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Best Recruitment and Selection Practices

  • 10 Pages
  • Published On: 8-12-2023
Best Recruitment and Selection Practices

An effective recruitment process must consider both the eligibility and suitability of the candidates while providing an overall assessment and measurement of the best candidate. However, there is a consensus among both scholars and practitioners that traditional recruitment and selection processes only deal with eligibility and fails to evaluate the candidate’s suitability. This is a serious weakness that hinders the selection of the best candidates, despite the application of a text-book definition of a best practice recruitment process. This essay describes the best practice in recruitment and selection as well as why, despite using the most suitable recruitment and selection criteria, companies still end up with unsuitable employees.

Figures quoted by Dricker (2017) indicate that a lack of technical competence or lack of skills only accounts for 11% of the new-hire failures. On the other hand, according to Dricker (2017), most of the new hires that are wrong for the company are due to lack of suitability and not lack of skills. This implies that suitability is a more significant factor in successful recruitment than eligibility.


While a significant number of organizations have a high failure rate of recruits, this is not surprising because managers acknowledge that some recruits elicit clues of failure. For instance, Abbasi et al (2020) noted that a significant percentage of staff turnovers are attributable to mistakes made during employee selection and recruitment process; while data by Al-Khasawneh (2021) indicate that staff turnover almost double when the recruit is not suitable for the job.

On this note, Forsyth & Anglim (2020) wrote that traditional recruitment strategies are more based on interviews, yet this has proven over and over that interviews do not accurately predict an employee’s suitability for the job. Ideally, the traditional recruitment process entails Human Resource Planning (including forecasting, job analysis, job description, person specification); attraction, preliminary selection; employment tests; selection interviews; verification of references; medical evaluation; realistic job previews; hiring decision, and post-appointment factors (including induction, mentoring and socialization during probation), all which makes HR practitioners believe that they are likely going to hire the most talented people to work in their organizations.

However, while criticising this traditional approach to recruitment, Drucker (2017) noted that whereas most people still hold on to interviews as the only method of hiring, statistics prove that the decisions made based on interviews are only accurate 14% of the times. This implies that there is an 86% chance that every hiring made based on interviews will go wrong. Thus, the interview process only recommends the right candidate one out of seven times.

Several other pieces of research also show that traditional hiring practices are less predictive of employees’ future job performance. For instance, studies cited by Dricker (2017) show that 70% of executive failures are attributable to poor execution strategies including the inability to assign the right people to the right job and address HR problems early enough.

If HR managers are going to solve these problems, there are specific questions that they must answer. For instance, one of the questions relates to whether an employee can be changed after being hired. The other question is whether HR should focus on the person’s fit for the job or to the organization. Regarding the first question (i.e. whether or not an employee can be changed), there is enough empirical evidence showing that by the time one reaches a recruitment age, their patterns of thoughts, behaviour and feelings are difficult to change, even if they collide with the employer’s expectations of the job. However, if these thoughts, behaviour and feelings are aligned with the expectations of the job or company, then employee engagement is achieved (Alola & Alafeshat, 2021). This implies that because behavioural preferences and patterns of recruits cannot be changed, HR practitioners must be careful with whom they recruit.

Regarding the question of whether recruiters should focus on employee’s suitability to the job or fit for the organization, it is important to examine both approaches based on the concept of employee engagement. Here, according to Pah & Utama (2020), the traditional method of recruitment is typically focused on finding employees with the presumed skills and knowledge required for the job. Therefore, the underlying theory is that the recruiters know what those skills are, they can differentiate who has the highest level of those attributes and is suitable for the job (Irfan et al, 2020). In short, the recruiter’s concern is whether the candidate meets the demands of the job. This model views the demands of the job as rigid requirements that must be met by a candidate otherwise, they will not be considered fit for the job.

The other aspects of interviews that make sit ineffective in selecting the best candidate are the fact that sometimes candidates lie about their skills and suitability for the job. Even if they provide referees, this too might not work in getting the true picture of the employee’s suitability for the job. In this regard, Santos et al (2020) wrote that it is not surprising for candidates to lie during job interviews because the entire framework of an interview is like a contest where they feel they must show their best to get the job.

Nonetheless, the dishonesty in job interviews can also be attributable to the idea that most recruiters who subscribe to the traditional methods of recruitment miss out on important information when developing the job description. When doing so, according to Rustam (2020), recruiters fail to inform candidates about the hiring managers, what happened to the last employee who previously held the job, why the previous employee no longer holds the job, and the general working environment of the job that might have led to the position falling vacant. According to Ansoglenang (2020), these are crucial pieces of information that help candidates to self-evaluate their suitability for the job before even applying – enabling them to prepare well-enough for interviews and give accurate information instead of lying.

But Liu et al (2021) argue that sometimes the act of lying during the selection process is purely situational. For instance, a candidate may have had a bad year and ran over three jobs within a year, or they might live the year of their graduation off the resume to protect their age. However, regardless of the situation, recruiters need to create a general feeling among candidates that their suitability for the job will be evaluated based on an objective criterion and not based on subjectivity (Usman & Setiawan, 2020).

However, the best practice is to evaluate the question of whether the job meets the aptitude, work and behavioural environment needed by the individual. According to Hosain & Liu (2020), recruiters who use traditional approaches to recruitment tend to ignore this dimension of the selection process and this contributes to much of their recruitment failures. The best practice is that recruiters must take time to understand whether the job context can substantially meet the candidate’s employee needs. This is because a high correlation between employee needs and job requirements can lead to enhanced employee engagement, job performance and satisfaction.

Any potential fit between the recruiting organization and the candidate is an important step towards successful recruitment. According to Bykal (2020), this fit is not related to a specific job requirement but rather the match should be between the candidate’s values and the company values. Even if the candidate has the required skills, they will still need to exercise those skills in a unique and accommodative context for them to be successful (Shaeabuyryak et al, 2020). This implies that there is a difference between contextual performance and specific job performance – a phenomenon that recruiters must understand. Recruiting a candidate who is a good fit for the organization can potentially be successful in a variety of jobs across the organization because their values match the company’s values – yielding a strong workplace engagement. The candidate’s values guide their decision-making behaviour and deepen their commitment and engagement.

Moreover, employee engagement can be enhanced when the organization is focused on matching the candidate’s skills with the requirements of the job while matching the candidate’s skills to the elements of the job that will meet those needs (Ramdania et al, 2020). As part of the recruitment process, recruiters must recognize that this balance can only be achieved using effective selection tools and careful interviewing. But Sajjadi et al (2020) argue that developing an employee’s fit does not stop by this process. Rather, it also requires continuous mentorship and employee development to ensure that the employee is guided on the right track towards finding a fit with the job requirements.

Of greater importance are the tools of selection and recruitment that recruiters choose to use. According to Akhter (2020), modern technology has enabled the development of more effective and inexpensive recruitment tools that can help HR practitioners to assess, measure, and higher the most suitable employees. Whether the company is considering to move an employee from one job position to the other, just changing tasks or getting completely new employees, HR managers should use tools that are effective in identifying candidates with a performance potential so that they can evade the consequences of bad recruitment (Piyoh & Tumewu, 2020).

Such tools should be able to draw the difference between what a candidate is comfortable with doing and what the job requires to achieve the desired level of performance excellence (Usman & Setiawan, 2020). Ideally, such tools should be cognisant of the fact that placing an individual in a job position is not just about just matching the recruits’ skills, experience, qualifications and knowledge. Rather, according to Bykal (2020), it also entails matching the job requirements with the candidate’s behavioural preferences, aptitudes, and work environment preferences.

Such tools should also be capable of conducting a pre-employment screening so that recruiters can have a better understanding of the candidates’ suitability for the job. Considering that most recruiters lack the training and skills to conduct an accurate reading and assessment of the candidates (Hosain & Liu, 2020), they may also lack the confidence to make the right decisions even when they make an accurate assessment. Through effective recruitment tools, managers can make the right selection with confidence that they made the right choice.

That said, it is important to identify where experience, skill and knowledge fit into the recruitment process. Here, Sajjadi et al (2020) argued that recruiters should not ignore the fact they must also select candidates with the right skill, knowledge and experience. However, while these attributes are easy to assess, they should not be relied on as predictors of an employee’s performance capabilities. Rather, recruiters can avoid hiring failures if they focus their interviews on evaluating the candidate’s suitability work environment fit, work aptitude and behavioural preferences. This implies that recruiters might need to invest in recruitment tools that can conduct comprehensive behaviour mapping so that they can make the right selection decisions.

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Such tools should also be able to assist with on-going employee training, development and performance management. But, Sajjadi et al (2020) noted that while selecting recruitment tools, recruiters should be conscious of equality and diversity issues that they are legally bound to consider. While Bykal (2020) acknowledge that behavioural tools have been useful in developing a more ‘suitability’ focused recruitment processes, Hosain & Liu (2020) contend that recruitment behavioural tools and equipment can only provide basic information about the candidates – and therefore recruiters need other tools to measure those behaviours against. It is not about getting basic behavioural measurements but rather, it is about identifying and quantifying what sets a candidate apart from the rest. This can be achieved by fully leveraging on various profiling tools and techniques that will make the selection process more accurate and easier.

In conclusion, this paper has highlighted the idea that whereas empirical evidence has proven that traditional recruitment processes are ineffective in selecting and hiring the most suitable employees, some recruiters still use these approaches. One of the significant reasons why traditional approaches to recruitment and selection are ineffective is that they provide inaccurate information about the candidates’ suitability – including the opportunity for candidates to lie about their suitability. Instead of such traditional approaches, this essay recommends that recruiters should adopt recruitment strategies that help to identify the extent to which the candidate’s behavioural and work environment preference fit the job requirements. This fit should not be in the dimension of specific job requirements but rather, in the dimension of finding a match between the organizational values and the candidate’s values.


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