Maximizing the Effectiveness of Your Applicant Screening Process

Third and final part of a three-part series on the topic of Validating Minimum Qualifications.

The two previous articles focused on developing accurate minimum qualifications that were supported by the content validity model. Today, we will introduce the concept of externally imposed minimum qualifications and then touch on the other components of the application screening process that are necessary to ensure it has the desired impact on this critical component of the selection system and, ultimately, the success of the organization.

Quite often in human resources, the focus shifts from developing procedures that are valid and reliable to developing systems that can withstand legal challenges. The paradox is that if systems are valid and reliable they can withstand legal scrutiny and, more importantly, they become effective tools for selecting the best possible work force available.

While we often focus on internally imposed and established minimum qualifications, it is also important to remember that most public entities have a number of minimum qualifications that are imposed on them by entities outside of human resources. Typically, these outside sources come in the form of laws. For example: in order to become a peace officer in the state of Nevada, an individual has to be a citizen of the United States and at least 21 years of age. There is no way to get around these requirements, so it is important to include them in the minimum qualifications. Continue reading

Supporting Internally Developed Minimum Qualifications

Part two of a three-part series on the topic of Validating Minimum Qualifications.

The previous article focused on the content validity model as a tool for developing and supporting minimum qualifications. That discussion focused primarily on establishing minimal levels of education, training and experience. However; it is important to recognize that there are other requirements that go beyond education and experience requirements such licenses, certificates, age, and U. S. citizenship. Many of the additional requirements placed on job classes are established by law and therefore are externally imposed, which distinguishes them from qualifications that are internally developed and imposed

This article will focus on support for internally developed and imposed minimum qualifications. The next article in the series will put together all the components of the application screening process to maximize its effectiveness which goes hand in hand with its reliability and validity. Continue reading

Utilize a Content Validity Strategy to Establish Minimum Qualifications

Part one of a three-part series on the topic of Validating Minimum Qualifications.

Screening applications is the single most common human resources activity performed by all entities, public and private, that are involved in selecting employees. This process is typically not considered a test in the common use of the word, but it is. Since it is part of the selection process, it is required by the Uniform Guidelines for Employee Selection Procedures (UGESP 1978) to be both valid and reliable.

Just as the job analysis serves as the foundation for most of the activities related to test development and classification and compensation, the systematic analysis of the job should also be used to write the actual class specification which would include the minimum qualifications. Class specifications should be the standard for documenting the tasks to be performed on the job along with the knowledge, skills and abilities necessary to perform those tasks. In addition, class specifications should include a summary statement of how the minimum knowledge, skills, and abilities may be obtained. In that regard, since the class specification flows from the job analysis, the document should be a condensed version of the information obtained in the job analysis. Similar to the job analysis, the class specification should reflect a flow from the work performed (tasks) to the knowledge, skills, abilities, and personal characteristics (KSAP’s) necessary to perform the job at entry and the education and experience necessary to obtain those entry-level KSAP’s. How the KSAP’s may be obtained, stated in terms of education, training, and experience, becomes the minimum qualifications requirement. Continue reading