Reliability and Validity of Selection Process

People and money are the two key resources for an organization. ‘Human beings are the lifeblood of any enterprise. They are the company’s most vital asset’ (Plumbley, 1976). Recruitment and selection have been the important human resource functions of an organization which are been thought of matching process between applicants and enterprises. Selection process begins as the job advertisement and receiving the reply from the applicant or some unsolicited enquiries.

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In order to catch the suitable candidates and obtain the right person for the job, HR should make a series of obstacles to eliminate applicants from the contention. For example, application forms, tests and interviews can evaluate the applicants’ skills, abilities, relative to the job and so on. To judge the effectiveness of any stage of selection process, two statistical concepts have been of particular importance, Reliability and Validity. An organisation has two key resources, people and money..

Recruitment and Selection comprise the important HR functions of the organization and should be thought of as a matching process. Selection commences as soon as the applicant responds to an advertisement or makes an unsolicited enquiry. One way to look at the selection process is to view it as a series of obstacles that applicants must clear in order to obtain the job. Each successive obstacle eliminates some applicants from contention. For example, applicant skills can be evaluated through application forms, interviews, tests, and reference checks, letters of recommendation or reference, and physical examinations.

To judge the effectiveness of any selection technique two statistical concepts have been of particular importance, Reliability and Validity. We are going to examine briefly these two key factors and how they influence the process of selection of staff in this essay. Reliability is the consistency of measurement, or the degree to which an instrument measures the same way each time it is used under the same condition with the same subjects (www. technetium. cen. brad. ac. uk). In short, it is the repeatability of the measurement.

We can illustrate it with the example, if an applicant was being interviewed by two managers for a job in two separate interviews, the interview technique should provide some data so that the interviewers agreed with each other about the applicant as an individual. Alternatively, if a number of candidates are given the same selection test, the test should provide consistent results concerning individual differences between candidates. The statistical analysis of selection techniques normally provides a reliability coefficient which if closer to 1. 0, more dependable the technique.

Reliability improves as we increase the number of relevant items that are combined to generate a value. If we wanted to measure maths ability, we could give all candidates one math problem. We would then be able to separate our pool into two groups; those that answered correctly and those that did not. If we were to ask two problems, we would be able to sort the group into four groups and we would have more confidence that the group that answered both questions correctly possessed higher maths ability. Thus our confidence in overall measure would increase as we added each new item.

In practice, single item measurements have demonstrated very poor reliability and yield limited information while multiple item measurements yield superior reliability and more information. Three or four well-constructed items can yield a reasonably reliable measurement. The following table illustrates the implications for evaluating screening approaches. Validity is the strength of our conclusions, inferences or propositions. More formally, defined as the ‘best available approximation to the truth or falsity of a given inference, proposition or conclusion’. (Cook and Campbell, 1979) In short, were we right?

Types of Validity Criterion-related validation is demonstrated by a correlation coefficient that indicates a significant relationship between scores on the selection measure and job performance scores. There are two types of criterion-related validity. Predictive validation is an empirical relationship between scores on the selection measure taken prior to persons being hired and, after roughly six months or more, their job performance scores. Concurrent validation is an empirical relationship between scores on the selection measure given to current employees and their job performance scores.

Predictive validation is superior to concurrent validation since job applicants will be more motivated to do well on the test than job incumbents will. Also, current employees have learned on the job, and current employees tend to be homogeneous, which will lead to restriction of range and a lower correlation. Content validation is the use of expert judgment to determine whether test items are a representative sample of the kinds of items, situations, or problems that occur on the job.

One means to quantify the degree of content validity is to use a content validation ratio (CVR), in which multiple judges determine whether items are essential or nonessential. The results are placed in a formula and tested for statistical significance. Limitations of content validation are that it is not used in situations when the person learns to do the job after he or she is hired and judges’ ratings are made in reference to concrete behaviours; therefore, content validation is not appropriate when more abstract traits of individuals are being measured. www. rposthuma. utep. edu) The Selection process within most organizations is the foundation of competitive advantage through people. There is a need to create selection processes that will quickly and accurately identify the best potential performers at all levels within an organization, so increasing productivity and innovation hence selection Policies and Practices in my organisation would use clear and defined criteria that will be based on thorough job analysis and will prove to lead to successful job performance.

The process would be transparent and easy to understand and simple to follow. The selection process would be objective and fair for all candidates, irrespective of gender, ethnic background, disability or age and should be carried out by well trained staff for its effectiveness. A training programme will be provided to support the implementation of any selection processes to ensure that best practice is followed at all levels, and that the benefits of the approach are available to all hiring personnel.

A validation and tracking system would be designed to monitor the effectiveness of the selection process, driving continuous improvement and enabling it to adapt quickly to changes in the business. It would also include systems for tracking assessment results to support continuous improvement through monitoring and validation. The techniques in selection of employees will be quite informal.


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