Journal of College & University Student Housing Vol. 47 No. 3 - 49

Hiring Decisions

	
The negative effects of a bad hiring decision may continue after the staff member departs the team, which could play out in multiple ways. The disruption of team workflow
may be the first component to be affected.
Duty and desk schedules may need revision,
displacing extra work to team members. This
can negatively affect team morale. The extra
responsibilities requiring redistribution may
increase the risk for staff burnout. Deciding to
make an immediate hire from the residual RA
candidate pool could pose its own challenges
with the new staff member now requiring
training while on the job. On-the-job training
can be extremely time consuming and difficult for all team members. Additionally, a regression in the team's group dynamics with
the loss or addition of team members may occur. A staff team that may have reached Tuckman's (1965) performing stage could revert to
the storming stage, undoing previous team development and relationship building efforts.
Lastly, the effect of the bad hire on the residential community may be apparent through
increased community violations in the corresponding residence hall area.	
	
Given the potential impact both positive and negative hiring decisions can have
on RA staff teams, residential communities,
and individual student experiences, these decisions are high stakes. This is compounded
by the substantial resources dedicated to staff
recruitment and training. There is a critical
gap in the literature concerning how supervisors making hiring decision incorporate
various aspects of the RA selection process
in their decision making. This study explores

how residence life staff at various levels incorporate staff selection information in their
hiring decisions. Specifically, this research
study addresses the following research questions:

*	 What components are used within
RA selection processes across various
institutions?
*	 What components of the RA selection
process are most influential in hiring
decisions?
*	 Is there a difference in hiring decision
making by professional status,
hiring experience, race, gender,
institutional type, or master's degree
concentration?
*	 Is there a difference in hiring decision
confidence and candidate evaluation
confidence by professional status,
hiring experience, race, gender,
institutional type, or master's degree
concentration?

METHOD
A 19-item survey was uniquely designed to
address the research questions and was distributed to all ACUHO-I members coded as
hall directors via ACUHO-I's Endorsed Research program. The survey was also shared
directly with institutions that responded to a
post on ACUHO-I's online discussion forum
indicating that they employed graduate assistants within their housing departments.
	
Data analyses included descriptive statistics for all hiring decision influence variables.
Mean scores of all influence and confidence
variables were compared across all grouping

Specifically, fictitious candidates with more favorable
(perceived attractiveness) Facebook pictures received
approximately 38% more interview invitations than candidates
with identical credentials and less favorable pictures.
46

The Journal of College and University Student Housing



Journal of College & University Student Housing Vol. 47 No. 3

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