Academic journal article Review of Business

Using Student Perceptions and Job Characteristics to Recruit Recent Graduates

Academic journal article Review of Business

Using Student Perceptions and Job Characteristics to Recruit Recent Graduates

Article excerpt

Recruiting is an important human resource management activity that should result in a pool of qualified job candidates to match up with specific job vacancies within an organization. The process has traditionally involved hiring and keeping the most qualified people. According to Holland [1], however, it is not enough to select people solely on the basis of job relevant skills, knowledge and abilities. To be considered the best candidates, these individuals should also be compatible with the corporate environment in order to minimize turnover, prolong tenure and reduce long term hiring costs such as recruiting. Thus, the most qualified person may not be the best person to hire for a given position. Finding the right person for the job requires matching individual personalities to the organizational environment resulting in returns to both the individual and to the firm in the long run. These returns range from an improved quality of work life and high levels of performance, to company loyalty and a willingness to sacrifice short run personal goals for the long-term goals of the corporation.

To say that recruiting is a costly and complex process that will ultimately impact the firm's bottom line is an understatement. Like any other business activity, it requires top management's support and cooperation. Visionary CEOs know that the people in the firm are the firm's most important assets, assets that may well make the difference between future success and failure for firms competing in a global market place. The best way to recruit these human resources is to market the firm using ad copy as a media. In order to attract the right kind of candidates, the firm must understand its own needs as determined by job analyses, personnel planning and selection criteria. But perhaps even more important, the firm must understand the job candidate's needs, preferences and views if the firm is to be successful in attracting the right recruits, that is, those willing to relocate, retrain, and do what is best for the corporation. The challenge for corporate recruiters is to market their firm to potential employees including graduating business students.

We have all heard the saying that, "First impression are the most lasting." Quite often, a candidate's first impression of a firm is obtained by reading one of its job advertisements. Thus, the content of the job ad is of utmost importance if the firm is to be successful in soliciting the best recruits to apply for a particular job opening. Recruiters responsible for writing the ad copy must use their writing skills to inform the candidates of certain critical attributes of the job. They can do this by providing information about the quality of work life, the corporate environment, and the job itself. Well written job ads inform the candidates about what they might expect if they agree to work for the company; for example, general levels of pay, existing and future opportunities for career growth and development, and a description of the kinds of people currently employed by the firm. The candidate's attraction to one company over another also depends on how effective the ad copy conveys the organizational culture, reward systems and career opportunities.

Thus, a dual set of needs must be accounted for within the copy of the ad. First, the job relevant duties and the companion skills, knowledge and abilities needed to carry them out are included. Second, the financial and non-financial rewards that will satisfy individual needs, such as job security or interesting work, must also be included. Such ads will enable firms to recruit individuals that match the firm's work environment.

While much has been written about the selection process from a corporate perspective, very few researchers have approached a study of the employment decision using job attributes preferred by graduating business students. Posner[2] (1981) investigated the requisite job applicant's characteristics and the desirable job factors that recruiters believed were important to students. …

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