The most crucial stage in staffing process is the selection. Selection is very crucial because any errors in selection may prove to be costly to the organisation itself. This explains the reason why selection has occupied a place of prominence in the management literature.
Selection is a process of rejection and hence it is called a negative process. It divides the people into two categories viz. those who would be selected and those who would be rejected. A manager should exercise special skill in selecting the candidates.
The process of selecting the candidates for employment in organisations is a long-process. It consists of the following steps:
1. Application blank – Every candidate is required to fill up a blank application which provides a written record of the candidate’s qualifications, etc. It is a traditional widely accepted device for eliciting information from the prospective applicants to enable the management to make proper selection of the candidates. An application blank is a personal history questionnaire.
2. Preliminary interview – To eliminate the unsuitable candidates in the very beginning preliminary interviews of brief duration are conducted. A majority of the applicants would be rejected in this stage. If the applicant is eliminated at this very stage, organisation would be saving from the expenses of processing the candidate further. Even the unsuitable candidate would save himself from the trouble of passing through the long selection procedure.
3. Employment tests – To match the individual’s mental and physical characteristics with the job appropriately, employment tests are essential. Here, intelligent tests, aptitude tests, proficiency tests, personality tests, and tests of interests and hobbies etc. are included. These days psychological tests occupies the place of prominence in these employment tests.
4. Final Interviews – An evaluation interview is perhaps the most crucial step in the selection process. A careful assessment of the candidate is made in the personal interview with the candidate. The purpose of conducting the employment interviews is to assess the candidate’s strengths and weaknesses for the position. Apart from finding out the suitability of the candidate, the face- to-face interview also provides an opportunity to the interviewer to know more about the candidate. At the same time, the candidate would also be in a position to know about the terms and conditions of his employment, organisational policies and the employer-employee relations etc.
5. Background Investigation – Normally, in every curriculum, vitae (bio-data) the candidate is asked to mention the name of references. A referee is potentiality an important source of information about the stability, integrity, and personality of the candidate. Before a candidate is finally selected, organisations prefer to contact the references or dig up into the candidate’s past history, past employment, financial condition, police record, personal reputation etc. which will be helpful in verifying the candidature of the person.
6. Medical examination – The pre-employment physical examination in terms of medical test of a candidate is an important step in the selection process. This examination isolates the medically unfit people from the rest.
7. Final selection and placement – If a candidate has cleared all minor hurdles in the selection procedure he is formally appointed and letter appointment is given to that effect. In the letter of appointment will be stated the terms and conditions of employment (such as pay scale, period of probation, starting salary, allowance and other perquisites, etc.)