The various roles within the HR Department

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Recruitment and selection do not need to be part or HR's responsibility; these can be devolved to line management or even outsourced completely. Discuss


Recruitment is the process of attracting the pool of potential candidates for a vacancy in an organization. From this pool the organization selects the candidate who matches the organization's required qualifications and all respective requisites. Recruitment is a base for the performance and level of efficiency of an organization in the long run. Tasks of human resource planning and the requirements of the specific job position if designed properly and efficiently can give good and easy results of the recruitment process. Most of the medium and large organizations have separate department for the recruitment purposes settled as part of the Human Resource department in order to perform this duty in the remarkable way, avoiding any risk in selecting the most valuable resource of an organization (Byars and Rue, 2007)

Selection is the process of picking the right person from the pool of potential candidates that have been recruited for a certain job position. The recruitment process provides the company with the suitable group of people but selection is the process of testing all of them against different standards and requisites to get the best match for the advertised job. This process is long and detailed and needs collective work from all the concerned departments, especially that of human resource department. Many of the tasks are performed by HR department like the preliminary interviews, detailed interviews and many more. Human Resource department remains with the employee from very first day of resume collection to the end that is till retirement or after that even.

Recruitment Process

The process of recruitment in any organization starts once any employee resigns is terminated or a new position for any department is created. As the hiring or concerned manger gets any such notification to fill the vacant seat, he should contact the HR department of the company to create and update the job descriptions of the vacant seat and initiate the job requisition on the employment applicant tracking system and develop a recruitment plan. The first steps required in initializing the recruitment process is to Create, update or modify the job description for the vacant position

A job description should include the following:

Position Summary: This should explain the position overview of the job that well identifies the purpose and objectives of the job

Essential Functions: This should explain about the required task, duties and responsibilities of the job

Minimum Qualifications: What Minimum Knowledge, skills, and abilities are needed by the applicant/candidate to enter the job?

Success Factors: Personal characteristics that contribute to a person's ability to perform the job should also be mentioned.

Working Conditions: An important factor of Environment in which the job is performed should also be mentioned.

Role of HR Department in Recruitment:

The initial and traditional role of HR had been the advertising and conducting and administration of the recruitment and the selection process that is assisting the other departments only. With the passage of time the role of HR department in the companies changed and started becoming the key player in the functions of the organizations. The companies, therefore, had to change the HR strategy world wide, accepting HR as the key player in recruitment and selection of the employees and handling all their related issues. (

The HR Role in Recruitment changed and it now decides:

The design of recruitment and segregates the roles of the Human resource and the hiring manager

The right profile of the candidate as required

The sources to gather the potential pool of the candidates

Designs the methods to measure the accuracy and effects of the recruitment and the selection processes (

There has been no single best method for recruitment yet. Every organization has to tailor the process that suits its environment and the requirements. This is an on going process in which a separate team is needed to monitor post recruitment and selection results of an organization's work force. It is done in different dimensions out of which the most critical are job performance, absenteeism, and turnover and employee satisfaction. The team that performs these tasks is the part of HR domain of the organization.

In the past the jobs and the companies had been shown just attractive to the candidates, overlooking the facts and the realities in the posts offered. This created a lot of post selection problems when the selected personnel were exposed to the real face of the job and that of the organization.

The employment office has a group of small teams who perform recruitment, interviewing and the clerical functions for the organization (Byars and Rue, 2007)

The markets are getting competitive in the present times; the role of HR is not conducting and assisting the recruitment processes merely but making them more attractive and competitive for both candidates and the organization (

Competitive and effective recruitment now a day is a big challenge for the organizations. The potential candidates not only require the attractive starting salaries but much more like; growth opportunities, different fringe benefits and others of these types.

Role of HR Department in Selection:

Selection of the employees for an organization is a long process, involving many of the departments. The departments test the candidate from different dimensions before presenting the final job contract or the offer.

Entering the detail of this process we get the following steps;

The selection starts from the preliminary interview of the candidates in order to check the details provided in the resume by the candidate. This is not a detailed interview and can be easily conducted by the HR personnel.

Some companies may conduct the written test of the candidates before the detailed interview. The HR people get the test paper designed from the concerned authorities and arrange the test.

After the test the qualifiers have to appear in a detailed interview. This interview is mostly conducted by a panel of interviewers, testing the candidate from different angles. The panel may include minimum of two and up to fifteen members conducting the interview including one person from HR department.

The candidates who qualify the interview are then listed for then medical check up and physical examination.

The medical tests are followed by the final merit selection and listing.

The selected candidates have to sign a contract with the organization.

Finally the candidates are offered the job after the contract has been designed.

In above process all the concerned departments have to be well coordinated with one another in order to make the process smooth. There is need of a party that can interlink the services of these departments facilitating the candidates in the whole process. This third party can be none else than the Human Resource Department of an organization.

According to the survey report of Sheila M. Rioux, Ph.D., and Paul Bernthal, Ph.D. Recruitment and Selection Practices

The following figure distinguishes the companies offering the highly attractive recruitment offers from those offering moderate or low offerings

The figure shows that salary is not only the attraction for most of the potential candidates. HR acknowledges that there are other things that attract the candidates to sty loyal in the long term with the organization. So the organization must provide an environment and the culture that best fits the incoming employee to flourish and succeed

Line management and recruitment and selection process:

Line managers are the front line management force of an organization. These are the people who are responsible for the implementation of any strategies or the policies of the top management. Line managers directly contact with the employees (Cantrell & Miele, 2007).

Line managers are the people who directly work with the labor and the work team of an organization and are therefore responsible for their work and the outputs. They also know about the problems and the reasons behind the issues like absenteeism, turnover or the job performance. The HR people are therefore required to contact the line managers in order to get the right information about what is required.

The first secret of effectiveness, according to Peter Drucker, is to understand the people one works with in order to get maximum use of their abilities, strengths and the skills (Cantrell & Miele, 2007:2)

Human Resource performs the selection process mainly and handles every aspect of the process. The main collaboration of HR department is with the line managers as they are very close to the workforce.

Out sourcing the Recruitment and selection process:

Outsourcing means giving some of the tasks of an organization to the third party to perform in exchange that party is paid for the task performed. Outsourcing is the fast growing trend in these days and is getting pace along with other changes in the organizations world wide.

The parties hired as the third party perform different tasks for the companies and give the results according to the pre settled standards. The parent company that is the one that hires the third party provides the hired party with standards and the requirements for performing the specific tasks; for example: recruitment or selection.

The companies hire the people who best fit the organizations. The advantages of this fast growing trend can be viewed as under:

Outsourcing cuts down the cost of fixed and permanent recruitment department I the parent organization

It saves the resources being utilized in managing the recruitment department

The team engaged in recruitment or selection in the parent company can be switched to more useful and valuable tasks like designing the strategies to retain the hired employees and other such issues.

The companies don't need to train the team separately for the recruitment purposes

The main advantage is the cost saving when the companies do not need to maintain the soft wares and the infra structures for the recruitment and the selection processes as the soft wares and programs become obsolete very soon in the present world


Mostly the companies are using the outsourcing for recruitment of higher level management even. The head hunters are specialized in recruitment and are some times given the tasks of performing the last stage processes of the employees sometimes may be like screening and medical examinations. The core operation of the selection process is done by the organizations themselves.


As discussed above the recruitment and selection processes have to be monitored in a continuous way. The need of HR department is there to handle these activities in order to connect all the concerned departments in the process connected and to facilitate the departments and the candidates from recruitment to retirement and even after that.

These activities can be outsourced to an extent in order to save money and utilize the HR potential some where else in the useful activities to make the organization work smooth and progressively.