What is selection in HRM

What is the selection? This is the best article for those seeking to learn and get valuable knowledge about the selection. The selection process is another exciting core function in Human Resource Management. Simply, it is the process of choosing the right employee for the organization. In this chapter, we discuss this process briefly. It includes the definition of selection, the importance of, and the selection methods.

Key highlights

  • Definition of selection
  • Importance of selection
  • Selection methods

Definition of selection

When it comes to selecting, it refers to choosing the right job applicant for employment. It means the selection is the process of selecting the most appropriate person who can fill the relevant job vacancy and deliver a valuable contribution to the entity.
The most appropriate means the person who suits them best job recruitments and personal specifications relevant to the specific role. At the end of this process, job applicants are divided into two categories: those who will be offered the job and those who will not be offered the employment. Therefore this function can be perceived as a negative function.

When considering the selection ratio, it refers to the number of job applicants against the number of applications for a particular job. This selection ratio can be calculated for an individual job and the overall ratio for multiple job vacancies. Source of applicants, employer brand, competition, proper advertising channel, and candidate availability are the factors that affect the selection ratio.

Difference between Recruitment and selection

Recruitment is the overall process of identifying and attracting a pool of suitably qualified people to apply for particular employment. In contrast, the selection means choosing the most appropriate person from the pool of applicants.

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The recruitment function can be identified as a positive process, whereas the selection process is called a harmful process.
Nevertheless, both of these recruitment and selection processes are interrelated and play a vital role in achieving organizational goals and objectives.

Importance of selection

This HRM function is essential for the organization because hiring the most appropriate human resources can enhance its performance. An adequate workforce will do business processes effectively, and it is straightforward to conduct training & development programs. The organization will increase the number of products due to the appropriate workforce, and managing people is much more comfortable. So those are the critical reasons for this core function.

With a proper selection process, the entity can get advantages in many ways. Nevertheless, the thing is, if the organization failed to do a proper selection process, it might badly influence the organization. The organization will not be able to accomplish expected job performance from the employee due to wrong selection. The cost of training & development may increase, resource wastages may increase, damage the public relation, damage the goodwill, and the cost of grievance handling may increase. Therefore there will be some harmful effects due to the wrong selection process. However, as a core function in HRM, the selection function is so vital to the organization. Therefore every organization needs to conduct the selection process properly. This process is one of the huge reasons for the success or failure of the organization.

Selection methods in HRM

Organizations use various selection methods to select their most appropriate pool of employees for a particular job. The most commonly used selection methods are application evaluation, employee tests, background investigations, interviews, and assessment centers. An organization uses one or more above methods to select its applicants.

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Application evaluation

In this method, the organization use job applications or resumes to select their most suitable candidates for a particular job. A job application means a sheet or a form with blanks that the job applicant needs to fill out. The job application’s objectives are to collect the necessary information about the job applicant, including the job description and the job specification. Most organizations use this method to select the most suitable job applicants, and it is straightforward to screen out which applicants do not meet the minimum job requirements and who are the best applicants for the job. Moreover, the application evaluation may be used to conduct interviews successfully, compare job applicants’ qualifications, and prepare personal files.

Employee tests

Employee tests are one of the best methods to understand a job applicant’s capacity that adjusts with the job requirements. With the help of employee tests, the organization will identify how much a candidate can adapt to the job environment’s various situations.
There are different types of employee tests, such as knowledge tests, aptitude tests, psychological tests, proficiency, and practical tests.

Background investigation

Background investigation or background screening refers to a particular investigation to understand the applicants’ factual background. This method helps to select honest and reasonable employees to perform a particular job. The primary purpose of this background screening is to identify the actual type of person the candidate was. Also, this background screening is known as pre-employment screening. Academic investigations, employment investigation, personal investigation, and financial investigation are examples of this selecting method.


Interviews are the most using selection method in an organization. , an interview can be defined as a formal conversation between two parties to know about each other. When it comes to a job interview, it means a formal conversation between the management and the job applicant where the management (interviewer) asks questions from the job applicant (interviewee) to get information. The interviewer will identify the interviewee’s skills, basic knowledge, abilities, character, interests, and personality by conducting interviews. The objectives of an interview are as follows,

  • Provide information about the job to the candidate
  • Identify skills, knowledge, and the personality of candidates.
  • Provide information about the organization
  • To build the company image.
  • To verify the information given in the job application.
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Assessment Centre

The assessment centers are a new method of selecting for a particular job vacant. It is a program with several techniques, and this method is commonly used to select candidates for senior positions. An assessment Centre is not only a method of assessing a job applicant, but also it is a behavior-based evaluation process. read more about assessment Centre


  • As a function of human resource management, selection plays a vital role in the organization. Simply the selection is choosing the most suitable candidate or candidates from the pool of applicants. This function is so essential to the organization because by selecting the most suitable candidates, the organization will able to enhance its organizational performance.
  • When there is a well-planned selection process, the organization will get advantages in many ways. However, if the organization failed to conduct this process correctly, it may badly impact the organization.
  • Organizations use different methods to select their job applicant. The methods include employee tests, interviews, application evaluation, and assessment centers. Among these methods, interviews are the most commonly used selection method for selecting suitable candidates for a particular job.

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