Realistic recruitment

Steffen Raub (Ecole Hoteliere De Lausanne, Lausanne, Switzerland)
Eva Maria Streit (Inn of the Anasazi, Santa Fe, New Mexico, USA)

International Journal of Contemporary Hospitality Management

ISSN: 0959-6119

Publication date: 1 June 2006



To report on the results of an empirical study on recruitment practices in the cruise industry and interpret these results from the perspective of theory on “realistic recruitment”.


Research was carried out in a two‐step approach. In the first step, semi‐structured interviews were conducted with recruitment specialists at seven cruise lines and recruitment agencies. Based on these qualitative results, a survey questionnaire was sent to recently hired employees of a European cruise line. A total of 60 completed questionnaires were used for the analysis.


The study provides support for the existence and importance of a “realistic” recruitment approach in the particular context of the cruise industry. Recruiters possess extensive knowledge about the companies and jobs for which they recruit and systematically communicate negative information about difficult living conditions and work contexts on board through a variety of media. Candidates ranked the importance and usefulness of different media in the recruitment process and assessed their satisfaction with information received during recruitment.

Research limitations/implications

Both samples – for the qualitative and the quantitative part of the study – are relatively small. The fact that we focused on employees of a European cruise line may limit the generalizability of results.

Practical implications

Realistic recruitment can have a positive impact on turnover and job satisfaction. We provide recommendations for implementing a realistic recruitment approach in the cruise industry.


The realistic recruitment approach is uniquely suited for the particular context of the cruise industry. To our knowledge this is the first empirical study on this topic in the context of the hospitality industry.



Raub, S. and Streit, E. (2006), "Realistic recruitment", International Journal of Contemporary Hospitality Management, Vol. 18 No. 4, pp. 278-289.

Download as .RIS



Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2006, Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Please note you might not have access to this content

You may be able to access this content by login via Shibboleth, Open Athens or with your Emerald account.
If you would like to contact us about accessing this content, click the button and fill out the form.
To rent this content from Deepdyve, please click the button.