ACCURACY OF INTERVIEWER JUDGMENTS OF JOB APPLICANT PERSONALITY TRAITS Academic Article uri icon

abstract

  • This study investigated whether interviewers can assess Big Five personality traits during a job interview. Four raters (self, interviewer, friend, and stranger) assessed the applicant's personality. Results from ratings for 73 applicants demonstrated that interviewer ratings of applicant personality correlate higher with self-ratings (r̄ = .28) than do stranger ratings (r̄ = .09) but less than ratings from close friends (r̄ = .39). However, correlations between interviewer ratings and self-ratings were smaller for the two job-relevant personality traits, Conscientiousness (r = .16, n.s.) and Emotional Stability (r = .17, n.s.) than for the other three personality traits. Variance in ratings suggested the applicants managed their self-presentation on these two traits during the interview. Thus, although interviewers can and do assess personality during the interview, they are not able to assess those traits that would best predict later job success. Finally, the moderating effect of interview design (i.e., structure and content) was assessed. The results revealed that job-relevant interviews, situational interviews, and behavioral interviews did not affect an interviewer's ability to assess personality. Although there was a small (positive) effect for more structured interviews, this affect was modest. The results of this study suggest that future research should examine whether the interview can be designed to assess personality directly, and what the gains to predictive validity are by doing so.

altmetric score

  • 0.5

author list (cited authors)

  • BARRICK, M. R., PATTON, G. K., & HAUGLAND, S. N.

citation count

  • 97

publication date

  • December 2000

publisher