The Finance department
During the session, questions regarding my personal background, credentials, experience, expected salary were being raised. Besides introducing myself and giving details of my strengths and weaknesses, there were several other questions being posed which were related to my personal expectations of the job and the company. The HR executive asked on the subject of my understanding of the company’s culture and the reason for interest in the job. I had to also provide details of the technical skills and knowledge that I possess which suggest my level of proficiency with regards to the job requirements, showing substantiated competency.
Prior to the next session, I was notified of an interview with the Purchasing department’s manager, which was scheduled two days after the preliminary interview. This interview involved the manager and the senior executive of the Purchasing Department, whom which the chosen applicant will be assisting. It started with a formal introduction, somewhat similar to the preliminary interview, where I answered general questions related to my personal background and experience.
I had to explain in detail how my diploma in Business Information Technology, would be beneficial in terms of being able to accomplish my role as a SAP Programming Developer. After which, I was asked about what I knew of the job position and if I was a risk-taker who readily accepts challenging tasks delegated to me. This allowed me to paint a vivid illustration of my capabilities as I have displayed my competence through the tasks assigned to me during my internship with the Finance department.
The second part of the interview included questions which were more in-depth and in relation to how I would perform the job in line to the company’s corporate objectives, based on my past experiences with what I encountered. There were several questions that were posed to me which reflected my past decisions and behaviour. For example, the senior executive asked, ‘Describe your most stressful encounter during your internship. How did you solve the problems you faced? ‘ and another by the manager was, ‘Tell us, about a time when you were facing a disagreement with your co-worker.
What did you do to handle this situation? What was the outcome? What have you learned from that experience, would you do anything differently if you were to be in a similar situation again? ‘ and ‘Please give me an example of a time when you took the initiative to improve a specific work process’. These questions gave an exclusive insight of how I reacted to different situations and my ability to take them under control. After the interview with the manager and senior executive ended, I was led to sit for a programming test which aimed to evaluate my SAP programming skills.
The programming test was designed in a way where I had to complete three requirements, namely debug the system from its defects – minimise the input limitations as well as create a new trial feature to formulate the system to be more efficient. The sample system was similar to what HP was using, but it was modified to test my ability. This job-knowledge test allowed me to show my overall level of familiarity with the system and my ability to complete the tasks within a short period of time, under a relatively stressful situation. After the recruitment and selection process
At the end of the three stages, I was told that the result of my application will be notified to me by the end of the week. Upon receiving a confirmation from the HR department that I had gotten the job position of the Assistant SAP Programmer Developer, I was required to go down to the HP office to sign the employment contract. This contract included the terms of employment, duties and responsibilities, salary, Central Provident Fund (CPF) contributions, working hours, compensation and benefits, restrictive covenant, confidentiality and cessation of employment.
Evaluation of the recruitment and selection processes Employee Referrals ‘One of the most expeditious recruitment sources is a company’s own employee referral program, also known as the word of mouth’ (Arthur, 1998, p. 23). Compton, Morrissey and Nankervis (2001, p. 168) states that ‘referrals of job applicants by the organisation’s existing employees can be a low-cost but very effective method of recruitment’ and also has an advantage because the current employees understand the organisational requirements and has good knowledge of what they job entails.
In HP, where there is the Employee Referral Program, ‘HP employees are encouraged to refer good quality candidates for permanent positions and are entitled to reimbursement of a pre-determined sum if the referred person is employed in a permanent capacity’ (HP Australia 2009). One of HP – India’s senior executive posted onto an IT forum, ‘At HP, we believe that our employees are the people in the best position to recommend a new HP recruit. This is why we have Employee Referral Program that allows you to refer candidates who are passionate about working for Hewlett-Packard. This person could be your friend, relative or acquaintance.
If he or she is successfully hired, you will be rewarded’ (Exforsys 2009). In the event of the employee referral which I experienced, it is especially effective in the IT industry, where there is a severe lack of IT programmers as pointed out by Nass (2007) that ‘this crisis with the shortage of programmers worldwide is starting to get serious’, and similarly Carpen et al. (2009) explored the fact that companies want the best employees available, and are justified in demanding top-notch workers since the quality of a product is compromised by someone with inadequate capabilities.
This validates the fact that through the employee referral system, organisations can better identify the more outstanding employees to fill positions across departments quickly, compared to the traditional methods of recruitment. Due to the competitiveness of today’s IT industries, being able to recruit and retain employees is also very crucial. Philips Technologies, like many other high-tech employers are facing the challenge of potentially losing their key employees to competitors (Carpen et al. 2009).
Thus it is very important to be able to keep employees, and employee referrals not only increase the morale of the recommended employee, it also rewards the employee who made the referral. Preliminary Interview The process of a preliminary screening involves the filling up of an application form as well as preliminary interview with a HR executive. An application form is used in the recruitment process to enable a job candidate to supply information about his or her qualifications, skills, and experience (Thompson 2002). However, they can be used to extract too much information, which may not be relevant to the job.
A preliminary interview gives an employer a gauge at an early stage, whether applicants are suitable candidates for the job position, allowing them to be eliminated, reducing wasted time and effort by removing unqualified individuals. Any misinformation or misinterpretations about the job can be minimised through communication at this stage. Behavioural Event Interview (BEI) ‘A behavioural event interview (BEI) is a structured interview that is used to collect information about past behaviour’ (Cherniss ; Goleman, 2001, p. 96), which allows employers to determine a candidate’s future behaviour.
The purpose of the BEI is to reliably capture the behaviours, thoughts and feelings of a candidate during events that were personally challenging. It is also an operant measure designed to capture naturally occurring behaviour. ‘Behavioural interviews are based on the basis that the most accurate predictor of future performance is past performance in similar situations’ (Thompson, 2002, p. 45). During a behavioural interview, an interviewer will ask questions to elicit real examples of one’s past performance in order to gain insights as to whether they will be successful in the position.
Since past performance is a predictor of future behaviour, a behavioural interview attempts to uncover one’s past performance by asking open-ended questions. Each question helps the interviewer learn about the applicant’s past performance in a key skill area that is critical to success in the position for which the applicant is interviewing. The BEI is a powerful tool for executive selection when emotional competencies are particularly critical, it has also been touted as ‘the fastest, most accurate method to gain knowledge from an interviewee’ (Thompson, 2002, p.
47). The BEI is useful for determining if the applicant has mandatory communicative or social skills which may be necessary for the job, appraising candidates’ verbal fluency especially if the job position requires communication external entities such as clients and assessing the applicant’s job knowledge which is important in displaying level of enthusiasm in the job. Being able to assess a candidate using the BEI is practical in the IT industry, where technology is dynamic and ever-changing.
Through the BEI, employers can predict if candidates are ready and adaptable to changes, and whether they can react promptly to not only face challenges but is a good problem solver. Pre-Employment Tests ‘A variety of different kinds of selection tests – psychological and aptitude are available to assist in the screening of job applicants’ (Compton, Morrisey ; Nankervis, 2001, p. 213). Pre-employment tests which are professionally designed and validated can aid a company’s hiring process by increasing the chances of recruiting candidates who are highly competent and are suitable for the job (Bogardus 2004).
Such tests are relatively free of bias and prejudice and are difficult to cheat on; and they are often very cost effective as their high predictive value helps ensure a good job fit. ‘Well-designed and job-relevant tests can assist the selection process markedly by providing an element of objectivity’ (Compton, Morrisey & Nankervis, 2001, p. 213), and can lead to higher productivity, increased employee retention, reduces costs associated with turnover and increases the defensibility of the hiring process by using objective data (Bogardus 2004).
When properly implemented, a pre-employment testing program can lead to hiring the right person because test results are usually accurate predictors of a candidate’s future job performance. Testing programs are accurate because it is able to determine the extent to which a candidate has the ability to excel on the job. In this scenario, aptitude tests are especially effective because they are accurate predictors of job performance as it is a test of measuring problem solving, ability to learn and apply new information and diagnostic thinking and reasoning.