The selection process involves evaluating and hiring qualified applicants for open positions. A specific methodology is used for collecting information about an applicant in order to determine if that individual should be hired. The following summarizes several selection methods available to employers.
Interviewing is one aspect of the total selection process that aims to uncover as much relevant information and evidence as possible through personal interaction with the applicant. More specifically, it provides the opportunity for the mutual exchange of information. Similar to reference checking, it can be a valuable method of obtaining first-hand information and evidence concerning an applicant’s qualifications and suitability for the position. Simultaneously, it enables the applicant to obtain further information about the position and the company to enable him/her to make an informed decision as to whether or not there is a proper fit.
Notwithstanding these benefits, companies must make a reasonable effort to minimize opportunities for bias and stereotypes to enter the interview process. They also need to ensure that interview questions used are job-related. Thomas H. Nail, SPHR and Dale Scharinger, Ph.D., authors of Guidelines on Interview and Employment Application Questions suggest, “the guiding principle behind any question to an applicant is, can the employer demonstrate a job-related necessity for asking the question? It is the intent behind the question that is important, as well as how the information is used that the EEOC would examine to determine if any discrimination has occurred.” Industry experts suggest that employees involved in the selection process should be trained to prepare for and conduct interview sessions in a legal manner. Topics covered should include, at a minimum: the appropriate use of different types of interview methods, how to develop and use selection criteria and related documents in evaluating applicants, acceptable and unacceptable questions, how to eliminate biases and stereotyping, and how to put the applicant at ease during the interview.”