Recruitment and Selection Essay

Table of contents


In the twenty-first century, organisations face an intense competitive environment. In order to compete effectively against their rivals organisations have to be indulged in the strengthening of their performance unceasingly. Managers are obliged to go beyond their required duties. Thus they require applying and using alternative ways for their organisations develop, move and learn faster compared to their rivals. “Organisational resources and capabilities that are rare and creating value in a unique way are required such that it’s not easily copied” (Barney, 1986; 1991; 1995). This is called the resource-based view, which states that ‘competitive advantage of a firm lies mainly in the use of the package of valuable resources used by an organisation’ (Conner, 1991; Wernerfeldt, 1984). Thus for a company to gain competitive advantage, it is vital for the latter to manage their capital, financial or human resources efficiently. All financial and capital resources of an organisation are solely managed by the organisations’ human capabilities (employees). Therefore it is vital that an organisation has a skilled, committed and ‘strategic partner’ (employee whose performance align HR and business strategy).

Human resource can be describe as the aggregated skills, knowledge, talents, ability to create, the workforce of an organisation’s values, along with their talents and aptitudes, approaches and beliefs involved. HR professionals should be able to apply best practices of HR. Pfefer (1994) has suggested that “participation, empowerment, incentive pay, promotion from within, and training and skill development are some of the best practices”. HR managers derive new policies and procedures taking into account HR functions in order to have better empowerment and achieve the organisation’s goal. HR functions are recruitment and selection and placement of personnel, training and development by maintain motivation, appraisal of performance and feedback counselling, transfer and job rotation, compensation and benefits (salary, cash and non-cash benefits), social security and welfare of employees, contract negotiation and grievance handling, health and safety, employee and labour relationship, auditing and review of the man-power management within the firm and ensure quality work life and firm’s development.

HR main function interrelationship in most organisations:

Recruitment & Selection

The first and foremost function of HR is Recruitment and Selection of employees as and when required. It can arise due to expansion, strategic alliances (merger and acquisitions), delayering (the need of reducing management due to downsizing or reduction of cost of the organisation) and promotion or someone leaving or temporary requirement. Rynes (1991); Rynes & Cable (2003) outlined that ‘recruitment is the utilization of an organisation’s practices such that the number and types of applicants are influenced to apply for vacancies’. Thus recruitment can be described as the process in which an organisation is indulged such that applicants are attracted to apply for any vacancies arising and selecting the appropriate candidates and ensure that they are armed with the suitable training such that they are able to perform at an optimal level. Recruitment can be internal or external focussed.

Whereas Selection has been best described by Roberts (1997) defined as

“The purpose of the selection is to match people to work. It is the most important element in any organization’s management of people simply because it is not possible to optimise the effectiveness of human resources, by whatever method, if there is a less than adequate match.” (Robert, 1997)

Hence the way that information is collected and evaluated about the candidate and select the appropriate applicant in order to extend employment offer is termed as selection and it is always performed under legal and environmental constraints and also highlights interest of the individual and the organisation.

Once recruitment and selection is over, training is enforced in order the staff is able to perform in accordance to the organisation’s procedures where the vision and mission of the company is also clearly outlined.

Human Resource Management (HRM) has recently been changed into a macro perspective of HRM and been termed as Strategic Human Resource Management (SHRM), (Delery & Doty, 1996).Thus in order for HR policies to be effective, it have to be consistent with other aspects of the organisation. In other words SHRM highlights the very importance of HR practices for a firm’s performance (Delery & Doty, 1996).

Further Dessler (2008, p.86) demarcated SHRM

“The formulation and execution of human resource policies and practices that produce the employee competencies and behaviours the company need to achieve its strategic aims”.

Pfeffer (1994) best practices

“ These best practices are employment security, selectivity in recruiting, high wages, incentive pay, employee ownership, information sharing, participation and empowerment, teams and job redesign, training and skill development, cross-utilization and cross-training, symbolic egalitarianism, wage compression, promotion from within, long-term perspective, measurement of the practices, overarching philosophy”

SHRM objectives are to utilise the best practices and achieve the following:

Ensure company’s goals are achieve
Effective utilisation and maximisation development of HR
Respecting, identifying and satisfying individuals’ needs
Reconciling the employees goals and that of the firm
Provision of well-trained and well-motivated staffs
Morale of staffs are kept high
Ensuring that job satisfaction and self-actualisation is attained to its maximum
Develop and maintain quality of work life
Developing personality of staffs in its multidimensional aspect.
Staff capabilities being enhance to perform actual job
To be responsive at the ethical and social needs of the society
Ensure staffs are equipped precisely and clearly in the transaction of business
Team spirit being inculcate such that team work and inter-team collaboration is gained

SHRM objectives are vital objectives in an organisation as it directly relates to the performance and competitive advantage of the firm. Competitive advantage is attained through continuous HRM and the business strategy being outlined from the outset. Business strategy has been described as the art of and crafting, implementing and the evaluation of cross-functional decisions that allows a firm realise its long-term goals. Whereby the specification of vision, mission and objectives policies and plans being developed and finally allocating resources to implement policies, plans and projects.

An inter-related relationship between HRM and Business Strategy can be illustrated as follows:

Administrative Elements

Of HRM which are transferable between organisation

Firstly the above diagram indicates that it should all start with the inner circle vision, values, objectives and strategies of the organisation. In other words the organisation should set its vision, objectives and then strategies of the organisation firstly. Subsequently the HR roles should be assigned in alignment with the strategic decisions taken when objectives and strategies are set. For the strategic decisions outlined, the organisation’s HR policies are varyingly set and differ from organisation to organisations. Administrative elements of HRM which are transferable between organisations are the grey-blue outer circle.

Hence the diagram clearly outline that the interrelationship of the business strategy, HR practices and HRM.

Ulrich (1997) has mentioned in regards to SHRM and highlighted how HR professionals can be a strategic partner within an organisation. This can be achieved by professional working in accordance to managers who have set up strategies and process such that objectives and set targets are attained by the department to meet requirements of the ultimate business.

While managing an organisation frameworks are set and in accordance to Delery and Doty (1996) the three within SHRM namely universalistic, contingency perspective and configurationally approach. They have established that the three mentioned perceptions are feasible theories within SHRM however they have separate outcome on the firm’s performance and its strategy and HR practices.

The universalistic perspective

Here the best practices of HR are being referred. “The best practices have been mentioned previously and they vital to a firm when undertaking strategy implementation so that sustainable competitive advantage is gained by the organisation” (Huselid, 1993; Pfeffer1994). It is also the simplest theoretical statement in SHRM. Here the argument is that the connections in regards to independent and dependable variables are universal across the firms. The universalistic approach can be established by proceeding with the two following steps:

Identification of strategic HR practices
The urge of looking for the arguments in relation to the practices and the firm’s performance.

Pfeffer (1994) mention sixteen best ones but on the on other hand Delery and Doty (1996) outlines only seven which has been mentioned before.

The contingency perspective

When comparing the universalistic to the contingency perspective, the contingency is more complex as it considers the interaction of instead the linear relations only.

Primarily the contingent factor of an organisation is the business strategy and using this perspective, investigators will have to opt for theories for the organisation’s strategy. Afterwards specification of how the interaction of each HR practices will effect along with the strategy and if enhancement of the organisation performance is attained.

The configurational perspective

Delery and Doty (1996) has debated upon this approach as the most complex one.

Since this perspective does not exclusively focus on internal resources nor on an organisation’s environment but on the shared influence of a set variables.

The unique pattern or the configurations are identified which is assumed to be most effective for an organisation (Delery & Doty, 1996). Hence it models the interrelationships.

Linking Company-Wide and HRM strategies

In the figure below, Dessler (2007) has elaborated on the process and how HR strategies and corporate strategies go along side of each other ‘hand in hand’.

Strategic situations are brought along by the competitiveness, internal strength and weaknesses of the organisation whereby strategic plans are formulated. While formulating the strategies various questions arise. For instance, how cost can be lowered such that profits are maximised, when or where it is best to expand and is there the requirement for diversification. Further the HR strategies which will be formulated and implemented should comply with the overall corporate strategies.

The recruitment and selection, training and development, appraisal of employees are required to be synced such that it supports the strategic plan of the organisation.

The very question of how well does company strategies are aligned to the HR strategies formulated and applied will directly have effect on the organisation overall performance.

The main aim of this model above is to appraise the HR strategies and corporate Strategies alignment. Organisational performance and strategic situation are normally not included in the purpose. But we have taken them into consideration as they are of vital role within the process of aligning. That is due to the fact that the strategic planning’s outcome is the strategic situation and it is essential if in case the constructed plan by the firm does not fit the strategic situation expected. This can affect the HR strategies and the firm’s performance at the end adversely.

Managerial Competencies

Firstly, Westley & Mintzberg, (1989), in Lado & Wilson, (1994) has described that “Managerial Competencies includes exclusive capabilities of the leaders in propagating the strategic vision, communicating the vision and investing in the employees such that the firm is able to realise the vision”. Hence this capability can give rise a very useful environment for the firm. Enacting this organisational environment gives the employees a way to interpret and act upon the vision that was conveyed. The managerial view is seen as a source of competitive advantage due to its decisive nature upon the organisations resources (Lado & Wilson, 1994). Thus one of the HR systems that can enhance this competence is development and creation of managerial competencies. Top managers and middle managers are utilised in the creation of the strategic vision and the managerial competencies are let through the organisation (Lado & Wilson, 1994). Thus the traditional view of effective communication and ease the interpretation and understanding of the vision is vital.

Strategic human resource challenges

Thus from the above it is obvious if these challenges must be made primary and achieved and also much more focus must be made on designing not only execution of strategies.


Hence it is obvious that recruitment and selection is only effective when it complement with HRM strategies and business strategies. As the recruiting of highly qualified and skilled employees cannot achieve anything unless they are armed with the appropriate tools, practices and procedures which are closely managed by HRM within the organisation. The interrelationship between recruitment and HRM and the overall business has been explicitly explained above but the effects of poor recruitment can result in high costs incurred in terms of time of money and time, inefficiency, client dissatisfaction and disability in team work and low morality. Hence not only recruitment and selection needs to be effective but also proper training and appraisals to maintain level of performance and appropriate rewards and benefits are required to motivate the employees to maintain a high level of performance. Whilst the SHRM should maintain a regular high level of assessment throughout the employees performance, environment and other factors affecting directly and ensure that the objectives and the business vision is achieved within the set period. As under the current economic climate businesses tend to cut down on the size such that they can survive thus they should be able to trust be able to rely on effective HRM. A recent example is the Icon Film Distribution Ltd which was taken over by Stewart Till and Access industries and because of the economic situation prevailing in UK and their performance in the film market they have opted to downsizing.


Schuler, R. S., & Jackson, S. E. (1987). Linking competitive strategies with human resource practices. Academy of Management Executive, 1, 207-219.

Pfeffer, J. 1994. Competitive advantage through people: Unleashing the power of the work force.

Boston: Harvard Business School Press.

Rogers, E. W., & Wright, P. (1998). Measuring organizational performance in strategic human resource management research: Problems, prospects, and performance information markets.

Human Resource Management Review, 8, 311-331.

Elearn Limited (2005) “Recruitment an selection”, Elsevier Ltd, Oxford, UK.

Colakoglu, S., lepak, D. P., Hong, Y. (2006). Measuring HRM effectiveness: considering multiple stakeholders in a global context. Human Resource Management Review. 16, 209-218.

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