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Abstract

Research on the effectiveness in improving salesforce performance through personnel selection procedures and training interventions was examined by meta-analytic techniques applied with 157 predictor-criterion effect sizes involving selection procedures and 12 effect sizes involving training interventions. Significant effect sizes, on average, were obtained for (a) composite-domain assessment against both subjective (ratings) and objective (sales performance) criteria, (b) single-domain assessment against both criterion types, and (c) training interventions with respect to both criterion types combined. Significant variability was found among individual effect sizes within all categories of aggregation. Of the six specific categories of single-domain assessment considered, five yielded significant validity for each of the two criterion types. Follow-up utility analyses revealed improvements in sales productivity of from 14.8% to 34.1% for selection procedures and of 23.1% for training. Associated dollar-based utility estimates indicated particularly substantial dollar gains for organizations employing composite-domain selection with rigorous selection ratios, and lesser, but still substantial, gains from single-domain selection with rigorous selection ratios, and from training interventions. © 2001 John Wiley & Sons, Inc.