The recruiting, interviewing and selecting of industrial workers in the Houston area



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Purpose: The primary purpose for this study was to present in one report the steps used by personnel departments in recruiting, interviewing and selecting industrial workers in the Houston area. A secondary purpose of the study was to gather primary data on personnel departments and practices in the Houston area so that business graduate of colleges and universities in the Houston area would have a practical knowledge of actual personnel practices in their working area. Methods: The methods used to obtain data for this study were: (1) questionnaire mailed to 100 refineries, businesses, and industrial plants in the Houston area; and (2) the reading of recent books and magazines on personnel management and administration. Findings: The following are considered by the writer to be the main findings of this study: 1. The most commonly used methods of procuring employees were: employee recommendation, and unsolicited personal applications. Private and government employment agencies ranked third and fourth respectively. 2. Three of the most important causes of vacancies were: (1) accepted a new job, (2) promotion or transfer, (3) expansion of business. 3. Personnel departments spent more time with labor relations than with any other single activity. 4. All responding firms used the application blank in conjunction with the interview. Ninety per cent replied that they check on references. 5. The majority of firms used a line supervisor interview as well as an interview by the personnel department. 6. The main types of interviews used were the directed and non-directed interviews. 7. The single most important attribute of the interviewer was indicated by the respondents to be the ability to evaluate the actual qualifications of an applicant. 8. The pitfalls of an interviewer were evenly divided between: bias, stereotype procedure, and rating discrepancies. 9. Most interviewers were line supervisors with five years’ experience or more. 10. The majority of firms responded that jobs were evaluated by the classification system. 11. Most firms used supervisors and observation methods to evaluate company jobs. 12. The minimum age for applicants for 38 responding firms was 18. 13. The majority of companies did not have a maximum age for applicants. 14. The two most important aspects of employee selection are the interviewer evaluation and past attendance records of applicants. 15. Company interview personnel characteristics that were most important for plant or factory workers were: good physical condition, personality, dependability, and honesty. 16. Tests used by responding companies were mainly intelligence tests. These were evenly divided between Otis and Wonderlic Intelligence Tests.



Personnel management--Research, recruiting Industrial workers, Houston, personnel practices