Differentiate clearly the differences between the recruitment and selection phases.





Assignment Title: Recruitment and Selection Case Study

Purpose of this assignment

Any text on Human resource management (HRM) would likely cover the topics of Recruitment and Selection very early in the semester.  In fact, recruitment and selection signify the beginning of the career pathway for any employee. 


This assignment will cover recruitment and selection which are part of the overall hiring process. Once an organization had finished its strategic plan, the short term plan needs to be aligned.   This will affect all the departments in an organization.  The organization needs to decide on the number as well as the types of personnel it needs for the long-term and also annually.  It means “workforce planning” or “manpower planning” is carried out next.   Once these aspects are finalized, the recruitment can start which can come from within the organization or outside of the organisation.


Successful students will be able to:

-      Differentiate clearly the differences between the recruitment and selection phases.

-      Identify the practices that goes with the recruitment and selection methods

-      Outline the strengths and weaknesses of these two central topics


Students are required to complete a GROUP assignment based on the instructions and guidelines given in the assignment brief.



HRM is a topic vital to all organisations, both in a commercial enterprise or a non-profit organisation.   People or employees are needed for managers to ensure its organisational objectives are met.  This group assignment concerns a multinational manufacturing company called Setron Medical Industries.  Setron is a medical devices company located in the free trade zone. The company had just firmed up its strategic plan and manpower needs, and follows that with decisions on the requirements to the labour force.   The case study which followed is based on a fictitious company where demand for it products is seasonal.  Therefore its labour requirements will also fluctuates.  It is in such times that the scenario unfolds which centres on recruitment and selection.



Task 1 – Answer all the questions that follows the Case Study (30% of the Course)

Read through the Case Study and answer all the five questions which follow immediately after the case.


Details of the Case Study

Setron had completed its annual manpower requirements and found that it needed a senior purchasing manager quite immediately.   This was due to a sudden increase in purchasing orders from the American market.  This senior purchasing manager would report to the Head of Purchasing, Mr. Calvin.  Mr. Calvin had directed the Human Resource (HR) Head Mr. Samuel to look at some internal candidates for the position.  As there had been no senior purchasing manager before, the HR Head decided to use the same job description of the incumbent purchasing manager to look at the job and person requirements.  Setron must find a senior purchasing manager who must be a man of integrity as well as one with the technical knowledge to serve the medical industry.


Mr. Samuel directed his officer to publicise the vacancy internally immediately.  After several months of internal advertisements, there were a few applicants.  Mr. Calvin and Mr. Samuel interviewed them but found none were the right skills and knowledge.  They were found to be too junior to take on the job of the senior purchasing manager.  The search has by then became very serious as the busy production season was about to begin soon.


The position of senior purchasing manager needed to be filled up urgently.  As purchasing volume increased, the HR staff were busily recruiting lower levels purchasing operators as well.  Thus Mr. Samuel decided outside help was needed.   He decided to use the services of an external recruitment company called Prime Talent (PT) which charged a reasonable fee to provide resumes for their clients.   As PT has been supplying lower level employees to Setron, there were some level of trust between PT and Setron.  Furthermore, Mr. Samuel and the boss of PT Ms. Lian were classmates before.  Therefore, Mr. Samuel and Ms. Lian had some discussions via the telephone including enhancing job requirements on the senior purchasing manager needed. 


Very soon, Mr. Samuel was able to get PT to provide the resumes very quickly to Setron.  PT is quite familiar with the medical industries for the lower level employees.  However, searching for a high level senior manager is a different thing. Since Setron was faced with very tight time constraint, Mr. Samuel chose to depend on his friend to fill up the vacancy.  PT immediately commenced with some online advertisements and also actively searched through its resume bank.  PT went through these resumes and selected those they thought were most suitable to forward to Setron.  Samuel’s officer will then pulled out the job description of the purchasing manager and match it against the resumes of the candidates.  The comparison produced a few prospective candidates with Mr. Clark appearing to be the most promising one. 


An interview was scheduled where Mr. Calvin and PT’s senior consultant Ms. Lian were also present.  It was more like a “casual” interview as Mr. Calvin assumed Mr. Samuel had carefully screened through while Ms. Lian assumed that her people have done all the reference and background checks. Since Mr. Clark has already attained a senior level, it was thought there was no need to “grill” him in an interview.  Is this approach the right one? Mr. Clark was very impressive and showed great speaking abilities.  As time was critical, he was not asked to undergo the psychometric assessment taken by senior executives.  In fact, he outshone all the other candidates in the “casual” interview.  Very soon, the candidate Mr. Clark was employed by Setron with the title of “Senior Purchasing Manager”.


Then, Mr. Clark began to show his actual character.  At first he was observing things around him and did not react very much.  Then symptoms of his fiery nature in managing people started appearing.  It even deteriorated to a point where he engaged in “shouting matches” with his people.  He started upsetting not only his people but also people from purchasing department as well as the marketing department for different reasons.  Things worsened so much that after four months with SETRON, Mr. Clark’s employment with SETRON was terminated.  After that, Mr. Clark took legal action and the case is pending.


Upon Mr. Clark’s departure, there were some internal enquiry by Setron.  A background search showed Mr. Clark did not resign but was dismissed from his last job.  Additional search revealed he left the company due to his quick temper.  At the same time, with the mounting pressure of time, Mr. Clark did not undergo the usual background checks and psychometric assessment.  It was also observed that the job description used for Mr. Clark did not fully covered Mr. Clark’s job.  By then, it was too little and too late.  The damage was done.


Looking back, were there things which could have being done differently?  Should the recruitment agency carry out the background checks?  Could the Human Resource Head make better decisions in getting the services of a recruitment agency for higher positions?  Can PT be more effective even though it was engaged as a lower-level recruitment agency?  Should there be a better selection process?



Questions on the Case Study

1 Identify which party/parties are involved in recruitment and which are involved in selection.  Provide the basis for your answer?

(20 marks


2.Generally, how would a psychometric tool help in the selection of the important candidates (5 marks)?   Based on research, specifically identify a psychometric tool and how it can be used in this case study (15 marks).

(20 marks)


3. If Setron considered using application forms, what would be three advantages of using application forms instead of resumes for hiring (12 marks)?  Provide two instances when using resumes can add value (in two ways) to the selection process (8 marks)?

(20 marks)


4. Explain in five ways how cross references, background checks and references can be used more effectively for recruitment?  The explanation of these ways must relate to the case study.

 (5x4 marks=20 marks)


[100 marks]

Guidelines of the Assignment

Here are some of the guidelines:

1. Each Group is expected to complete the assignment independently.

2. This assignment would comprise 30% of overall marks for the HRM subject.

3. The report should contain APA references.

    (See Outlines for further details)

4. The work must be original with no plagiarism with a Turnitin score not exceeding 20%.

5. The finalised copy used for marking would be the copy submitted through the Turnitin.


Sources of information:

The chosen HRM theory should be based on the standard HRM textbook of Human Resource Management (10th Edition) by Derek Torrington, Laura Hall, Carol Atkinson and Stephen Taylor.  Supplementing this text would be Human Resource Management, (15th Edition) by Gary Dessler as well as additional readings provided by the lecturer-in-charge.


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