Managers are often tasked with optimising human performance in the workplace. Generally, management executives and Human Resource professionals agree that for an organisation to be able to compete, it must have at its disposal skilled, qualified and experienced individuals. This starts by attracting the most talented and skilled individuals to participate in the organisation’s selection process, hiring the most suitable individual(s) for the given position(s) and eventually training them in line with the skills that they need to acquire and do not happen to possess at that point in time. For more information on these areas, please also refer to our Personality Profiling section, our Training Needs Analysis section and our Training section.
At this stage, one of the processes most overlooked by organisations is to dedicate sufficient time and resources to clearly identify what the elements of the job are and what skills and capabilities the ideal candidate should have to perform adequately on the job. This is the process of conducting a thorough job analysis where a job is subdivided into elements, such as tasks, through the application of a formalised, systematic procedure for data collection, analysis and synthesis. Analysing and identifying what the ideal individual should possess in terms of skill, as well as the contribution he or she would add to the workplace, is essential to progressing with organisational recruitment efforts. Furthermore, without being discriminatory, one should also consider the type of person that is likely to fit within the specific role. Once all this information is compiled, a recruitment strategy is then put together to clearly identify the ideal candidate and the most effective method to attract candidates to the organisation.
At the selection stage, there are considerable psychological decisions that need to be made and which organisations, at times, tend to overlook. A case in point is the kind of selection tools that an organisation should adopt. What techniques and methods are available to predict an individual’s performance on the job and how reliable (consistency of the judgment made) and valid (predicting job success) can they be? Despite the fact that interviews have, for many years, often been a traditional selection method, interviews are considered to be rather subjective, unreliable, subject to bias and able to predict job performance by as little as 1.9%. However, progress in psychological research has demonstrated that if a structured interview is administered, as opposed to unstructured interviews, the validity may increase to 39%. This example and many others are the psychological considerations that managers at different stages of the recruitment and selection process must consider.
In addition to the interview as a method of selection, there are other psychometric assessments that can be utilised. Psychometric assessments are a formal, structured exercise designed by psychologists to measure psychological qualities such as cognitive ability and personality. Such assessment methods have been extensively employed to predict job performance on the basis of personality and intelligence. They are carefully researched and tested to ensure that they are fair, reliable and valid. They are administered and scored in a standardised way, allowing results to be compared with people who have taken the tests before. The validity of personality measures as predictors of job performance accounts for approximately 15% of performance variance while that of cognitive tests may range from 14% to 32%. This brief insight into the research of personnel recruitment and selection has impacted the body of scientific research that exists in this area. Nevertheless, this body of knowledge is only used scantily by managers within organisations.
Equinox has long been active in the area of recruitment and selection of personnel for companies in Malta and internationally. We can guide you through the maze of adopting best practice approaches to recruiting and selecting the right people for your organisation depending on the type of profile you need to fill in.
Apart from advising you with best practice approaches for your recruitment and selection processes, we also offer the following services:
An assessment centre consists of a standardised evaluation of behaviour based on multiple inputs. Several trained observers and techniques are used. Judgments about behaviour are made, the preponderance of which from specifically-developed assessment simulations. These judgments are discussed in a meeting among the assessors or by a statistical integration process. In an integration discussion, comprehensive accounts of behaviour (and often ratings of it) are pooled together. The discussion results in evaluations of the assessees’ performance on the dimensions or other variables that the assessment centre is designed to measure.
Personality assessment generally takes the form of a questionnaire, and although they are sometimes referred to as personality tests, there is no right or wrong answer. Psychometric measures of personality are based on the assumption that we can quantitatively assess and numerically measure human attributes. In doing so we are not measuring ability (i.e. how competent an individual is in doing a particular task) but typical behaviour. This means that an attempt at numerically predicting and determining how recruits would typically behave on the work place can be made, and the results are usually very accurate. In this respect, research has developed a model of personality founded on five distinct clusters (the so-called Big Five traits), namely Openness, Conscientiousness, Extraversion, Agreeableness and Neuroticism. Each distinct cluster has been empirically found to predict job success in different job roles. Conscientiousness, for example, is linked to performance across all job types, while links between extraversion and performance in sales and managerial jobs have also been reported.
Recruitment and Selection Training
This 8-hour training programme is intended for managers, executives and supervisors who are involved in some area of human resources (HR) or who have recently joined the HR department or are considering starting a career in HR. The training program consists of the following:
- An introduction to the topic of recruitment and selection
- The importance of job analysis
- Effective recruitment
- The interview and its uses
- Psychometric testing
- Selection methods
- Adverse impact and ethical issues during interviews
- Employment law in Malta and the EU.
Cognitive Ability Testing