Selection rate, or also know as Yield rate, measures how many people are going from one stage to the next of the recruitment process. It can provide a lot of insight into how people are moving through the recruitment process. The first step will be to determine all the key stages in your recruitment process. Generally, most organizations have the following process: application/resume submission, resume review, phone screen, in-person interview, the second round of interview, then offer. 

The recruitment process can vary depending on the organization or role. For instance, some organizations have an assessment stage where candidates have to demonstrate their skills or take a work/personality style test. Senior level roles may have many more rounds of interviews as there are more key stakeholders.


Calculating Selection Rate

To calculate, take the total number of people who moved to the next stage and divide by the total number of people that were in the previous stage. Multiply the result by 100 to get the percentage. 


For example:

An HR Director role is available, which receives 200 applications. The applicant tracking system (ATS) identifies 75 resumes for the talent acquisition (TA) specialist to review. The TA specialist then chooses 12 candidates for a phone screening. Only 5 move forward to in-person interviews with the HR VP and only 2 to final round interview with the business unit leader. 

In this example, we want to know what the selection rate is of people moving to the phone screening stage. 

Selection Rate = (total # people moved to next stage / total # people from previous stage) x 100

Selection Rate = (12/75) x 100

Selection Rate = .16 x 100

Selection Rate = 16%


Selection rate can also be used to measure the success of various sourcing platforms. 

For example:

An entry-level Sales Representative role is posted to your job board, which is automatically pulled into a few job board aggregators. Including the job aggregators Indeed, LinkedIn Jobs, and Google Jobs. The sourcer on your TA team is also looking for passive job seekers through keyword searches on LinkedIn. While another sourcer is attending college job fairs. 

Selection rate can help identify the sources that are more beneficial. Look at the selection rate by the source as people move through the full process to get an idea of where the more qualified talent is coming from. You may find the cost of ads on the job board aggregators is not worth it. You’re only getting quantity vs quality. Where the more targeted efforts through passive job seekers and career fairs are far more beneficial, even if the cost is a bit higher. 


But what does your selection rate mean?


A low selection rate is not necessarily a good or bad thing. It depends on your practices. Especially when looked at from a general perspective, like in our first example. A low selection rate could indicate streamlined recruitment processes with a skilled TA team. Or it could mean talent is not applying to your roles and you may want to evaluate your employer brand

As with any metric, don’t look at the selection rate by itself. When using multiple metrics, it tells a story vs just a snapshot. For instance, with the example of selection rate by source. Continue to track how new hires from those sources perform within the company and their tenure. Maybe the selection rate showed that more qualified candidates came from the job fairs and passive recruiting, but those hires then have higher turnover rates. Maybe there are holes in the onboarding process or those hires were not the right fit for the org culture.

Selection Rate can be a tricky metric to track, especially in an organization with high-volume recruiting. An HR dashboard can do it for you. It will automatically calculate your metrics with easy-to-understand visuals

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