The procedure of selection varies from organization to organization and even from department to department within the same organization depending upon the kind of jobs to be filled. The number of steps in the procedure and the sequence of steps also vary.
For instance, some organizations do not hold preliminary interviews, tests or screenings, whereas in some organizations, such as commercial banks preliminary tests are given to eliminate a large number of applicants. Similarly, in some cases, a medical examination is given before final selection and in some others, a medical check-up follows the final selection. Thus, every organization designs a selection procedure that suits its requirements. However, the main steps that could be incorporated in the
the selection procedure is as under:
(i) Preliminary Interview
In most organizations, the selection program begins with a preliminary interview or screening. The preliminary interview is generally brief and does the job of eliminating totally unsuitable candidates. The preliminary interview offers advantages not only to the organization but also to the applicants. If an applicant is eliminated at this stage, the organization will be saved from the expenses of processing him through the remaining steps of the selection procedure and the unsuitable candidate will be saved from the trouble of passing through the long procedure. The preliminary interview may take place across the counter in the organization’s employment office. It may consist of a short exchange of information with respect to the organization’s interest in hiring and the candidate’s inquiry. Candidates who pass this screening are usually asked to fill in the application form.
(ii) Receiving Applications
Whenever there is a vacancy, it is advertised or inquiries are made from suitable sources, and applications are received from the candidates. Standard application forms may be drawn up for different jobs and supplied to the candidates on request. The application form is useful for several reasons. It gives a preliminary idea of the candidate to the interviewer and helps him in formulating questions to get more information about him.
(iii) Screening of Applications
After the applications are received, they are screened by a screening committee and a list is prepared of the candidates to be interviewed. Applicants may be called for an interview on some specific criteria, like sex, desire age group, experience, and qualifications. The number of candidates to be called for an interview is normally five to seven times the number of the posts to be filled up. The screened applications are then reviewed by the Personnel Manager and interview letters are dispatched by registered post or under the certificate of the post.
(iv) Employment Tests
Individuals differ in almost all aspects one can think of. They differ with respect to their physical characteristics, capacity to work, level of mental ability, and their likes and dislikes, and also with respect to their personality traits. The pattern of physical, mental, and personal variables gives rise to thousand and one combinations and the particular pattern makes the individual suitable for several classes of activities, jobs, or fields of work.
(v) Employment Interview
Although applications and employment tests provide a lot of valuable information about the candidate, they do not provide the complete information required of the applicant. The interview may be used to get more information about the candidate. For the selection of the right type of people, an employment interview is very important. The communication skill of the candidate can be judged in such an interview.
(vi) Checking References
A referee is potentially an important source of information about a candidate’s ability and personality if he holds a responsible position in some organization or has been the boss or employer of the candidate. Prior to the final selection, the prospective employer normally makes an investigation on the references supplied by the applicant and undertakes more or less a thorough search into the candidate’s past employment, education, personal reputation, financial condition, police record, etc.
(vii) Medical Examination
The pre-employment physical examination or medical test of a candidate is an important step in the selection procedure. Though in the suggested selection procedure, the medical test is located near the end, this sequence need not be rigid. The organizations may place the medical examination relatively early in the process so as to avoid time and expenditure to be incurred on the selection of medically unfit persons. Some organizations either place the examination relatively early in the selection procedure or they advise the candidates to get themselves examined by a medical expert so as to avoid disappointment at the end.
(viii) Final Selection and Appointment Letter
After a candidate has cleared all the hurdles in the selection procedure, he is formally appointed by issuing him an appointment letter or by concluding with him a service agreement. Generally, the candidates are not appointed on a permanent basis because it is considered better to try them for a few months on the job itself. This is because no procedure of selection is complete in itself to find out the whole picture of the personality and qualities of a candidate.