Why careful selection is important?
With a pool of applications, the next step is to select the best candidates for the job. This usually means whittling down the applicant pool by using the screening tools: tests assessment centers, and background and reference checks. Then the prospective supervisor can interview likely candidates, and decide who to hire.
Selecting the right employees is important for three main reasons. First, your own performance always depends in part on your subordinates. Employees with the right skills and attributes will do a better job for you and the company. Employees without these skills or who are abrasive or obstructionist won’t perform effectively, and your own performance and the firm’s will suffer. The time to screen out undesirables is before they are in the door, not after.
Second, it is important because it’s costly to recruit and hire employees. Hiring and training even a clerk can cost $5,000 or more in fees and supervisory time. The total cost of hiring a manager could easily be 10 times as high once you add search fees, interviewing time, reference checking and travel and moving expenses.
Third, it’s important because of the legal implications of incompetent hiring. In US, EEO laws and court decisions require nondiscriminatory selection procedures for protected groups. Furthermore, courts will find employers liable when employees with criminal records or other problem take advantage of access to customers’ homes (or similar opportunities) to commit crimes. Lawyers call hiring workers with such backgrounds, without proper safeguards, negligent hiring. In one case, Ponticas v K M S Investments, an apartment manager with a pass key entered a woman’s apartment and assaulted her. The court found the apartment complex’s owner and operator negligent in not properly checking the manager’s background before hiring him.
Negligent hiring underscores the need to think through what the job’s human requirements really are. For example, ‘non-rapist’ isn’t likely to appear as a required knowledge, skill, or ability in a job analysis of a repair person. But it is that type of requirements that has been the focus of many negligent hiring suits.
Employers protect against negligent hiring claims by:
1. Carefully scrutinizing all information supplied by the applicant on his or her employment application. For example, look for unexplained gaps in employment.
2. Getting the applicants written authorization for reference checks, and carefully checking references.
3. Saving all records and information you obtain about the applicant.
4. Rejecting applicants who make false statements of materials facts or who have conviction records for offenses directly and important to the job in question.
5. Keeping in mind the need to balance the applicant’s privacy rights with others ‘need to know’ especially when you discover damaging information.
6. Taking immediate disciplinary action if problems arise.
Effective selection is therefore important and depends, to large degree, on the basic testing concepts of validity and reliability.
Reliability is a test’s first major requirements and refers to its consistency: A reliable test is one that yields test or when he or she takes the same test on two or more different occasions.
A test’s reliability very important; if a person scored 90 on an intelligence test on a Monday and 130 when retested on Tuesday you probably wouldn’t have much faith in the test.
There are several ways to estimate consistency or reliability. You could administer the same points test to the same people at two different points in time, comparing their test scores at time two with their scores at time one; this would be a retest estimate. Or you could administer a test and then administer what experts believe to be an equivalent test later; this would be an equivalent form estimate. The Scholastic Assessment Test (SAT) is an example.
A test’s internal consistency is another, measure of its reliability. For example, suppose you have 10 items on a test of vocational interests; you believe these measures in various ways the person’s interests in working outdoors. You administer the test and then statistically analyze the degree to which response to these 10 items vary together. This would provide a measure of the internal reliability. Psychologists refer to this as an internal comparison estimate. Internal consistency is one reason that you find apparently repetitive questions on some test questionnaires.