In a 2011 study conducted by the Society for Human Resource Management, it was revealed that roughly 18 per cent of companies used personality tests in the hiring process. However, chances are this has increased exponentially since then, as many industrial and organisational psychologists along with the Association for Test Publishers believe its popularity is growing at a rate of 10-15 per cent per year.
“When used correctly, cognitive and personality tests can increase the chances that new employees will succeed,” says Harvard Business Review’s Ben Dattner. “Since the cost of a bad hire is widely estimated to be at least one year’s pay, there are huge incentives for organisations to get hiring right.”
Even so, Dattner warns that too many organisations use the wrong psychometric assessments in the wrong way. So, in order to minimise the risks and maximise the potential of psychometric tests for recruitment and HR, here is the lowdown from Skillsarena, experts in talent assessment, engagement, and consultancy.
How to implement psychometric tests
- Understand and identify your requirements
First and foremost, psychometric tests need to be appropriate for both the company culture and the vacant position. Therefore, you must take the time to identify the metrics that candidates will be evaluated for and how they correlate with the job’s responsibilities in addition to your business’s philosophy.
- Use to inform and advise
Despite the fact psychometric tests are extremely effective at gathering information about a candidate’s persona and proficiency, they shouldn’t be used in isolation. Psychometric tests can compliment CV content and interview performance to inform and advise any recruitment or HR initiative for better results.
- Undertake in a controlled environment
One potential issue with psychometric testing is that the participant may be tempted to cheat. To avoid this from happening, you may want to have the assessment take place at your office, through a conference call, or under other controlled circumstances.
Why you should consider psychometric tests
- Accuracy and consistency
Seeing as candidates will be assessed using the same criteria, you can guarantee the utmost in accuracy and consistency. This also eliminates favouritism and the possibility that candidates will be judged according to bias or prejudice, such as race or education. The customisable nature of psychometric testing also means that other vacancies can be filled with the same levels of reliability.
- Stability and performance
Psychometric tests can go a long way in providing businesses with staff stability for many years to come. Selecting candidates with an attitude or outlook that matches up with the company culture not only ensures solidity, it can also bring about better performance and productivity.
- Time and money
It is fair to say that the cost of recruiting new staff can spiral out of control quite easily. But with psychometric tests, several parts of the process can be eliminated almost immediately, allowing only the very best candidates to reach the interview stage. New hires may also be less likely to leave, thus reducing staff turnover.