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Understanding Interview

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Understanding the Personal Interview:
A Study for Managers Involved in the Hiring Process

Updated by: LAURA SIMS

The Personal Interview
Introduction
It is ironic the large emphasis that is placed on the “personal interview” when arriving at selection decisions within organizations, despite its low reliability and low accuracy in predicting future job performance. These interviews are usually relatively unstructured. Recent literature reviews suggest that the interviewer’s judgmental errors, along with numerous errors and biases associated with the processing of applicant information, contribute to the low validity of personal interviews. Since the workforce is the primary asset in most organizations, one might assume that the most effective selection strategy would be chosen to maximize productivity.

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Personal interviewing continues to be the most widely used method for selecting employees and is often used in conjunction with other techniques such as reference checking, weighted application blanks, skill tests, and psychological testing. There are obviously good reasons for the popularity of the employment interview despite the controversy regarding its validity.

This paper analyzes the validity of the interview-the measure of the degree to which the test predicts job success. Good selection doesn’t depend only on quality information, but on the quality of the interpretation. In the interview, the interviewer looks at the background of the applicant, analyzes the applicant’s responses during the interview and makes judgments about the behavior of the applicant. The following factors affect validity: * Pre-interview Impressions * Psychological Selective Perceptions * Stereotypes * Halo effect * Trait Configurations
Thus, often the validity of the interview rests on the interviewer.…...

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