The purpose of this paper is to examine the role of recruitment and selection activities as key elements in organizational entry. In reality, though closely connected, they often operate as separate activities with differing degrees of prestige and status attached to them. In this context Caplow's distinction between prestige and status is relevant, in the sense that it attempts to make clear the boundary between that which is fixed and verifiable (status) and that which is inherently subjective (prestige). Thus, ‘status is a measure of the influence explicitly assigned to a given position in a given organization. Prestige is a composite of opinion about the relative value of an individual or a group or a symbol in a given context.. For our purposes, perhaps more important than the distinctions between status and prestige are, firstly, the relationship between them and, secondly, the fact that the terms are equally relevant to the functional areas within organizations, which we shall term ‘sets of activities assigned formal status’. Status differences are, therefore, closely related to the hierarchical differences between positions and functions within organizations, and the extent to which such differences can be maintained will relate to the stability of organizations.
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