Using 360 degree feedback in the recruitment process?
I recently came across the following article on a current trend in Talent Management on Dion Chang’s Flux Trends website (www.fluxtrends.co.za):Retrenchment and Talent Management: The time of the chameleon.
It makes an interesting point about behavioural attributes becoming significantly more important than skills when recruiting. In our experience individuals in an organisation are assessed on an annual or 6-monthly basis, as part of the performance management or appraisal cycle. A new recruit will therefore generally be in their position for some time before the results of a 360 assessment become available and possibly highlight obvious areas of weakness, shortcomings or incompatibility with the organisational culture. Information which had it been available at the time of interviewing suitable candidates would have indicated the individual’s unsuitability for the position or organisation. However, the problem now is that this individual has already been appointed…
Would it therefore not make sense to incorporate a 360 assessment of shortlisted candidates, particularly when these candidates have not previously worked for the organisation? Yes, I am aware that shortlisted candidates will normally be expected to complete a battery of psychometric tests but how many of these, if any, allow individuals other than the recruit to provide feedback regarding the individual’s day-to-day behaviour or the manner in which an individual conducts themselves at work? I mean, one of the inherent benefits of a 360 assessment is the ability to get a more complete and unbiased/balanced view of an individual. Wouldn’t it be great to get a prospective employee’s previous manager, colleagues and subordinates assessment of an individual summarised in an easy-to-understand report? In addition, deciding between recruits based on values or cultural fit is a much more objective process facilitated through the comparison of reports. With reference to the article above, CV’s are by and large a summary of an individual’s skills. And if they have included a character description, how accurate (read: honest) is this likely to be? Psychometric tests provide a more scientific method of measuring an individual’s behaviour attributes but again these are based on just one person’s data. Food for thought.
Do you agree with this reasoning; do you believe that 360 behavioural assessments should be conducted as part of the recruitment process? Perhaps they already are and I am just not aware of it or perhaps there are very valid reasons for not adopting such an approach? Please share your thoughts!
Tags: 360 Assessment, Recruitment Process