Recruitment and Selection in Organizations


By: Site Engineer, Staff

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Recruitment has been defined as the process of search for prospective employees and stimulating them to apply for jobs in the organization.

In other words, it is the act of searching for and obtaining a pool of potential candidates with skills, experience, and desired knowledge in order to allow the organization to pick most suitably qualified people to fill job vacancies against the defined position specifications and descriptions.

After determining the type and the number of personnel required for each position in an organization, the next step is to recruit the personnel.

The objective of recruitment is to stimulate people so that many applications are received for a job vacancy.

Selection, on the other hand, aims at choosing the best applicant from those that apply for the job.


Basically, there are 2 broad sources of obtaining employees.

These are:

1. Internal Sources

This consists of promotions and transfers within the organization. Employees could be promoted from the lower level to a higher one. Also, the employee could be transferred within the organization from one department to another department.

Transfers could either be horizontal or vertical. Where you have employees that have potentials for leadership in the organization, it is better for the entrepreneur to promote such people to positions of higher responsibilities. Filling vacancies internally have its own advantages and disadvantages.

Advantages of internal sources of recruitment are:

  • It motivates the employees. Since the promotion is likely going to be based on hard work, ability to meet set objectives, and the ability to take and accept responsibilities among other criteria, it services as incentives for the personnel.
  • The personnel is already familiar with the system of the organization and so there is no need to waste further time money and energy in induction and orientation.
  • If the staff is promoted within the same department, there would be little need for further training. The training cost is therefore greatly reduced.

Disadvantages of internal sources of recruitment are:

  • Any time subjective methods used, usually inflicted by nepotism and favoritism, may be used instead of objective ways.
  • It narrows down the scope of selection since people from outside the organization that may be more qualified are exempted.

2. External Sources

There are many ways you could get employees from outside your organization.

You could get through:

  • Competing firms in the industry
  • Educational institutions
  • Recommendations from present and former employees
  • Unsolicited applications from prospective employees
  • Public employment agencies
  • Professional bodies
  • Labor unions
  • Private agencies

To make recruitment for top management positions, it may be advisable to look for them from your competitors’ establishments. Since they are already working in the same industries, they would be familiar with the operations of your business. They are therefore likely to be very productive immediately they join the organization.

Where the employee is being sourced from an organization, not in the same industry with the one being established, there is the need for one to make an accurate assessment of the applicant to know whether he would fit into the organization.

Educational institutions could also be a source of recruiting personnel. Graduate students in fields related to business management normally have the prerequisite qualifications that can suit many organizations.

However, before one can get them to work in a small – scale organization they need to be assured of their career prospects in the organization.

Government agencies are potential areas to source for personnel as well. A good number of people do not have job satisfaction in government establishment and may need areas where they can have challenges.

As a general rule, when an entrepreneur is looking for employees outside his organization, it is important that he screens the candidates very well so that he would be able to establish their capabilities with the job requirement.

It is usually very costly getting the best materials for one’s organization but at the end of it all, one would not regret it.

This is because the employees are about the most important asset of any organization. Any amount spent on getting the right caliber of people that can fit the available openings would be money well spent.

Now the question is how do prospective applicants know that an organization wants to recruit personnel?

It can be known through any of the following methods:

  • Advertisement in newspapers, magazines, journals, etc. If specific skills are required, then it may be better if the advertisement is placed in a media that is targeted and ready by people with such types of skills. For instance, if a general manager is required for a construction firm, then the advert can be placed in the media targeted to people within the building industry.

In placing the advert, some information about the company, the job, the job specification and deadline should be included. This allows the prospective applicants to do some self-screening. In the final analysis, only those applicants that are sure of themselves will apply.

  • Sending recruiters to other private and public enterprises. The organization’s staff can go directly to some employment agencies or labor union offices who normally keep records of people that seek employment through them. In developing countries, many employment bureaus are being established to cater to this need.
  • Choosing directly from the unsolicited applications.
  • Advertisement in the electronic media. That is, placing an advertisement on radio and television. The coverage of this type of advert is not a wide as those of the print media.
  • Sending recruiters to educational institutions. This system requires the organization to send its staff to educational institutions when certain skilled personnel is required.

It is better for the entrepreneur to communicate his needs for employees as widely as possible. This is because of the more the number of applicants, the better the opportunity to be able to select the best candidate to suit the organization’s needs.


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