Whether you are trying a pre-employment assessment for the first time or switching assessment providers, knowing what to look for can help you choose the best test to get the job done. Keeping these three features in mind when comparing pre-employment assessments will help you find a test that works.
1. Job Relevance
Does the assessment measure traits and qualities that are important to the workplace?
Many pre-employment assessments are built around the measurement of broad personality models (e.g., the Five Factor Model), but very few personality models were developed with the workplace in mind. This means that many of the questions applicants answer have little to do with the actual job competencies. Not only can this be frustrating for applicants, but it leaves a lot of room for error when trying to predict who will best perform on the job.
Look for an assessment that uses workplace relevant competencies or traits rather than broad personality characteristics. By measuring workplace-specific competencies rather than broad personality traits, the pre-employment assessment will provide information that is most applicable in a work setting.
2. Predictive Validity
Does the assessment predict how a potential employee will perform on the job?
An effective pre-employment assessment should also be able to predict facets of work performance (e.g., job performance, teamwork, job satisfaction, and employee turnover). In other words, a good score on the assessment should translate into a good performance review if the applicant is hired.
Look for an assessment provider that can show evidence of validity studies for work-related outcomes like job performance. Doing so will lead to less guesswork in the hiring process and increase your hiring power.
3. Faking Resistant
To what extent can an applicant “fake” the test to make themselves look good or tell us what we want to hear?
Applicant faking (i.e., answering dishonestly) weakens predictive validity and can decrease the quality of hiring decisions. Given that applicant faking behaviors are widespread, they greatly undercut personality assessments’ potential to aid in hiring. Organizations would greatly benefit from using assessments that are resistant to faking.
Look for an assessment that incorporates response time or response latency into the applicant’s test score. Because faking takes longer than giving a true response, it is possible to mitigate faking by giving more weight to faster responses than slow ones.