Personnel selection


Manchester School of Management, UMIST, PO Box 88, Manchester M60 1QD, UK (e-mail:


The main elements in the design and validation of personnel selection procedures have been in place for many years. The role of job analysis, contemporary models of work performance and criteria are reviewed critically. After identifying some important issues and reviewing research work on attracting applicants, including applicant perceptions of personnel selection processes, the research on major personnel selection methods is reviewed. Recent work on cognitive ability has confirmed the good criterion-related validity, but problems of adverse impact remain. Work on personality is progressing beyond studies designed simply to explore the criterion-related validity of personality. Interview and assessment centre research is reviewed, and recent studies indicating the key constructs measured by both are discussed. In both cases, one of the key constructs measured seems to be generally cognitive ability. Biodata validity and the processes used to develop biodata instruments are also critically reviewed. The article concludes with a critical evaluation of the processes for obtaining validity evidence (primarily from meta-analyses) and the limitations of the current state of the art. Speculative future prospects are briefly reviewed.