Publication Date



Although both strategic management theorists and practicing recruiters endorse selecting applicants on the basis of "fit," precise delineation of fit in a selection context remains elusive. Moreover, the majority of previous work in this area has been based on anecdotes, case studies, or prescriptions rather than empirical evidence. The present investigation examines interviewers' assessments of job applicants in terms of both general and firm-specific employability (i.e., fit). Results suggest that (1) assessments of general employability differ from firm-specific assessments, (2) there is a firm-specific component to interviewers' evaluations of job applicants, and (3) interpersonal skills, goal orientation, and physical attractiveness contribute to assessments of fit (holding general employability constant), while objective qualifications (e.g., grade point average, extracurricular offices, years experience) do not. Suggestions for future research are offered.


Suggested Citation
Rynes, S., & Gerhart, B. (1989). Interviewer assessments of applicant "fit": An exploratory investigation (CAHRS Working Paper #89-13). Ithaca, NY: Cornell University, School of Industrial and Labor Relations, Center for Advanced Human Resource Studies.