting and evaluating the information obtained from the candidate. Sixth, the interviewer himself has been carefully selected “to assure that he has adequate intelligence and is emotionally well adjusted”.

(ii) Non-Directive Interview:

In a non-directive interview, the recruiter asks questions as they come to mind. And there is no specific format to be followed. The interviewer asks broad, open ended questions such as “tell me more about what you did on your last job” and allows the applicant to talk freely with a minimum interruption and obtaining comparable data on various applicants.

In other words, the interview is not directed by questions or comments as to what the candidate should be asked. Generally, the candidate is encouraged to express himself on a variety of subjects, on his expectations and motivations, background and upbringing, interest, political predictions, etc.

The interviewer looks for threats of character and nature of his aspirations and his strengths and weaknesses manifest or potential. The purpose of such interview is to determine what kind of person a candidate really is.

(iii) Situational Interview:

One variation of the structured interview is known as the situational interview. In this interview candidate is asked specific questions about what may happen on a job. The candidate is asked to assess a situation and to provide solutions on how he or she would handle it.

(iv) Depth or Action Interview:

It is semi-structured in nature and utilities questions in key areas which have been studied in advanced by the interviewer. The typical subjects discussed at such interviews include the candidate’s home life, education, previous experience, aptitude, recreational interests, and hobbies.

The interviewer provides instructional information about his organization, the nature of work, pay, opportunities for advancement, and demand likely to be made on the employee. The basic objective of this interview is to get a true picture of the interviewee by intensively examining his background and thinking so that a correct evaluation and decision may be made. This type of interviews demands more mature understanding of human behaviour and development therefore, more careful selection of the interviewer.

(v) Group Discussion Interview:

In this type of interview, the groups are interviewed. The interviewees are given certain problems and are asked to reach a specific decision within a particular time limit. The applicants entered into group discussions, knowing that the interview is a test, but do not know which qualities are being measured or tested.

A few observers watch the activities of the interviewees — those who take a lead in the discussion, those who try influencing others, those who summarise and clarify issues, and those who speak effectively the assumptions underlying this type of interview is that “the behaviour displayed in the solution of the problem is related to potential success in the job. The object is to see how well individuals perform on a particular task or in a particular situation.”

In this type of interview, the emphasis is on the analysis of the interviewers’ impressions from discussions rather than factual information.

(vi) Panel or Board Interview:

In this type of interview, a candidate is interviewed by a number of interviewers. Questions may be asked in turn or asked in random order as they arise on any topic.

(vii) Stress Interview:

In the stress interview, the interviewer assumes a hostile role toward the applicant. He deliberately puts him on the defensive by trying to annoy, embarrass or frustrate him. The interviewer in such a situation, asks questions rapidly, criticizes the interviewee’s answers, interrupts him frequently, keeps the candidate waiting indefinitely and then subjects him to a barrage of interrogations.

Questioning whatever he might state, ask too many questions at a time by many interviewers, make derogatory remarks about the candidate or puts him in an awkward situation, e.g., dropping something on the floor and asking him to pick it up, accusing him that he is lying and so on.

The purpose is to find out how a candidate behaves in a stress situations – whether he loses his temper or gets confused. Moreover, the stressful interview situations may not necessarily review, how a candidate will behave in real life stressful situations on a job. Yet its judicial application may reveal many characteristics of an applicant.


Induction Procedure:

The HR department may initiate the following steps while organizing the induction programme:

1. Welcome to the organization.

2. Explain about the company.

3. Show the location/department where the new recruit will work.

4. Give the company’s manual to the new recruit.

5. Provide details about various workgroups and the extent of unionism within the company.

6. Give details about pay, benefits, holidays, leaves, etc., emphasise the importance of attendance or punctuality.

7. Explain about future training, opportunities and career prospects.

8. Clarify doubts by encouraging the employee to ask questions.

9. Take the employee on a guided tour of buildings, facilities, etc., hand him over to his supervisor.

Steps Involved in the Selection Process – 7 Steps

Selection is the process of choosing the right person for the job. The best candidate from among a pool of job applicants is selected for the post.

According to Garry Dessler, “selection is the process of picking individuals out of the pool of job applications, with requisite qualification and competence to fill jobs in the organisation.”

Selection process involves the following steps:

Step # 1. Receiving of Application:

Selection process begins with receiving of application from the job applicants. The applications received from the candidate enclose personal and professional details of the candidate. These applications facilitate analysis and comparison of the candidates. The organization provides a time limit within which the prospective candidates are required to submit their application.

The job application may be written by the candidate or the organization may design their own application blank with a specific format containing biographical details like date of birth, gender, religion, race, nationality, residence, marital status and details of educational qualification and experience, which is filled by the candidate. 

Step # 2. Screening of the Application Form:

On receiving the applications, the applications are sorted out. Incomplete applications and applications of applicants who do not fulfil the job requirement are rejected. The candidates who fulfil the job requirement are tested.

Step # 3. Testing for Employment:

The organization may conduct different test on the basis of requirement .The tests are conducted to judge whether the candidate is capable of doing the job or not. The organizations conduct written test to understand the technical knowledge, intelligence, aptitude, learning capacity, personality, atti­tude and interest of the candidates. This process is useful when the number of applicants is large.

Types of Test:

Tests are classified into eight types.

They are:

i. Aptitude tests,

ii. Emotional Quotient,

iii. Achievement tests,

iv. Situational tests,

v. Interest tests,

vi. Personality tests,

vii. Polygraph test and

viii. Multi­dimensional testing.

i. Aptitude tests – These tests measure the individual’s capability to learn a given job if adequate training is given.

ii. Emotional Quotient (EQ) – It judges the emotional involvement and commitment of the employees in their contribution to the company.

iii. Achievement Tests – These tests are conducted to judge the proficiency and skill of the applicant that he or she claims to have achieved that through education and experience.

iv. Situational test – This test evaluates a candidate in a similar real life situation. In this test, the candidate is required to cope with the situation or solve critical situations of the job.

v. Interest tests – These tests identify the likes, interests and dislikes of candidates in relation to work, job, occupations, hobbies and recreational activities. These tests help to place the applicant in the job in which he is interested.

vi. Personality Tests – These tests measure an individual’s value system, his emotional reactions and maturity and characteristic mood. They are expressed through self-confidence, emotional control, optimism, decisiveness, sociability, objectivity, patience, fear, distrust, and initiative, judgement dominance of submission, impulsiveness, sympathy, integrity and stability.

vii. Polygraph Tests – This test is conducted using an instrument called polygraph that records changes in breathing, blood pressure, pulse and skin response associated with sweating of palms and plots these reactions on paper.

viii. Multi-dimensional Testing – Organization develops multi-dimensional testing in order to find out whether the candidates possess a variety of skills or not, candidate’s ability to integrate the multi-skills and potentiality to apply them based on situational and functional requirement.

Step # 4. Personal Interview:

The candidates who successfully qualify the test and examination are called for the personal interview. Candidates are interviewed by individual or a panel who are usually top level officials. Personal interview enables face to face interaction, which helps to judge the suitability of the candidate for the job. The candidates are interviewed to judge the knowledge, skill, ability of candidate to handle stress.

The candidates are asked several questions about their experience on another job, their family background, their interests, etc. Their strengths and weaknesses are identified and noted by the interviewers which help them to take the decision of selection. Group discussions are also conducted to evaluate a person’s inner thought while working with the company, his/her ability to express views correctly, team spirit and social behaviour. This process also helps to cross-check or verifies the information obtained earlier. In the interview the candidates are provided essential facts about the job.

Types of Interview:

The interviews are classified by the purpose for which the interview is held.

i. Promotion interview – This interview is meant for personnel whose promotion is due. Promotion interview clarifies information regarding nature of duties, responsibilities and expectations from the worker in the promoted post.

ii. Appraisal or assessment interview An appraisal interview is conducted for periodical assessment of employees. The assessment may be through self-assessment forms or assessment by supervisors or both.

iii. Patterned or structured interview Such interview is fully planned with accuracy and precision. Every pertinent detail is worked out in advance. A list questions to be asked is prepared and the questions are asked in a particular cycle. This allows for a systematic coverage of the required information.

iv. Stress interview – In these kinds of interview the candidate’s job behavior and level of withstanding during the period of stress and strain is ascertained. The interviewer tests the candidate by putting him under stress and strain by interrupting the applicant from answering, criticizing his opinions, asking questions pertaining to unrelated areas, keeping silent for unduly long period after he has finished speaking etc.

v. Group interview Group interview is conducted to quickly screen candidates for the job. Most of the time it begins with a short presentation about the company followed by question answer session. In this type of interview the ability of the candidate to interact with others is analyzed.

vi. Group discussion interview – Under the group discussion interview method, one topic is given for discussion to the candidates who assemble in one room and are required to discuss the topic in detail. This type of interview helps the interviewer in appraising certain skills of the candidates like initiative, inter-personal skills, dynamism, presentation, leading, comprehension, collaboration etc.

vii. Depth interview In this type of interview, the candidates are examined extensively in core areas of knowledge and skills of the job. Experts in that particular field examine the candidates by posing relevant questions so as to extract critical answers from them, initiating discussions regarding critical areas of the job, and by asking the candidates to explain even minute operations of the job performance.

Step # 5. Reference Check:

The company asks for references and letter of recommendation to crosscheck for the information provided by the candidate through their application form and during the interviews.

Step # 6. Medical Examination:

The candidate qualifying the interview is called for medical test to examine the physical strength and fitness of a candidate. Candidates may be rejected on the basis of their ill health, even if they perform well and qualify the tests and interviews.

Step # 7. Final Selection:

After qualifying the medical test the candidate is selected with the approval of the superior. The candidate is given the appointment letter to join the organization on a particular date. The appointment letter specifies the post, title, salary and terms of employment.

Generally, the candidate is initially appointed on probation and after specific time period they become permanent. On completion of the selection process the selected candidate is assigned the job. This is called placement. Placement means assignment of job to employees for which he is considered suitable.