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Missing Out: Five Ways to Misuse Online Screening Tools - Part 2

By Evan Sinar, Ph.D.

By Evan Sinar, Ph.D. Misuse #2: Using the Least Accurate Tools to Eliminate the Most Candidates 

Online tools used for initial candidate screening frequently capture three types of information: years of experience, education, and accomplishments indicating skills, knowledge, and training. While this information can aid in prioritizing candidates at the earliest stages of a funnel-based selection process, their relatively low level of predictive accuracy simply does not justify their use as primary screening methods – that is, using these factors alone to exclude a majority of the candidate pool from further consideration.

When ranked against all major selection tools in their ability to predict job effectiveness, measures of training and experience and those of years of education fall near the bottom, and far below other methods such as cognitive tests, personality tests, and structured interviews. The maximum proportion of candidates to screen out with a single selection tool should roughly match the accuracy with which the tool can gauge job success. In the case of skill and experience requirements often used for automated candidate screening, their accuracy generally supports screening out a relatively small proportion of candidates, in most cases no more than 20-30%.  Be wary about using these factors to screen candidates at substantially higher rates. Rather, supplement and sequence them with other, more predictive, selection tools to strike the right balance between the need to rapidly prioritize a large candidate pool, and the cumulative accuracy for gauging job success of the tools used to reach this goal.

Evan Sinar, Ph.D., is chief scientist and the director of DDI's Center for Analytics and Behavioral Research.

This article was originally published by Recruiting Trends and is reprinted here with permission.

Posted: 12 Sep, 2012,
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