Organisational behaviour is an approach that helps in understanding the human behaviour and how they interact with their environment. organisational behaviour is a psychological concept that is applied to business organisations that assists human resource managers in managing the workforce, understanding their needs, developing them, identifying the factors that will motivate them and using appropriate behaviour interventions to correct behaviour wherever required. Organisational behaviour is also studies to understand the way in which people interact within groups in order to maximise the outputs from individual group members (Wood, et al., 2016).
Recruitment and selection is one of the most important core functions of a human resource management that aims at recognizing the human resource demand of a business and finding out ways to fulfil it (Shackleton, 2015). Recruitment and selection aims at hiring the right individuals for filing up the vacant job positions so that a business organisation can perform its functions uninterrupted and can outperform its competitors.
Personality, in simple words, can be defined as the difference in values, attitudes, memory, habits, skills, attitude, aptitude, etc. that exists between individuals and forms an important factor that governs their behaviour. Assessment of personality plays a vital role in understanding organisational behaviour of employees. (Mischel, 2013).
The present day business world is complex and highly competitive. The competition has reached a global scale and the companies are fighting a war to achieve market competencies. In such a scenario, human resources are being considered as the best resources for a business to become competitive because all other processes and resources are replicable. Therefore, business organisations are investing millions of dollars in the management of their human resources so that they can become competitive and can stay in the market competition for a longer period of time.
To achieve higher competencies and to ensure better organisational results, business organisations have identified the importance of recruiting the right people for the right job at the right time. To achieve this, human resource management of business organisations are coming up with unique and innovative ways to assess the capabilities and the qualities of a candidate before they are recruited for filling up a vacant job position. To recruit the best possible candidates, personality has been recognised as one of the topmost factor that can help in assessing the candidates in the best possible manner (Barrick1, et al., 2013).
The personality-job fit theory is one of the most talked about theory that proposes the importance of benefits in finding the right organisational fit. According to this theory, the personality of a person can provide a detailed insight into the ability of a person to fit in an organisation. The degree to which a person can fit into an organisation is defined as their personality job fit (Virtual HR , n.d.). The importance of assessing the personality of candidates in recruitment and selection programs and in finding the right job fit is discussed below:
First of all, if a vacant job position in a business organisation requires specific characteristics, skills or personality types, then personality testing can prove to be beneficial. For example, if an organisation requires a candidate to work in closely knit groups and teams, it can conduct a personality assessment for all candidates and can use it to assess the extent to which they will be comfortable in working as a part of a team. Further, personality assessment tests can also be configured to identify some special job related skills or attributes amongst people. For example, human resource managers can assess multiple personality traits when they have to hire people for jobs that are monotonous. Assessing the right personality traits for such jobs can help human resource managers in recruiting those people who have the ability to perform same tasks over and over again and still be satisfied with their jobs (Jaworski, n.d.).
Secondly, personality assessment can help human resource managers in recruiting the people who have positive personality traits and are less influenced by negative emotions. No organisation would want to recruit people who have a higher tendency to be influenced by negative emotions. Such candidates can find it harder to be satisfied with their work or the work conditions that their employers offer to them. People who are influenced by negative emotions can foster negativity amongst other employees too and can ultimately contribute to the increase in employee turnover rates (Anon., 2001).
Thirdly, assessing the personality of candidates can also allow business organisations in recruiting better sales people and customer care executives. Customers always want people friendly personalities to deal with and such qualities in employees can derive sales. Customers tend to step back from business dealings when they feel that an employee is rude or is not attentive.
Fourthly, assessing the personality traits of an individual can reveal his or her natural inclination and strengths towards certain subjects. For example, using personality assessment, one can test an individual for qualities like emotional intelligence, openness, extraversion, artistic, etc., which can help in placing an individual at the right job position.
Lastly, assessing the personality of candidates can allow business organisations in predicting their behaviour in the future and the attitude that they will show towards their jobs. Personality assessment can help in gaining knowledge about an individual’s dedication towards work, ability to stick to an organisation, motivation levels, engagement levels, etc. and can help in taking recruitment decisions (Boundless, n.d.).
Therefore, it is clearly evident that personality assessment plays a huge role in the recruitment process as it helps business organisations in finding the right fit and predicting the behaviour of the candidates that they are most likely to demonstrate if they are selected for a particular job position.
The importance that personality assessment has in the recruitment process and in finding the right organisational fit can be seen from the fact that there are almost 2,500 different questionnaires available from different sources that can help business organisations in assessing the different personality traits of candidates. There have also been certain personality theories that have been helpful in understanding the importance of assessing personality traits of candidates while taking recruitment decisions. One of the most widely used personality assessment theory is discussed in detail below:
The big five personality traits à whenever the word personality assessment is mentioned, the first thing that comes to the mind of a person from the field of human resource management is the big five personality traits. The big five personality traits define 5 personality traits that can help in getting a better assessment of the candidates in order to find the perfect organisational fit. The five traits in the theory are:
- Openness àit defines the ability of a person to be open to new experiences and having interest in a wider variety of things. People who are assessed to be high on this personality trait have an open mind and like to indulge into things that can offer them new experiences. Such people are intellectual, curious, open to emotions and are always willing to try new things.
- Conscientiousness àit defines the ability of a person to be trustworthy and reliable. People with high conscientiousness are well organised and tend to plan things before doing anything. Such people display qualities of self-discipline and are very strict towards their duties.
- Extraversion àit defines the ability of a person to be part of social groups and socialise with others. People who are high on extraversion are known as extroverts while people who score low on extraversion are known as introverts and are usually those people who do not prefer socialising. In general, most of the organisations are on a look for people who are high on extraversion as they have a higher capability of forming groups and developing synergies for achieving organisational success.
- Agreeableness àthis trait defines the ability of a person to be friendly, cooperative and compassionate. People who are measured high on this personality trait have a greater ability to get along well with others. Such people are kind, generous, trusting and trustworthy. Agreeable people also have a positive attitude towards life and human nature.
- Neuroticism àthis dimension is aimed at assessing the ability of a person to get persuaded by negative emotions and feelings (123test.com, n.d.). People who are measured high on neuroticism are generally rejected by business organisations as they can easily get angry, anxious, depressed and influenced by negative emptions, which can ultimately lead to job dissatisfaction. Furthermore, people measured high on neuroticism can also spread their negativity in the workplace by influencing other employees.
The big five personality theory provides an excellent framework to the recruiters who can use this model to assess some important personality traits in the candidates. For example, a person who is assessed high on neuroticism will be difficult to motivate and will always demonstrate a negative behaviour. Such people can also spread negativity in the workplace by influencing others. Similarly, by assessing the openness level of an individual, organisations that are working in complex and highly change oriented environments can make a better recruitment decision.
The importance of personality in matching the right people to the right job is a highly debatable topic. Some people believe that personality assessment of a person is a factor of their mood and some candidates can provide varied answers to the assessment questions to leave a better impression on the recruiters. On the other hand, some people believe that personality assessment is the only way that can help human resource managers in predicting the skills and behaviour of a person while working at a particular job post in a particular organisation. On the overall, personality assessment does play an important role in matching the right candidate to the right jobs because it can reveal a lot of information about a candidate that can help the recruiters in taking the right decision.
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