While in-person interviewing remains the traditional way to determine whether a candidate is right for a position, it’s becoming increasingly more common for employers to include psychometric tests as part of their recruitment process. Testing allows employers to gain a deeper insight into a candidate’s personality traits, work style, communication preferences, and motivators to assess fit for the role. Comparatively speaking these attributes are tougher to assess in an interview than technical competencies. The increase in popularity in psychometric testing has led to numerous questions and queries from both employers and candidates alike.
Here are a few Frequently Asked Questions:
What does testing reveal about a person?
Psychometric testing measures behavioural style, strengths, work setting preferences, and working relationships, as well as attributes related to the requirements of a specific role, its challenges, and the working environment. Assessments such as the Hogan Business Reasoning Inventory and the Watson Glaser measure for critical thinking skills which assess for numerical, verbal, and abstract reasoning skills. Psychometric testing for recruiting does not focus on technical competencies but rather on overall fit with the role and organization. Testing provides information about an individual’s ability to perform effectively in the context of the role they are being considered for and identifies a candidate’s potential derailers that may be overlooked during the interview process.
What do psychometric assessments add to the interview process?
Testing is an objective way for employers to test candidates against each other. The results enable employers to make unbiased comparisons and eliminate the guesswork and ‘trust your gut’ decision making that could lead to costly mis-hires.
How does the testing ensure the right person is in the right role?
The assessor’s knowledge and understanding of the context of the role is key to ensuring testing identifies that the right person is in the right role. The assessor conducts a pre-consultation meeting with the hiring manager and HR to fully understand the context of the role including key objectives and challenges of the position, environment and organizational structure. With this information, the assessor can more accurately measure for potential fit.
Who’s using the tests, and for what types of roles?
Organizations in both the private and public sector are using psychometric assessments for both leadership development and recruiting, typically at the manager level and up.
Can a candidate trick the test by saying what they think the employer wants to know?
No, not if the process is conducted by an experienced assessor who utilizes three to four different psychometric assessments to ensure validity and reliability, mining for relevant themes and patterns as related to the role. In addition, the assessor meets with the candidate for an assessment interview to validate the objective data. Assessment tools have varying levels of reliability and validity and it is important to note that the accuracy rate is never 100 percent. Personality is far too complex. The assessor’s role is to interpret the information from all the assessments, including the interview, and identify key themes and inconsistencies.
How important is psychometric testing in the first 90 days?
Psychometric testing information is very helpful for new role integration as it informs the organization on effective ways to integrate a new leader into the organization and identifies areas of development to coach them on to ensure their success.
How do companies apply the results? Is testing the deciding factor in hiring?
Based on our experience, testing does become a key deciding factor in hiring. However, we strongly recommend that testing be one component of the recruitment process balanced with thorough behavioural-based interviews and references.
- On November 29, 2017