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Hiring: 'doing it right'; How to select your employees--effectively and legally.



Effective pre-employment screening can have a major impact on the "bottom line." For example, by adding tests to their screening systems:

* A health-care organization reduced first-year turnover by over 40 percent.

* A theme park reduced outside medical costs associated with injuries by 43 percent.

* A distribution company found that top-scoring employees were seven times more likely to have outstanding attendance than low scorers.

Here are some tips to make sure your selection methods are effective and avoid legal pitfalls.

Selecting effectively

Five key actions can make sure your selection tools identify the best candidates:

1. Define what counts: Define the requirements of the jobs to be filled. Don't stop at the label level (such as "organized"). Define what the labels mean in actionable Giving sufficient legal grounds for a lawsuit; giving rise to a Cause of Action.

An act, event, or occurrence is said to be actionable when there are legal grounds for basing a lawsuit on it.
 statements, such as: "Able to manage multiple projects simultaneously."

2. Focus your tools: Applications, interviews and tests (such as personality, ability, physical capacity) can all supply value. Use the "what counts" factors to decide which tools to use. For example, use tests to assess basic abilities and personality factors, but structured interviews to assess more complex characteristics such as leadership skills.

3. "Validate" each tool: Verify that each tool you use is "valid" (useful and job-related). To validate applications and interviews, make sure they are grounded in your "what counts" factors. For most tests you will want statistical evidence of validity. You can validate a test by administering it to at least 100 incumbents and correlating test scores with job performance. You can also rely on previously conducted statistical studies if they were conducted on jobs that are very similar to yours.

4. Train: Carefully train everyone involved in the selection process, especially your interviewers. The predictive power The predictive power of a scientific theory refers to its ability to generate testable predictions. Theories with strong predictive power are highly valued, because the predictions can often encourage the falsification of the theory.  of selection tools drops very rapidly when screeners "do their own thing."

5. Be consistent: Each candidate should go through your prescribed pre·scribe  
v. pre·scribed, pre·scrib·ing, pre·scribes

v.tr.
1. To set down as a rule or guide; enjoin. See Synonyms at dictate.

2. To order the use of (a medicine or other treatment).
 selection process in exactly the same way. That allows you to make "like-to-like" comparisons. Also, avoid making exceptions to your hiring standards. This usually leads to watered-down standards and poor hiring decisions.

Selecting legally

Applicant screening systems may be legally challenged as being discriminatory dis·crim·i·na·to·ry  
adj.
1. Marked by or showing prejudice; biased.

2. Making distinctions.



dis·crim
 or constituting invasions of privacy. By following a few guidelines guidelines,
n.pl a set of standards, criteria, or specifications to be used or followed in the performance of certain tasks.
, employers can protect themselves from legal exposure:

1. Do not seek discriminatory information. Hiring decisions based, even in part, on an applicant's race, age, sex, religion, height, weight, marital status marital status,
n the legal standing of a person in regard to his or her marriage state.
, national origin, physical or mental handicap mental handicap
Noun

any intellectual disability resulting from injury to or abnormal development of the brain

mentally handicapped adj
 or genetic information unrelated to the ability to perform the job and (in some geographical areas) sexual orientation--are discriminatory. Screening systems should never directly seek this information nor should employers directly inquire in·quire   also en·quire
v. in·quired, in·quir·ing, in·quires

v.intr.
1. To seek information by asking a question: inquired about prices.

2.
 or make notations about these topics.

2. Seek consent prior to all testing or screening. Applicant consent can constitute an absolute defense to any privacy-related claim. Prior written applicant consent to all testing or screening systems should be obtained.

3. Timing. At a minimum, all physical testing should be implemented post-offer, pre-hire.

4. Avoid exposure to "disparate impact A theory of liability that prohibits an employer from using a facially neutral employment practice that has an unjustified adverse impact on members of a protected class. A facially neutral employment practice is one that does not appear to be discriminatory on its face; rather it is " claims. Some screening systems inadvertently exclude a group of applicants all sharing a common legally protected status. For example, requiring applicants to be high school graduates could exclude a greater percentage of minorities. This type of statistical result is referred to as having a "disparate impact" and can constitute illegal discrimination. Employers should regularly monitor the results of screening systems to determine if inadvertent disparate impact is occurring.

5. Tailor your selection tools. Selection tools should be specifically tailored for individual employers and specific individual jobs. Employers should also regularly "self-audit" the results of applicant screening systems to determine whether systemic systemic /sys·tem·ic/ (sis-tem´ik) pertaining to or affecting the body as a whole.

sys·tem·ic
adj.
1. Of or relating to a system.

2.
 discrimination may be occurring.

The old saying, "Hire in haste Adv. 1. in haste - in a hurried or hasty manner; "the way they buried him so hurriedly was disgraceful"; "hastily, he scanned the headlines"; "sold in haste and at a sacrifice"
hastily, hurriedly
, repent re·pent 1  
v. re·pent·ed, re·pent·ing, re·pents

v.intr.
1. To feel remorse, contrition, or self-reproach for what one has done or failed to do; be contrite.

2.
 at leisure" has stood the test of time. "Doing it right" may take a bit more time and effort, but the payoffs--in terms of the talent and performance of your team, and reduced legal exposure--are significant.

John Arnold is president of Grosse Pointe Grosse Pointe (grōs point), name referring to five residential suburbs of Detroit, Wayne co., SE Mich. They include the city of Grosse Pointe (1990 pop. 5,681), inc. 1879; Grosse Pointe Farms, city (1990 pop. 10,092), inc. 1893, on Lake St.  Park-based Polaris Assessment Systems Inc., a Bronze-level member of the Detroit Regional Chamber. Barbara VanZanten is a partner at the Detroit law firm of Clark Hill PLC, a Silver-level member.

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These pages are brought to you by the Detroit Regional Chamber's Workforce Central ... the first source for meeting regional human resource and workforce needs. To learn more about this initiative, visit www.detroitchamber.com or call (866) MBR-LINE.

Check out ClickonCareers.com, a system designed to help you recruit workers for technical positions requiring training beyond high school but not necessarily a four-year degree. For more information, visit the Workforce Central home page on our Website at www.detroitchamber.com or contact Robert Troutman at (313) 596-0478 or rtroutma@detroitchamber.com.

You can also find the latest Manpower Employment Outlook Survey results in the Workforce Central section.

Mark your calendar for the Detroit Regional Chamber's 2005 Workforce Strategies Conference, April 21 at the University of Michigan-Dearborn The University of Michigan-Dearborn, located in Dearborn, Michigan, USA, is part of the University of Michigan system. It was established in 1959 after a gift of 196 acres (793,000 m²) from the Ford Motor Company. . See page 10 for details.
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Title Annotation:Workforce CENTRAL
Author:VanZanten, Barbara A.
Publication:Detroiter
Geographic Code:1USA
Date:Apr 1, 2005
Words:803
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