The Interview As a Method Of Selection

Essay by sineadktr3 January 2008

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The author will look at selection techniques, with a particular focus on the interview and will critically evaluate it, in the context of other methods.

The suitability of a candidate can be determined by a number of different selection techniques but a discussion of these techniques needs to include the terms 'suitability', 'validity' and 'reliability' before we can fully understand the relevance of each technique.

Suitability is described as the nature of the job and the responsibilities attaches to it and how well they match the candidate's knowledge skills and abilities. The job and person specification can often divulge considerable information to help determine this match; there are 4 distinct criteria that can be used to help in this process.

Validity, in terms of selection, refers to the extent, which the chosen method used, measures what it is supposed to measure. Reliability refers to whether or not the method is consistent and if other individuals used it, that the same decision would be made.

Taking the interview as an example of a selection method, studies have shown that it scores quite high in terms of predictive validity; on a scale of 1-10 it scores a 6.

Many organisations utilise a variety of selection methods of which the interview is but one. Psychometric testing, work examples, assessment centres and reference letters are all other methods that can be used in conjunction with the interview.

A lot of research has been conducted concerning both the reliability and the validity of the selection interview. Much of the research has placed significant criticism on the interview as an efficient method, however recent studies by Anderson and Shackleton (1993) has highlighted a number of points worth mentioning.

Interviews can be more accurate than recruiters believe. Structured interviews that are based around a planned...