What is Selection? Process, Types, Steps, Difference

  • Post last modified:19 March 2021
  • Reading time:7 mins read

What is Selection?

Selection is a process of differentiating between applicants in order to identify (& hire) those with a greater likelihood of success in a job. It involves steps leading to the employment of persons who possess the ability and qualifications to perform the jobs which have fallen vacant in the organization.

It is basically a matching process, that is finding “FIT” between person and job.

Selection Process

Steps in Selection Process are:

  • Preliminary Interview or Screening: When a large number of applicants are available, the preliminary interview is desirable for both the company and the applicant. The main objective of such an interview is to screen out undesirable unqualified candidates at the very outset.

    Care should be taken to ensure that the “weeding out” process does not lead to the elimination of desirable workers. Six items have been suggested as knock-out factors in the preliminary screening program of sales executives.

    They include:
    • Instability of Residence
    • Failure in Business Within Two Years
    • Divorce or Separation Within Two Years
    • Excessive Personal Indebtedness
    • Too High a Standard of Living
    • Unexplained Gap in the Employment Record.

  • Application Form: It is traditional & widely accepted for serving information from the prospective candidate. Many companies formulate their own style of application form depending upon the requirement of information based on the size of the company, nature of the business activity, type & level of the job.

    They also formulate different application forms for a different job at the level.

    It includes the following items:
    1. Biographical Data: It includes name, present and permanent address, gender, date of birth, marital status, nationality, height, weight and number of dependents.

      They provide information regarding the applicant’s socioeconomic background, family status & its impact on employee’s behaviour. This information can be used by the management to know the suitability of the candidate.

    2. Educational Attainments: Education (subjects offered and grades secured) training acquired in special fields & knowledge gained from professional/technical institute or evening classes or through correspondence courses.

    3. Work Experience: Previous experience, number of the job held, nature of duties & responsibilities, duration of various assignments, the reason for leaving the previous employer.

    4. Salary: Demanded & other benefits expected.

    5. Personal Items: Association membership, personal likes & dislikes, hobbies.

    6. References: Name & address of previous employer & references.

  • Employment Test: They are used to get information about the candidate, which is not available from application blank or interview. They help in matching the characteristics of individuals with a vacant job so as to employ the right type of personnel.

    Following the type of test are used:
    1. Intelligence Tests: It is a mental ability test. They measure learning ability, ability to understand instructions and make judgments. They measure several abilities such as memory, vocabulary, verbal fluency, numerical ability, perception.

    2. Achievement Tests: Achievement tests are designed to measure what the applicant can do on the job currently. For example, Typing test shows typing proficiency, a shorthand test measures the person’s ability to take dictation. They are also known as work sampling tests, wherein a job applicant’s ability to do a small portion of the job is tested.

      They involve:
      • Motor-involving physical manipulation of things
      • Verbal.

    3. Aptitude Test: Measures an individual’s potential to learn certain skills-clerical, mechanical, mathematical. These tests indicate whether an individual has the ability to learn a given job quickly and efficiently.

    4. Personality Test: Personality tests measure an individual’s personality factors and the relationship between personality factors and actual job criteria. The personality aspects which are evaluated are as follows – motivation, emotional balance, self-confidence, interpersonal behavior.

    5. Assessment Centre: Assessment center is an extended work sample. It uses groups and individual exercises. A batch of applicants is assessed by a team of 6 to 8 trained assessors.

      Techniques are:
      • In baskets
      • Group Discussions
      • Business games
      • Individual Presentation
      • Structured Interview

    6. Graphology Tests: Analysis of lines, loops, hooks, strokes, curves in a person’s handwriting to assess the person’s personality and emotional makeup.

    7. Polygraph Tests: Also known as lie diction test, records physical changes in the body such respiration, blood pressure and perspiration on a moving roll of paper while answering a series of questions. Suitable for government agencies for filling security, police, fire and health positions.

    8. Issues: Is it possible to prove that the responses recorded by the polygraph occur only because a lie has been told? What about those situations in which a person lies without guilt (pathological liar) or lies believing the response to be true.

    9. Integrity Tests: To measure an employee’s honesty to predict those who are more likely to steal from an employer.

      Such questions are generally asked:
      • Do you carry office stationery back to your home for occasional use?
      • Do you mark attendance for your colleagues also?
      • Have you ever told a lie?

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Difference Between Recruitment and Selection

  • Recruitment means searching for sources of labor and stimulating people to apply for jobs, whereas selection means selecting of right kind of people for various jobs.

  • Recruitment is a positive process whereas selection is a negative process.

  • Recruitment creates a large pool of applicants whereas selection leads to the screening of unsuitable candidates.

  • Recruitment is a simple process, it involves contracting the various sources of labour whereas selection is a complex and time-consuming process. The candidate has to clear a number of hurdles before they are selected for a job.

Types of the Interview

  1. Appraisal interview: where superior and subordinate sit together after the performance appraisal to discuss the subordinate’s rating and possible remedial actions.
  2. Selection interview
  3. Exit interview

Types of Selection Interview

  1. Non-directive Interview
  2. Patterned Interview
  3. Structural Interview
  4. Panel Interview
  5. Stress Interview

Non-directive Interview

In this, the recruiter ask questions as they come to mind. There is no specific format. The question can take any direction.

Patterned Interview

The employees follow a predetermined sequence of questions. Questions regarding his technical competence, personality traits, attitudes, motivation, etc.

Structural Interview

They are fixed job-related questions presented to each applicant. They are asked for a specific job.

Panel Interview

In this type of interview the candidate is interviewed by a group of panellists representing the various stakeholders in the hiring process. Within this format, there are several approaches to conducting the interview.

Stress Interview

It is an interview in which the applicant is made uncomfortable by a series of often rude, annoying or embarrassing questions to test the applicant’s confidence level and ability to stand erect in a difficult situation is put to test.

Steps in Interview Process

It is an act. Interviewees must be treated properly so as to leave a good impression about the company.

Here is a list of mistakes generally committed by the interviewers:

  • Favor applicants who share his own attitudes.

  • Not asking the right questions and not getting relevant responses.

  • May be influenced by ‘cultural noise’- responses the applicant believes are socially acceptable rather than facts.

  • May allow themselves to be unduly influenced by associating a particular personality trait with a person’s origin or cultural background, stereotyping.

  • May allow the ratings to be influenced by his own likes or dislikes (bias).

  • The poorly dressed candidate is not intelligent, attractive females are good for public dealings, etc. ‘Halo effect’- athlete make good salespeople.

  • Candidate order error.

  • Have been under pressure to hire at short notice.

  • Have been influenced by the behaviour (his body language) his or her dress (especially in case of a female candidate) and other physical factors that are not job-related.

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