Recruitment and selection



Recruitment and selection are very crucial components of human resource management (HRM) that enables an organization to compete effectively in its respective industry. As one of the functions of human resource management, recruitment, and selection processes are geared at attracting talented employees who drive goals of organizations.

Therefore, this paper provides a discussion on the recruitment and selection process as evidenced by Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. as the adopted case study. Moreover, this paper elucidates on Wal-Mart’s current state of labor, recruiting policies and methods adopted, and subsequent selection process employed by company’s human resource management. Lastly, this paper will outline how Wal-Mart’s image plays a crucial role in attracting and retaining talent.

Wal-Mart’s Recruitment and Selection Process

According to Soderquist (2005), Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. is a successful business brand that operates a chain of retail stores worldwide coupled with various club businesses. The success of Wal-Mart is manifested to its employees who are over 2 million located in more than 55 countries globally attributed as the company’s prized asset (Gereffi & Christian, 2009; Wal-Mart. 2017). The ever-changing and dynamic business environment continues to influence businesses to create and achieve their competitive advantage purposely to compete with their competitors effectively. Just like other businesses Wal-Mart have an organized focus towards recruitment and selection processes with an aim of attracting and hiring the best employees in the market to realize and sustain its organizational success.

Accordingly, the current Wal-Mart’s state of labor places emphasis on the existing employees as a source for filling managerial and other top-level positions. Whereas transfers are embraced to fill certain positions temporarily, Wal-Mart’s human resource management usually supports a number of trainees in various positions in the company (Wal-Mart. 2017). Some of them are further absorbed into the company and serve a great purpose particularly when sales are high, for example, the case of Black Friday, holiday shopping seasons and other promotional and marketing events (Wahba, 2015). Nevertheless, Wal-Mart has been known to utilize most of its internal recruitment as a source for promoting the current employees and trainees when they experience shortages in their various chain stores.

Findings from a survey carried by Reuters on Wal-Mart’s hiring strategy amongst the managers, human resource management, and other sales staff revealed that most stores were hiring temporary staff (Skariachan & Wohl, 2013). Moreover, one of the top-level managers in the study stipulated the need to staff Wal-Mart appropriately as a fundamental hiring policy. Nevertheless, Wal-Mart’s HRM account for recruitment needs through utilizing different recruitment sources and methods that meet the demands of those positions in respective stores (Gereffi & Christian, 2009). Furthermore, Wal-Mart ardently adopts the hiring and selection procedures reviewed and championed by the retail industry-specific as elaborated by Onnekikami (2016). Concisely, the company carries out the hiring process both internally and externally depending on the needs of those positions. On one hand, the internal hiring process entails recruiting employees from the existing staff, trainees or rather transfers amongst the stores. On the other hand, the company follows procedures of hiring through subsequent advertisements, institutions of higher education, and utilizing potential employees from previous applicants (Wahba, 2015; Skariachan, & Wohl, 2013).

Hughes and Rog (2008) acknowledge the relevance of strategies embraced in talent management that focusses on improving employee recruitment, employee engagement, and employee retention rates. Similarly, Wal-Mart is tasked with the responsibility of embracing proactive strategies with a view of attracting top talent in the market. The company understands the increased changes taking place in the global workforce and the repercussions expected when they lose top talents to their competitors. In addition to compensation and sharing out brand messages, Lana (2017) elaborates that talent acquisition professionals need to have their strategies updated with an objective of fostering partnerships with respective top talents in the market. Moreover, she examines how Wal-Mart was forced to enhance its talent acquisition strategies with an intention of matching the dynamic change experienced in the retail market.

The selection process is another fundamental component carried out by Wal-Mart when hiring employees. Baez (2013) accounts that business organizations are usually guided by designed selection which they gauge potential employees prior to employment and Wal-Mart is no exception. Wal-Mart, therefore, approaches the selection criteria that based on the needs of a job position. Just like other established companies, education and training backgrounds forms the basis for the criteria sought by Wal-Mart. Moreover, criminal background checks are also carried out as the company continues to protect its image worldwide. In the case of sales representatives, the company further tests applicant on knowledge of products, interpersonal skills, and other essential job requirements. Given that employees in senior and top positions are mandated to carry out high profile duties and responsibilities, Wal-Mart uses interviews in determining whether participants can help achieve its objectives. Personality tests are also undertaken to ascertain applicants’ capabilities in making decisions, handling and solving conflicts at the workplace. Wal-Mart’s HRM uses a range of these tests in the selection process across its stores worldwide.

It is imperative to note that the company carries out periodic background checks and screening, for example, David Tovar was forced to resign after a random education background was undertaken and it was established that he lied on his art degree (Abrams, 2014). The presence of the company worldwide boosts its image as a potential employer. Despite Wal-Mart’s brand image worldwide, the company continues to experience problems with high employee turnover. In order to foster employee retention, the company engages the employees through training and development programs, recognition and offering bonuses. Furthermore, the company utilizes the policy of promoting employees in the lower ranks into senior managerial positions as a motivating factor for their high performance. These attributes further play a crucial function of not only retaining the best talent but also attracting potential employees as an additional talent to the company.


Conclusively, this paper has provided a comprehensive discussion on Wal-Mart’s recruitment and selection process. The paper has detailed recruitment policies and hiring strategies that direct the recruitment process undertaken internally and externally. The paper has also highlighted the function of the Wal-Mart’s HRM in fostering talent management that further plays a key role in the recruitment and selection process. Subsequently, the selection criteria guide the company to identify potential applicants through structured interviews in the course of determining their respective capabilities that match its objectives. The selection criteria also enable the company to ascertain capable leaders who can make decisions and solve conflicts at their workplace once they are employed.

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  1. Abrams, R. (September 16, 2014). Walmart Vice President Forced Out for Lying About Degree. New York Times. Retrieved from <>
  2. Baez, B. (2013). Personality Tests in Employment Selection: Use with Caution. Cornell HR Review. Retrieved from <>
  3. Gereffi, G., & Christian, M. (2009). The Impacts of Wal-Mart: The Rise and Consequences of the World’s Dominant Retailer. Annual Review of Sociology, vol. 35, pp. 573-591.
  4. Hughes, J. C., & Rog, E. (2008). “Talent management: A strategy for improving employee recruitment, retention and engagement within hospitality organizations”. International Journal of Contemporary Hospitality Management, vol. 20(7), pp.743-757,
  5. Onnekikami, E. A. (2016). Human Resources Policies and Practices: Evaluating and Reviewing the Contemporary Recruiting Process. International Journal of Human Resources Studies, vol. 6(1), pp. 121-128.
  6. Skariachan, D., & Wohl, J. (June 13, 2013). Exclusive – Wal-Mart’s everyday hiring strategy: Add more temps. Reuters. Retrieved from <>
  7. Soderquist, D. (2005). The Wal-Mart way: The inside story of the success of the world’s largest company. Nashville: T. Nelson.
  8. Wahba, P. (2015). Here’s what Walmart is doing to win the holiday season. Fortune. Retrieved from <>
  9. Wal-Mart. 2017. About Us. Retrieved from <>
  10. Zimmerman, A. (August 12, 2014). Wal-Mart to Toughen Job Screening. The Wall Street Journal.
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