For HR departments and hiring managers, job assessment tests - including tests that measure cognitive ability, physical ability, aptitude, personality traits and honesty - can offer a wide range of beneficial information that streamlines the hiring process. They can also increase the likelihood that new employees will be successful in their positions and reduce time to hire and recruiting costs.
Knowing how to evaluate the results of a job assessment test is crucial to finding the best candidate and fit for your company’s open position.
Research shows that at least 76% of organizations with more than 100 employees rely on job tests for external hiring. But it’s important to remember that the purpose of many of these tests isn’t always to evaluate wrong or right answers, but to see a representation of a candidate’s skills, thought process and professionalism.
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Whether you're hiring for executive positions, IT recruiting, or administrative roles, it is important to look beyond technical correctness and understand whether the candidate fits the work environment and demonstrates the potential to grow.
When evaluating assessment tests, it’s important to keep the bigger picture in mind, not only based on a candidate’s current skill set, but also their potential for the success in a new position.
Here are a few tips for how to evaluate the results of a job assessment test:
1. Create a job assessment test that demonstrates a variety of skills
Many job assessment tests focus on writing and editing ability, familiarity with evaluating and analyzing relevant information, creative problem solving, or strategic planning and leadership. Make sure that your job assessment test gives candidates the opportunity to demonstrate a breadth of skills.
2. Prepare for an onslaught of job assessments
Once you’ve assigned the job assessment test to your pool of candidates, it’s important for the hiring manager to block off a healthy chunk of time in their day, or possibly week depending on the number of applicants, to review the results of the test and make a well-informed hiring decision. If there are multiple decision makers in the hiring process, it may be beneficial to schedule a team meeting where the assessments are analyzed in a group setting.
3. Be strategic in selecting the most talented, qualified candidates
Set goals for what you’re looking for in a potential hire prior to reviewing the results of a job assessment test. Ensure that the answers provided by each candidate are aligned with your organization’s corporate culture and values.
When testing technical ability, aim to score tests electronically, cutting down on time, while also preventing decision makers from accepting or rejecting candidates on the basis of conscious or unconscious biases.
5. Be thoughtful and open-minded when evaluating test results
Many candidates come from diverse backgrounds and while a candidate may not have all of the skills or experience listed on your job posting, be open minded about what unique traits that candidate may bring to your company.
Look for candidates with competence to establish sufficient reasoning and learning skills, a strong work ethic, emotional intelligence, and a cultural fit in the workplace. Research shows that these traits are better predictors of performance than education or number of years of work experience.
While resumes, reference checks and interviews are still key parts of the hiring process, by leveraging the data culled from job assessment tests, employers receive a clearer picture of each candidate, used to make more intelligent hiring decisions.
When based on a combination of an applicant’s hard and soft skills, employers are more likely to make hiring decisions that have a positive impact on the organization’s bottom line. Creating a thoughtful and strategic plan for creating and evaluating the results of a job assessment test will increase your company’s likelihood of attracting and retaining top talent.
If you are an employer looking for assistance with your staffing, recruiting and talent management needs, schedule a free consultation with one of Sparks Group’s experts and get started today.