Magazine article Personnel

Technology Makes Selection More Efficient and Accurate

Magazine article Personnel

Technology Makes Selection More Efficient and Accurate

Article excerpt

By now, most HR professionals know how employee selection should be done: Analyze the job to determine the job content and requirements; review these requirements to determine what qualifications are needed; make sure the prospective candidate has what your company needs; and extend an offer to an appropriate candidate.

Determining what HR is hiring for serves as the foundation of the hiring process. But professionals often overlook this step or pay little attention to it. And guidelines under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) will force HR to scrutinize each and every job description to comply with the law starting next year.

Updating good job descriptions is easier said than done. Let's face it, collecting complete and accurate job information can be a real pain in the cerebral cortex. This problem is compounded when HR starts shooting at a moving target. No sooner are jobs pegged, then the work group, department or company decides to reorganize job responsibilities. These reorganizations are occurring at a faster rate due to today's competitive pressures, shortened product life, growing need for customer responsiveness and changing technology. Job requirements that were crucial a few years ago may have been replaced by completely new requirements. Responsibilities previously handled by a position may have been reshuffled among other jobs within the company. Technology to the rescue How can HR keep up more effectively? The answer lies in technology In fact, technology helped to create the problem, but it can be used to manage the problem.

Most HR departments took the first step during the past decade. The advent of word processors changed the mechanics of updating job descriptions. But limiting automation and systematization of human resources management to faster modification of documents would be akin to limiting travel to trains after the emergence of air travel.

Computer databases of job information provide a more cost- and time-efficient alternative for using job information in the selection process. The application of computer database technology can streamline the process of identifying critical job content as well as the process of determining the essential job competencies.

Jobs do not spring out of nowhere; they are usually variations of work previously done. A new ob may have a different combination of responsibilities than it had before with some new components, but in most cases, the pieces of the work have existed within the organization before, sometimes in other jobs. Storing these pieces of job information in a database can form the basis for a dictionary or catalog of critical job requirements that you can tap easily when necessary. …

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