Recruitment Definition and Meaning:
Recruitment i.e. induction of personnel in any organization is the first and most important stage in personal administration. In fact, we can legitimately say that it forms the first step of personnel administration. The latter really begin taking a practical shape only with the recruitment of its personnel. Stahle is right when he says, “Recruitment is the cornerstone of the whole personnel structure.” The usefulness and relevance of the government and administration to society depend upon a sound system of recruitment. The increasingly technical nature of public service and the growth of democratic ideas and institutions have made the issue of recruitment today more important than ever before. One of the basic problems before an organization is how to find suitable persons for carrying out the duties of various offices or seats at various levels. In other words, the basic problem before any organization is the problem of recruitment of personnel.
E. N. Gladden is of the view that “clearly, a civil service history can be epitomized as the history of the recruitment of officials, since on this first essential step largely rests the nature and degree of usefulness of the administrative Machinery.” No aspect of Public Personnel Administration is more important than recruitment because if the administration recruits wrong, incompetent, and inefficient persons, it will make the administration permanently weak, inefficient, and incompetent. Even the best policies of training and promotion cannot improve the capacity and efficiency of faultily recruited persons. Only the best, most talented, and most efficient persons are required for complex and complicated administration. Administration, after all, is a human effort put in by a team of human beings. These efforts can never be successful if the human material is incompetent. Recruitment is the process of attracting the services of competent human beings for carrying out the work of administration.
The need for a sound recruitment policy was first recognized by China long ago. In modern times, Prussia was the first country to evolve a sound recruitment system. In contemporary times, different countries have adopted different means for the recruitment of personnel. However, the most common and most useful means happens to be recruitment on the basis of merit.
The term “recruitment” does not have a precise meaning. For a layman, it is something like picking up persons for filling up jobs lying vacant in some offices. It is often used as a synonym for an appointment. But in the technical phraseology, recruitment means to attract the proper and suitable type of candidates for the posts to be filled and it is the pre-stage of appointment. Recruitment has been variously defined by several scholars.
In the words of D. Waldo, “Public Recruitment is the process through which suitable candidates are induced to compete for appointments to the public service.” Recruitment is the entire process of filling up vacant posts, from the advertisement to the appointment and placement of a selected person in the vacant post.
According to Stahle, “Recruitment means securing the right people for particular jobs and it may take the form of advertising for large groups of employees.”
L. D. White defines Recruitment “as specific steps taken to attract suitable candidates to apply for an examination.”
According to J. D. Kingsley, “Public Recruitment may be defined as that process through which suitable candidates are induced to compete for appointment to the public services.”
Thus, Recruitment is an integral part of the broad process of selection, which includes the process of examinations, interviews, certification, etc. It is a process by which persons are attracted, tested, and selected for the services to fill up vacant posts.