The rise of psychometric testing means more roles now involve some form of assessment. But how do you keep sight of testing’s real benefits: more accurate and more efficient hiring? We give seven ways you can use psychometrics to make your hiring process more effective and more efficient.
Psychometric tests provide quick, effective and scientifically-robust predictors of workplace performance, all at the click of a button. Therefore, it’s unsurprising that organisations are incorporating psychometrics in record numbers. Despite this surge in popularity, few organisations use psychometrics in the most effective way.
When used ineffectively, the objectivity, scientific rigor and predictive power of psychometric is wasted. However when used correctly, psychometric assessments drastically improve the quality of hire, reduce costs, and save time for both employer and candidate.
To maximise the efficiency of psychometric testing processes, we at Test Partnership recommend the following procedures:
- Start psychometrics early: Psychometric tests are the ideal first-stage selection tool. With a few clicks, thousands of candidates can be assessed accurately and easily. Conversely, interviews are the least efficient first-stage selection tool, being labour-intensive for both employer and candidate. Using psychometrics first allows employers to identify top talent early on, ensuring that only high potential candidate make it to interview, saving organisations considerable time, money, and effort.
- Be choosy with candidates: Research shows that selection processes utility is directly proportionate to the selection ratio. For example, hiring the top 1% of performers is better than hiring the top 50%. This is particularly true with large candidate pools, as being choosy guarantees that only top talent are hired. Therefore, we recommend testing as many candidates as possible and only picking the very best to move through the selection process.
- Use a range of aptitude tests: Research shows that the number of aptitude tests used is more important than the specific tests used. For example, using numerical, verbal and inductive reasoning tests together is superior to using any of those three in isolation, regardless of the role. This is because aptitude test scores aggregate into measures of general cognitive ability, which is the strongest known predictor of job performance. Therefore, we recommend using a broad range of aptitude tests; don’t just stick to a single test or single test provider.
- Aptitude first, then personality: When used correctly, personality questionnaires are powerful selection tools. However research clearly shows aptitude tests to be the most powerful predictors of workplace performance, outperforming even the most well-designed interviews. Therefore we recommend using aptitude testing before personality testing, ensuring all successful candidates meet the intellectual demands of the role.
- Retest candidates for proof: The benefits of retesting candidates under supervised conditions are twofold. Firstly, it ensures that any dishonest candidates will be found out, detecting any cheating or unusual patterns. Secondly, telling candidates that they may be retested in itself acts as a deterrent, preventing cheating in the first place. Therefore we recommend you retest at later stages of the recruitment process, either at the final interview or the assessment centre.
- Use bespoke psychometric tests: Having bespoke tests designed specifically for your organisation offers numerous advantages. Bespoke tests ensure congruence between the assessment and the role, improving candidate experience, highlighting commitment to talent management and guaranteeing relevance to the role. Therefore, for large graduate schemes and volume recruitment processes we recommend asking for bespoke psychometric tests, rather than relying on off-the-shelf psychometrics.
- Avoid fixed-form aptitude tests: Modern aptitude tests employ large item-banks of questions, serving each candidate a unique set of items. Outdated aptitude tests give every candidate a fixed set of the same questions, which could be easily print-screened and shared online. Therefore we recommend that you avoid using fixed-form aptitude tests in favour of more secure item-banked tests.
We believe if you use psychometric test properly, your recruitment will be more efficient, more accurate, and ultimately cost less. The tips we’ve given here are a useful way to get started with psychometrics. If you’d like Test Partnership to have a look at your existing recruitment or selection strategy we are always happy to give advice on making your processes work better for you.
Oliver Savill is a software engineer with a strong interest in cloud-based assessment. Oliver ensures smooth & reliable online test delivery at Test Partnership serving as Director. Test Partnership was formed with the goal of providing accessible, convenient and effective psychometric tests.