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PSY 6430 Unit 8. Schedule Tonight: Lecture, one lecture unit! Monday, April 15: Exam 8 Task analysis due if grade BF ME2 Wednesday, April 17: Return of E8 ME2 Study objectives Monday, April 22: ME2 at 5:00-7:00 pm

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Psy 6430 unit 8

PSY 6430 Unit 8


Tonight: Lecture, one lecture unit!

Monday, April 15: Exam 8

Task analysis due if grade BF ME2

Wednesday, April 17: Return of E8

ME2 Study objectives

Monday, April 22: ME2 at 5:00-7:00 pm

Task analysis due – can leave it in

my mailbox in Wood, if you prefer

Application Forms,

Reference Checks, & Interviews

Application forms biodata assessments
Application forms & Biodata assessments

  • As indicated in the SO1, while I understand that biodata assessments are valid, I have a hard time with them because:

    • Invasion of privacy: see questions in Tables 9.2 and 9.3 on pages 340 and 341

      • Particularly given the warning by the authors later in the text that invasion of privacy issues are likely to become more important in the future

    • Nature of the work force may (and does) change over time and what predicts successful performance for current workers may not at all predict successful performance for “new” generations of workers, particularly given increasing diversity of the workforce

(cont. next slide)

Application forms biodata assessments1
Application forms & Biodata assessments

  • And SO2, they don’t add any predictive value over general mental ability tests

  • Advice: Employers would do as well with a readily available mental ability test (save time and money re development) and avoiding biodata inventories

So3 falsification of information on resumes and application forms
SO3: Falsification of information on resumes and application forms

  • People do falsify information, for positions at all levels of an organization

  • A study by the Society of Human Resources Management reported that 53% of applications contain false information

  • The NY Times reported that 34% of applications contain outright lies about experience, education, and ability to perform the essential job functions

  • NFE, but 41% of college students said they included at least one false statement on an application, and 95% said they were willing to do that

  • Also NFE, but 40% of executives reported they had lied about their education

So3 nfe examples from a 2012 article
SO3, NFE: examples from a 2012 article forms

  • Marilee Jones, Dean of Admissions at MIT did not have any of the degrees she claimed from three universities

  • Kenneth Lonchar, CEO of Veritas Software lied about having an accounting degree

  • Shirley DeLibero, head of Houston Metropolitan Transit Authority, did not have two degrees listed on her resume

  • Michael Brown, head of the Federal Emergency Agency

    • Claimed he was assistant city manger when he was only assistant to the manager with no mgt. responsibilities

    • Claimed he was a professor when he was only a student at a particular university

    • Claimed to have been the national head of a trade group when he had only headed a regional chapter

    • Did not reveal previous employment from which he had been terminated

*Bible, J. D. (2012). Lies and damned lies: Some legal implications of resume fraud and advice for

Preventing it. Employee Relations Law Journal, 38(3), 22-47.

(and probably once of the most infamous..)

So3 nfe examples cont
SO3,NFE: Examples cont. forms

  • Any sports fans?

  • In 2001, Notre Dame hired George Leary as the new football coach

  • He was fired 5 days later for falsifying his credentials

  • He claimed he had an MA from NYU, which he did not

  • He claimed that he had coached a football team in New Hampshire, which he had not

  • And, finally he claimed he had played 3 years of football, which he had not

So3 nfe examples cont1
SO3,NFE: Examples, cont. forms

  • My experience at Port Authority when I was working in the Personnel Department, Management Division

  • We hired a woman as a human resources representative who claimed to have a very strong background as a personnel administrator

  • She was a disaster

  • About 6-8 months after she was hired, one of my colleagues took it upon himself to check out her references

  • Every single one of them was false

  • My colleague brought this to the attention of our manager, who at the time was an interim manager (who wanted to be the permanent manager)

  • He buried the whole thing and kept her on

So3 nfe one more example
SO3,NFE: One more example forms

  • WMU, Hamman, 2010

  • Hired in 2004, left in February, 2010, age 58

  • Co-directed WMU’s Center of Excellence for Simulation Research, College of Aviation, medical simulation work

  • He was a United Airlines pilot, hired directly by the Dean of the College of Aviation, who had also been a UA pilot and who bypassed WMU’s regular hiring process

  • The co-director, Bill Rutherford, was a physician and also had been a pilot and executive at UA

  • Hamman claimed to have a Ph.D. and a medical degree from University of Wisconsin-Madison

  • The Center brought in over $4.2 million dollars in grant funding

  • He left to join William Beaumont Hospital in Royal Oak

  • In June, Beaumont discovered he did not have either a Ph.D. or a medical degree!

(article at the end of the sos)

So3 falsification of information on the application form this slide also nfe
SO3: Falsification of information on the forms application form (this slide, also NFE)

  • The moral of the story:

    Even for high profile positions, some applicants falsify information, so check references!!

So4 wording to reduce falsification on applications
SO4: Wording to reduce falsification on applications forms

  • Every application form should have the following wording on it:

    Deliberate attempts to falsify information can be detected and may be grounds for either not hiring you or for terminating you after you begin work

  • And, the following to obtain certification by the applicant:

    By signing this application, I declare that the information provided by me is complete and true to the best of my knowledge. I understand that any misrepresentation or omission on this application may preclude an offer of employment, or may result in a withdrawal of an employment offer, or may result in my discharge from employment if I am already employed at the time the misrepresentation or omission is discovered.

  • It is much easier to fire a person because he/she lied on the application than it is to fire a person for false or incomplete information on the application!

  • SO4, FE: This type of wording has been shown to reduce falsification by almost 50%!

So5 application blanks the more the better danger
SO5: Application blanks forms The “more the better” danger

  • Some employers think it is desirable to obtain as much information as possible on the application in order to screen applicants better

  • However, the “more the better” danger can create major problems for an employer. Why?

    • They are covered by EEO and AA laws

    • Those laws assume that ALL questions on the application are used to make selection decisions

    • Under a charge of unfair discrimination, the burden of proof may be on the employer to demonstrate that ALL questions are fair, and not discriminatory

So6 nfe questions to ask about application form items table 9 5
SO6 (NFE): Questions to ask about application form items - Table 9.5

  • Will answers to this question, if used, have adverse impact on members of a protected group?

  • Is this information really needed to evaluate an applicant’s competence or qualifications for the job?

  • Does the question conflict with EEOC guidelines, federal or state laws, or statutes?

  • Does the question constitute an invasion of privacy?

  • Is information available that could be used to show that responses to a question are associated with success or failure on a specific job

(five questions to ask; did anyone bring in an application form from a company they work for?)

So7 questions most litigated
SO7: Questions most litigated Table 9.5

  • Reviews of 300 federal court cases re applications

  • Sex and age most frequent (53% of cases)

  • Of those, the plaintiff won over 40%

  • NFE, but ~ 20% of the cases involved questions relating to

    • Educational requirements

    • Convictions

    • Work history

    • Experience requirements

(can’t ask for dates of attendance to high school or college – age)

So8 fair employment practice laws
SO8: Fair Employment Practice Laws Table 9.5

  • The Fair Employment Practice Laws of states determine the legal status of pre-employment inquiries, and thus these are the laws that employers should review first when looking at their application forms

So9 state vs federal laws which are favored by eeoc and why
SO9: State vs. Federal laws, which are favored by EEOC and why?

  • EEOC favors state laws

  • Federal laws tend to be more conservative, that is they favor the organization more than the person bringing the complaint

    • Federal laws supersede state laws so state laws must be as “conservative” as federal laws

    • State laws can be more liberal (favor the individual more)

      • State laws can cover other demographic characteristics (Michigan laws cover people who are overweight and sexual orientation; California covers cross-dressers)

      • Example in book – federal laws permit questions re criminal convictions (not arrests, but convictions), but some states, OH, for example, applicants cannot be required to disclose convictions for minor misdemeanor violations

So10 questions you can and cannot ask
SO10: Questions you can and cannot ask why?

  • Turn to Table 9.6, page 354

  • Cannot ask anything about marital status, children or child care

  • Cannot ask anything that reveals the date of birth (when did you graduate from high school)

  • Undesirable to ask about military experience

  • Cannot ask about arrests, only convictions

So11 use of technology and screening resumes
SO11: Use of technology and screening resumes why?

Companies are increasingly:

  • Optically scanning resumes

  • Using keyword searches for to identify specific information that addresses minimum qualifications and credentials

Lesson: When applying for jobs look for the key words

in the add and include those on your resume

(SO is worded awkwardly – sorry)

So12 two legal issues re online screening
SO12: Two legal issues re online screening why?

  • Minority applicants may not have equal access to the internet and may be overlooked during the screening process, which could result in disparate impact

  • Privacy: third-party vendors or the web sites themselves may track sensitive data provided by applicants

    • Should include a statement re privacy – who will have access to their data?

Nfe facebook and social media
NFE: Facebook and social media why?

  • April 20, 2012 (survey of 2,000 hiring managers and human resource personnel

    • 37% of employers use social networking sites to pre-screen applicants (most use Facebook)

    • 11% said they planned to start

    • 34% said they had come across something that caused them not to hire the person

      • Provocative photo

      • References to drinking or drug use

      • Other red flags: speaking badly about a former employer, making discriminatory comments related to race, gender, religion, etc., lying about qualifications, not writing well

(study conducted by Harris Interactive; commissioned by the website Career Builder; privacy settings;

Some employers have even asked applicants to give them their username and password ; hand out article )

Nfe facebook and social media1
NFE: Facebook and social media why?

  • Legal status

    • In 2012, Delaware, Maryland, & Washington passed legislation prohibiting employers from requesting/requiring usernames and passwords

    • Michigan passed similar legislation on 12/28/12

    • Similar laws are pending in other states

      • CA, IL, MA, NY, OH, SC

    • A bill has been introduced in the U.S. House of Representatives

But, remember, the bills do not prohibit companies from looking

at your social networking sites; they only ban asking applicants

for usernames and passwords. So….be careful what you put online!

So13 training and experience t e evaluations this slide nfe
SO13: Training and Experience (T&E) why? Evaluations(this slide, NFE)

  • These are an excellent way to document a person’s past experiences and relevant KSAs

  • I particularly find the “behavioral consistency” method useful (374-377)

  • Many organizations have begun to use these

  • They are an excellent first step in any applicant screening process

  • They can be easily implemented in small organizations as well as large ones

  • Many organizations try to collect this information during an interview, but the interview

    • Is not long enough to collect this information

    • Does not provide a written permanent product that others in the organization can then evaluate

So13 training and experience t e evaluations this slide nfe1
SO13: Training and Experience (T&E) why? Evaluations(this slide, NFE)

  • They are based on the following assumptions

    • Job applicants should be evaluated on the basis of behaviors that show differences between superior and minimally acceptable employees

    • These behaviors can be identified by SMEs who have observed superior and marginal performance on the job

    • Applicants’ past accomplishments are predictive of their future behaviors (sound familiar as behaviorists?)

    • Applicants’ past accomplishments can be reliably rated by SMEs

So15 briefly describe behavioral consistency t es
SO15: Briefly describe behavioral consistency why? T&Es

  • Job applicants describe, in narrative form, their past accomplishments in several job-related areas (usually 5-7) that have been determined to discriminate between excellent and marginal job performance

  • Asked to answer questions such as

    • What are examples of your past achievements that demonstrate the necessary abilities and skills to perform these job behaviors?

      • What was the problem on which you worked?

      • What did you do to solve the problem, and when did you do it?

      • What was the result of your actions?

      • What percentage of credit do you claim for this achievement?**

      • What are the names and contact information for individuals who can verify the achievement and the credit you claim?**

  • Rating scales that describe job-related behaviors that distinguish between superior and marginal performance are used by raters to evaluate the applicants’ written (now usually electronic) descriptions.

(**I really like these questions, by the way!; SO16 NFE: meta-analyses have shown estimated validities of .45 – high

Page number for SO16 should be 370,1, not 371,1)

So17 19 reference checking
SO17&19: Reference checking why?

  • The principal purpose of a reference check is to verify what an applicant has said on the application form and resume

  • It serves primarily as a basis for disqualifying an applicant, not qualifying one

  • As it turns out, data indicate that the relationship between reference checking and obtaining recommendations from references have only a low to moderate relationship with job success

  • Many reasons for this, but one of the main ones is that the applicant selects the references

Sos 20 21 two legal issues related to reference checking that work against each other
SOs 20&21: Two legal issues related to reference checking that work against each other

  • Defamation

    • This is why organizations often refuse to give out any information about a former employee except the dates the person worked for the company

    • Every organization should have this policy

    • All requests for information should be forwarded to HR, who should refuse any information except the dates of employment

  • Negligent hiring

    • To protect itself, the hiring organization should seek reference information from the organizations with which an applicant has worked

This slide: NFE

(These are very important issues; the first discourages organizations to give out information,

The second encourages prospective employers to get seek it and get it)

So20 defamation
SO20: Defamation that work against each other

  • Defamation – learn definition:

    A written (libel) or oral (slander) false statement made by an employer about a previous employee that damages the individual’s reputation

  • (NFE) Text provides several case studies where the organization was found to have defamed a former employee

    • A written letter that contained a statement that a woman had brought a charge of sexual discrimination against the company

      Note that the statement was true, however, the court found that the company illegally retaliated against her for exercising her rights under Title VII

So20 nfe defamation
SO20(NFE): Defamation that work against each other

  • School superintendent told a person conducting a reference check that

    • The teacher was not really a good math teacher, being more concerned about living up to his contract than going the extra mile, and not being able to “turn students on”

    • Superintendent argued those were his personal opinions and protected by his first amendment rights (free speech)

    • Court ruled the statements were given with “reckless disregard of their truth or falsity” and therefore libel and slander were committed against the teacher

  • Lawyers at EMU have told all of their professors never to write a bad recommendation letter for a student; rather just to say no

(WMU’s request that we get students to sign a form when we provide references; one more slide on this)

So20 nfe defamation1
SO20(NFE): Defamation that work against each other

  • These type of law suits are becoming major issues for organizations

  • There are now firms that individuals can hire who will call their former employers, posing as potential employers (google “documented reference check”)

  • You need to be very careful and make sure everyone else in the organization is careful too

  • Short article about this at the end of the study objectives that appeared in the Wall Street Journal

So21 negligent hiring
SO21: Negligent hiring that work against each other

  • 21A Explain what it is

    A third party (e.g., coworker, client, customer) files suit against an employer for injuries caused by an employee

    The focus is that the employer knew or should have known that the employee who caused the injury was unfit for the job

    Thus, the employer’s negligence in hiring the individual produced the person’s injuries

(note the should have known clause; relevant to Western, as it is to all universities, based on any harm done to a

student - the student or the parent can file a law suit)

So21 negligent hiring this slide nfe
SO21: Negligent hiring, this slide NFE that work against each other

  • Western, for example, is concerned about this due to an event that occurred several years ago

  • WMU hired a professor who was later accused of sexual harassment (justifiably)

  • When they looked into his background and did some checking it turns out he had been accused of sexual harassment at two prior universities where he had worked

  • But both universities had agreed to a legal settlement with him wherein he would leave, but the charges (never legally proven) would not ever be divulged

(not uncommon; in a very rare incident in our dept., a doctoral student was shown to have published fake data.

Beyond a doubt. Agreement was reached that he would leave the program but we could not divulge the information to others, another slide)

So21 negligent hiring this slide nfe1
SO21: Negligent hiring, this slide NFE that work against each other

  • Consider the situation that has just been set up

  • If the prior universities had divulged the information to WMU, they could have been sued for violation of the legal settlement, and also for defamation of character since the charges were never proven

  • On the other hand, WMU was subject to a negligent hiring law suit because “we” accepted the recommendations that were given - that is, we did not conduct telephone reference checks

  • So guess what? We now do in-depth telephone reference checks for our faculty candidates

    • When applying they sign a form that permits us to contact people other than those they list as references

So21 negligent hiring this slide nfe2
SO21: Negligent hiring, this slide NFE that work against each other

  • Students from my Advanced Systems Analysis class developed the form that is still used today that gets permission from candidates to conduct those telephone references

  • I found myself in a very strange situation at the time (I was chairing quite a few faculty searches in those days)

  • For some reason, our then Provost, told us we had to send out the forms, but forbade us to send out the forms until after we had done the reference checks!

  • The Director of Employment, VP of Institutional Equity and I all objected, to no avail

  • I sent a very long email to our Dean, telling the Dean that as a selection specialist, I had to get the applicants’ permission before we conducted the reference checks, or I would be violating professional standards

  • We did that (undercover) in our department for about two or three years, until they changed the official procedure to the correct procedure

So21 negligent hiring fe
SO21: Negligent hiring (FE) that work against each other

  • 21B. Explain the Catch 22 situation that organizations can find themselves in with regard to reference checks

    As a prospective employer, you want to seek information that would prevent negligent hiring, but past employers won’t provide that information for fear of a defamation of character law suit

(so how do you get out of the Catch 22 - next slide)

So21 negligent hiring fe1
SO21: Negligent hiring (FE) that work against each other

  • 21C.

    How can an organization get out of this Catch 22?

    • If you can prove through written documentation that you attempted to collect background information, even if the previous employer refused to give it, then you are OK.

      Why does this procedure protect an organization?

    • As the text states, the legal question becomes:

      “Did the employer take reasonable steps and precautions to identify a problem employee, given the risks inherent in the tasks performed on the job?”

      Thus, if you attempt to get the information and document your attempts, courts will generally conclude that you have taken “reasonable steps and precautions”

(The steps a potential employer should take – with documentation – are provided in the text)

Intro selection interviews nfe
Intro: Selection Interviews (NFE) that work against each other

  • Researchers have studied selection interviews for over 80 years

  • Until recently, validity data were not good

  • Inappropriate questions and irrelevant factors influenced selection recommendations

  • Also, many resulted in adverse impact

  • New improved interviews, validity coefficients:

    • Structured interviews - .44, .57, .62

    • Unstructured interviews - .20, .31, .33

So24 what should and should not be covered in interviews
SO24: What should and should not be covered in interviews that work against each other

  • Most interviews try to do too much

  • There are three types of characteristics that are best evaluated in an interview due to the fact that it is a social situation:

    • Applied social skills, such as interpersonal and communication skills

    • Personality and habits, such as conscientiousness, emotional stability and extraversion

    • Fit with the job and organization (values, goals, norms, and “attitudes”)

So25a how useful are unstructured get acquainted interviews explain
SO25A: How useful are unstructured, get acquainted interviews? Explain.

  • They are not very useful

  • Interviewer tends to form subjective, global ratings that are not useful, although the interviewer believes they are (and therein lies the problem)

  • They are confident in their own ability to evaluate an applicant, even though their decisions are being influenced by irrelevant factors such as physical attractiveness, the strength of the handshake, eye contact, etc.

So25b rapport building in interviews intro to study by barrick stewart et al
SO25B: Rapport building in interviews, intro to study by Barrick, Stewart et al.

  • Does rapport building at the beginning of an interview help or hurt the validity of interviews?

  • Building rapport sets the applicant “at ease” and thus could enhance validity (you see more of the person’s actual repertoire)

  • On the other hand, if greater rapport results in the interview becoming more biased, then it could decrease validity

So25b rapport and first impressions
SO25B: Rapport and first impressions Barrick, Stewart et al.

  • First impressions do matter!

  • 1958 results – on average interviewers made a decision in four minutes

  • Barrick et al. confirmed the importance of first impressions in a series of recent studies

  • Evaluations made after a brief introduction and “getting to know you” phase and before any substantive questions correlated highly with hiring recommendations

  • Implications: First impressions formed early in interviews have a substantial effect on whether an interviewer recommends hiring the person

So21 nfe interviews and applicant s physical appearance first impressions
SO21 (NFE): Interviews and applicant’s Barrick, Stewart et al.physical appearance, first impressions

  • An applicant’s physical appearance has repeatedly been demonstrated to affect the evaluations of interviewers

    • Eye contact, smiling, posture, hand movements, self-promotion, ingratiation (latter two are double-edged swords)

    • In a number of studies, attractive individuals, especially women, were rated higher than unattractive individuals

    • In another, grooming (style of hair, clothing, makeup, and jewelry) was related to evaluations of female applicants

    • Clothing for women! Female applicants receive more favorable ratings if they wear masculine type clothing, i.e., a tailored navy blue suit, rather than a dress

      • No stiletto heals

      • No low cut (let alone see through) blouses

      • No tight blouses, tight sweaters, or tight suit jackets

      • No dangly earrings (same is true for men these days!)

(dress is very important – females must dress conservatively)

So23 two ways to reduce effects due to age race sex and other demographics
SO23: Two ways to reduce effects due to age, race, sex, and other demographics

  • Use highly structured interviews

  • Use experienced interviewers

  • *Legal issues: In a review of 158 federal court cases

    • 57% of cases involved the use of an unstructured interview

    • Only 6% involved the use of a structured interview

    • In 41% of the cases, the unstructured interview was found to be the cause of the unfair discrimination

    • In 0% of the cases, the structured interview was found to be the cause of the unfair discrimination

*Not for exam

So25 interviewers give more weight to negative than to positive information why
SO25: Interviewers give more weight to negative than to positive information. Why?

  • Even experienced interviewers give more weight to negative information than to positive information

    • In one study, unfavorable ratings on only one of several characteristics resulted in the rejection of the applicant in over 90% of the cases

    • Interviewers can usually specify why a rejected applicant would not be a good employee, but can not specify why acceptable candidates would be satisfactory

      • Implies clearer use of negative information

(the authors give a very nice environmental explanation for this; reasons on next slide)

So25 interviewers give more weight to negative than to positive information why1
SO25: Interviewers give more weight to negative than to positive information. Why?

  • Relative costs (consequences) to the interviewer and the organization

    • The greatest cost to the interviewer is making the mistake of selecting an applicant who fails on the job

      • His/her professional reputation suffers

      • Organization suffers loss of productivity

    • Rejecting an applicant who would, in fact, be a successful performer, has no real costs

      • Who would know since the person was not hired?

    • Thus, cost is lowered by rejecting marginal or doubtful candidates

(all points FE)

So33 validity of an individual interviewer vs an interview panel
SO33: Validity of an individual interviewer vs. positive information. Why? an interview panel

  • There is a common belief that a panel of interviewers will produce more reliable, valid evaluations than an individual interviewer

  • The data just do not support that

  • (NFE) There are at least three reasons for why a panel may not produce more reliable and valid ratings

    • Panel interviews tend to be more unstructured than individual interviews

    • Facing a group of interviewers is more intimidating (and can be very intimidating) than facing an individual interviewer, and that may inhibit the answers from an applicant

    • The social interaction between and among the members of the panel affect the ultimate rating (which may not be a good thing, particularly if you have a member of the panel who is a “domineering” person)

So33 validity of an individual interviewer vs an interview panel this slide nfe
SO33: Validity of an individual interviewer vs. positive information. Why? an interview panel (this slide, NFE)

  • Have any of you ever had a panel interview?

  • My own experience as an applicant has always been bad when I have been interviewed by a panel

    • I had a panel interview with the then Upjohn at the newly built “Taj Mahal”

    • I had worked as an intern for two years in one of the departments and the manager wanted to hire me full-time

    • There were nine members on the panel, all white, all male, all at least 15 years older than I was

    • One of the first things that happened - I walked into the room, sat down at the conference table, and without anyone moving or saying anything, the door to the conference room swung shut “by itself” and locked - you could easily hear the locking mechanism

So33 validity of an individual interviewer vs an interview panel this slide nfe1
SO33: Validity of an individual interviewer vs. positive information. Why? an interview panel (this slide, NFE)

  • I was doing OK until one member of the panel, who was one of the head trainers, asked me what I thought about a training program they had implemented with engineers to improve the functioning of their “right brains” (or left?? - whatever the creative side is supposed to be)

    • The training program consisted of bringing in engineers and having them finger paint

    • I admit I paused while I ran through a number of possible things I could say, one of which would clearly have resulted in my rejection

      • I also decided that I didn’t want to argue “theory”

    • After a brief pause, I commented that the data with respect to whether training improved performance should drive the training program, and then asked him one question:

      How are you evaluating the effectiveness/success of that training?

    • What do you think? Good or bad response/question on my part?

So33 validity of an individual interviewer vs an interview panel this slide nfe2
SO33: Validity of an individual interviewer vs. positive information. Why? an interview panel (this slide, NFE)

  • As it turns out, bad!

  • He said he evaluated the results based on how well the engineers liked it, and then launched into a diatribe about the practical realities of organizations vs. school-book knowledge

  • I was not offered the job (even though the manager for whom I worked with for 2 years wanted to hire me)

(OK, that’s it)

The end

The End positive information. Why?