Past research comparing the relative influence of objective and subjective applicant qualifications within the interview context suggests a dominant influence of subjectively assessed applicant qualifications. However, methodological concerns cast doubt upon this conclusion. The present investigation overcomes previous methodological limitations by reanalyzing data from Kinicki and Lockwood (1985) using covariance structural modeling. Twenty-four professional recruiters interviewed 91 college seniors. Results indicate interviewers differentiate between applicant objective and subjective qualifications, but perceptions of applicant subjective qualifications and interviewing skills are indistinguishable. The interviewer's subjective impression of the applicant completely mediates the effect of applicants' relevant experience levels, but not academic achievement. This finding suggests the possibility that academic achievement be entered into the final hiring decision independently of interviewer judgments. The current results indicate a positive relationship between interpersonal attraction and interview outcomes, perhaps suggesting interviewers are measuring applicant fit in addition to job skills.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Applied Psychology
- Organizational Behavior and Human Resource Management
- Life-span and Life-course Studies