A scientific Approach to Recruitment and Selection: The Case of Cyber Gates.
Aya Mihyar (20160043)
Eman Farhan (20160050)
Mishal awad (20150741)
Dr. Amro MadadhaHuman Resource Management
Cyber Gates is an IT company based in Jordan and uses traditional methods of recruitment and selection in hiring new staff members. Because of the rapid growth of the company, the need for a more systemized approach of recruitment and selection. The HR department designed and implemented a new approach to recruitment and selection based on scientific research and methodology. The results of implementing this approach were promising and effective according to reports from line managers to the high management of the company. More future research is needed to cover other areas of recruitment and selection to reach more talented candidates for open positions in the company.
Cyber Gates is an IT company based in Jordan that provides IT solutions by designing software and mobile applications for a variety of clients. The core business of the company is to integrate information technologies in people’s lifestyles, starting from small mobile applications to designing backend solutions for customized devices. The company was launched in 2014 and sells its products in the MENA market. Cyber Gates has a vision of expanding its offices to be in every country in the region. The company’s mission is to provide high quality products with competitive prices to clients. The company also have more than 60 employees working in different departments. There are plans for expansion and increasing the number of employees in each department.
Problem of the study
The company grew and became in need to recruit more staff members to cover the projects it runs. The previous methods used by the company in recruitment and selection depended on referrals from existing employees and ad hoc recruiting. These methods are now old fashioned and unsystematic to match the growth and needs of the company. Many employees were hired based on no-scientific approaches and the opinion of the management, which led to negative outcomes with different employees. Some employees were not as the management expected and their production was different with no self-development or improvement. Therefore, the management of the company decided to use a scientific and systematic approach to recruitment and selection.
The Human Resources Management department is an important unit in any company. There is a great responsibility on this department to support management to achieve the company’s objectives. According to Mullins (2010), the success and effectiveness of the Human Resource Management (HRM) depends on the consistent levels of teamwork and the ongoing co-operation and consultation between line managers and the HR managers. Cyber Gates realized the importance of this issue and the management of the company decided to assign the HR department the task to develop recruiting and selecting plans to hire employees. The vision of this task is to build teams of employees who will prove to be long tenured and productive employees. The management seeks to find employees who fit the corporate culture of Cyber Gates and its various divisions.
The problem of not having an organised system for recruiting staff may backfire on the level of production of the company. The company will have employees who may not fit into its culture or even do not match at all. Moreover, the non-systemized approach of recruiting may result in different kinds of discrimination and misjudgement. For example, many organisations have gender or ethnic issues when it comes to recruiting, which is against international standards. In addition, recruiting employees by just following managers’ judgment may not seem a professional method of recruiting, and the company will end up with different teams in departments with different visions. Therefore, the best way to solve such a problem is to build a scientific approach to recruitment and selection.
Cyber Gates decided to assign the HRM department to build up a recruitment plan to match the needs of the company. The solution was based on developing a scientific approach according to research into recruitment and selection theories and best practices among organisations all over the world. This approach is based on a systemized process of recruiting and selecting staff members. The first step is to identify open positions by specifying job descriptions and job roles for each position. There are two approaches to be followed in writing the job description; job analysis approach and competency based approach. The job description done by HRM team helps line managers to find the best candidates for the positions in their departments. The job analysis provides with the requirements of the job and its suitability within the organisations structure, which then attracts suitable candidates (Heraty & Morley, 1998). According to Caruth et al (2009), there are important information that HR teams should collect to generate an effective job analysis. These information include job duties (tasks); job purpose and responsibilities; equipment used; control of the work nature and methods of supervision; performance standards/expected outputs; relationships and interactions with others; position in the structure (organisational relationship); environment job performed in and physical factors (e.g. outdoors, requires heavy lifting); and education, training, experience and personal attributes needed (Caruth et al, 2009).
The second approach is to form competency frameworks for best candidates to fit in the job. Competencies are underlying characteristics of a person, which result in effective and superior performance in a job (Boyzatis, 1982). One of the helpful approach used to decide competencies is Roberts’s (2005) PERSON specification, which includes the personal qualities and attributes that are components of a person’s character, e.g. important characteristics such as creativity, resilience, authenticity, social skills, etc. The Northwestern University in Chicago, IL, formulated three types of competences to be included in job descriptions: skills, knowledge and behaviour. Skills include the abilities needed in order to execute the job duties, e.g. interpersonal skills, software and computer skills or other skills necessary in the candidate to be able to lead a team in a department. Knowledge in the field related to the job is necessary to perform well. The behaviour aspect is related to the characteristics of an employee, which have to match the policies of the organization (Peregrin, T., 2014).
The selection process follows the recruitment analysis and specifying the needs. The selection process comes after the company has advertised the job position and received applications. There are also different approaches to follow in the process of selection. However, regardless of the selection method the company will follow, they all need to meet certain standards concerning their reliability, validity, interpretability and practicality (Cooper et al. 2003). Reliability means the consistency of measurement, in which all candidates being measured are under the same kind of selection method; for example interviews. Having a reliable method of selection is very important to achieve fair and systemized process. Structured interviews, for example, that follow specifications and procedures are more reliability than unstructured interviews and results in agreement between individuals interviewing candidates (Cooper et al. 2003). The validity of the selection method refers to the accuracy of the measurement. Even with a high reliable method, some results may be inaccurate. Therefore, validity is directly related to the interpretation of results acquired after performing the selection methods. It is important that staff involved in the selection process to make sure that this method “is valid for its intended purpose by providing accurate measurements of the attribute(s) under investigation” (Cooper et al. 2003). Interpretability is related to analysing the results of the selection method. There should be a specific method to interpret candidates’ score and compare them with standards provided by the company in order to grade candidates and facilitates the process of shortlisting (Ballantyne, 2009). Practicability is the last standard of the selection method, which could be measured, according to Cooper et al (2003), from two perspectives: “its perceived usefulness and fairness, and the extent to which it devours organizational resources.” This standard is related to issues of fairness and non-discrimination between candidates.
Following such a systematic and organised approach of recruiting and selecting is of vital importance for companies to achieve their objectives. There is a strong emphasis on the importance of recruitment and selection recently by many organisations all around the world. In study by the IBM Global Human Capital of 2007, four out of five companies express their concerns about not having enough talented people to fill their vacancies in the coming years. There have been also many concerns about the ability of managements to attract, develop and retain employees to be future leaders in their companies (French and Rees 2010). Recruitment and selection are one major aspects of HRM in any organisation. Many people look at these two concepts as the same, but they are different from each other. Recruitment is defined as ‘all the practices and activities carried out by an organisation with the primary purpose of identifying and attracting potential employees’ (Breaugh and Stark, 2000). Selection is defined as ‘the processes and methods of choosing which applicant should be appointed to a vacancy’ (Torrington et al, 2014). The strategies companies plan for recruitment and selection are very important in determining the long-term vision of the whole organisation (Henderson, 2011). According to Hedger (2009), “Being able to make effective assessments also improves efficiency — particularly in organisations that hire large volumes of employees”.
Organisations must develop assessment tools and metrics to help in performing the right process of recruitment and selection. According to Hedger (2009), having the right assessment tools helps in increasing the speed of the recruitment and selection process and in finding the right staff for open positions. This will help the organisation to recruit individuals with the right knowledge, skills and abilities to achieve the organisations objectives while saving the organisation a lot of money in the long run (Raphael, 2010). Building strategic HR metrics is very important, especially when HR policies are integrated with the strategies of the organisation as whole, which will create a ‘high commitment’ and ‘high-performance’ approach to the management of employees (O’ Riordan, 2004).
Cyber Gates decided to follow the above-mentioned approach in recruitment and selection as a strategy of sustainability in its performance. The HR department announced opening positions after performing the required research and job analysis for each position. A job description was issued with metrics of competencies required for each job to help assessors in the selection process. The selection method followed was the structued interviews; face-to-face interviews using same set of questions for each candidate (related to job and person specifications or competency framework). After performing the interviews, the panel prepared a shortlist of candidates, and delivered it to the higher management to meet with chosen candidates and made other procedures.
One of the most important challenges that faced the HR department in performing this approach was the unwillingness of some line managers to change their old methods in choosing members of their departments. As we mentioned before, the company used traditional methods of recruiting and hiring staff, which were based on networking between staff and selecting staff on an ad hoc manner. Change in any policy or regulation of a company that may affect employees or line managers, is always accompanied with obstacles and challenges. Therefore, the HR department reported to the high management the situation, the management of the company decided to follow a strategy of change management to handle the situation. The company management followed some strategies of change management to show staff the importance of the change in recruitment and selection processes and the effectiveness of such change in their departments. The company management ensured line managers that this process of recruitment and selection will not affect their positions or their promotion to higher position in the future.
Results and Recommendations:
The results of applying this new approach of recruitment and selection were positive. The company hired new 14 staff employees in different departments. The company called for a meeting with line managers after three months of hiring the new staff by following the systemized recruitment and selection approach. Line managers expressed their satisfaction with this approach and its future results on the performance of the company. They all agreed that the new staff were chosen in a manner that corresponds with the company culture. The new staff felt that they fit in the company and with the department they work in now. In terms of productivity, line managers reported that the new hired members in their teams were productive and performing their duties in the right manner.
There are some recommendations that the company may consider in the future to improve the recruitment and selection process. For example, the company did not consider online recruitment as an emerging method followed by many organisations around the world. It is important to include policies, procedures and methods for online recruitment and selection in future attempts to attract more talented staff. There is a need also to have a variety of selection methods other than sticking to interviews. The company may consider online or phone interviews. Other methods and techniques could be also used, such as online applications and filtering, or even collaborating with recruitment agencies to find talented candidates for opening positions in continuous bases. References
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