Why You Should Use Pre-Employment Testing and Assessment

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Pre-Employment Assessment

In our last post we discussed the importance of conducting structured interviews to identify the best candidates and today we would like to tell you why you should also use pre-employment assessment to further improve the quality of hire at your company.

What is Pre-employment testing and assessment?

Pre-employment testing and assessment are one of the most objective ways of predicting job performance and company fit. It consists of the use of tests and questionnaires to assess candidates in terms of a wide range of aspects such as cognitive ability, critical thinking skills, personality, preferences, and motivation, among many others.

Well-designed and scientifically validated tests are a reliable and objective way of assessing candidates and they provide concrete results that can be standardized across all applicants. Recruiters can use test results to make better informed and more defensible hiring decisions. The use of pre-employment tests and assessments by both large and small companies is significantly increasing year by year. For example, the publisher of the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI) test, states that 89 of the Fortune 100 companies use their personality test to screen candidates and predict future success.

1. Pre-employment Testing and Assessment are more objective

Rely on objective data to make better hiring decisions. Pre-employment tests can provide you with standardized, useful insights on candidates and predict job performance and company fit. By using this data to identify and hire the right candidate you’ll also improve the overall productivity and effectiveness of your teams.

Unlike face-to-face interviews, pre-employment testing allows you to assess a wide range of applicable skills and personality traits. It allows you to assess various characteristics of the candidate such as cognitive ability, strategic thinking, subject-area knowledge, confidence, problem-solving ability, leadership ability, agreeableness, organizational skills, helpfulness, analytical skills, risk-taking, productivity, initiative, honesty, people skills, reliability, positivity, empathy, collaboration, etc.

2. Pre-employment Testing and Assessment increase employee retention

As important as hiring the right candidate, it’s crucial for companies to retain talent and reduce turnover. With pre-employment testing and assessment, you can screen candidates more efficiently for aptitude and personality and assess whether a candidate is likely to stay in the role and fit in with the company culture.

To assess if candidates are fit for a position, there are many factors that can be considered such as a passion for learning; overall ambition; ownership and initiative; empathy; communication skills; critical thinking skills; collaboration skills; honesty; motivation; curiosity; etc. Screening for these skills during a standard face-to-face interview can be really difficult.

Employees that aren’t the right fit for a job will eventually underperform in terms of engagement with the role and productivity and, thus, are more likely to leave. And as you well know, replacing a bad hire can be very expensive and time-consuming. But pre-employment testing and assessment can reduce costs on hiring and training costs by providing you with data that will help you hire the right people for a position the first time.

Contrary to what people normally think, pre-employment testing and assessment can increase the legal defensibility of your hiring process when used correctly. The use of pre-employment testing and assessment has to follow the same guidelines as any other hiring selection method (including resumes, interviews, etc.)

These guidelines state that pre-employment tests and assessments are completely legal to use as long as they are job-related. Tests have an additional layer of legal defensibility due to the fact that they provide employers with objective, scientifically validated predictors of success in a job, in opposition to other subjective hiring methods. These actually give companies a chance to better defend their hiring procedures if someone questions their hiring process legality.