Personnel Selection Procedures and Invasion of Privacy


  • Abbreviated versions of the results of Study 1 and Study 2, respectively, were presented at the 1989 meeting of the Society for Industrial and Organizational Psychology, Boston, MA (Stone, Stone, & Hyatt, 1989), and the 1994 meeting of the Society for Industrial and Organizational Psychology, Nashville, TN (Stone & Stone, 1994). In the case of Study 2, the authors gratefully acknowledge the financial support that was provided by a grant from the Industrial and Organizational Psychology Academic Challenge Enhancement Program, Department of Psychology, Bowling Green State University.

*Correspondence concerning this article should be addressed to Eugene F. Stone-Romero, Department of Psychology, University of Central Florida, Orlando, FL 32816-1390 [e-mail:].


We conducted two studies on the perceived invasiveness of 12 personnel selection procedures. In Study 1, indirect scaling methods were used to examine the degree to which 84 employed adults in the United States perceived such procedures to be invasive of privacy. Results showed the application blank was the least invasive of privacy and the lie detector was the most invasive of privacy. In Study 2, data from 149 (mostly employed) adults in the Northeast were used to assess relationships between invasiveness and several hypothesized antecedents. Correlation analyses showed that invasiveness was predicted by several factors (e.g., the extent to which the procedures erroneously discredited job applicants). Implications for personnel selection practices in work organizations are considered.