Tuesday, October 07, 2008

Googling applicants, RJPs, and engagement

The September 2008 Issues of Merit was just released by the U.S. Merit Systems Protection Board and has some articles worth a quick read:

- The drawbacks inherent in doing internet searches of potential applicants (e.g., finding inaccurate or misleading information, gathering information that could be potentially discriminatory)

- Realistic job previews (of which I'm a huge fan)--these can take the form of videos, classes (on-line or otherwise), or simply a better description of the job. MSPB gives the example that they provide applicants with a list of "This job might be for you if..." factors along side "This job might not be for you if..."

I've found "willingness" or "pre-screening" questionnaires to be helpful as well, which simply have candidates answer a series of questions related to the screening process (e.g, "Are you willing to have your credit reports checked?") or the job itself (e.g., "Are you willing to come in contact with toxic chemicals on a daily basis?")

- Performance management and employee engagement. MSPB studies have shown that the PM process itself is more important than the formal structure--so what you say to your employees is more critical to engaging them than whether they receive a report each year. Makes intuitive sense, but many organizations assume that because everyone receives an annual appraisal, their performance management system must be working!

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