Pre-Employment Testing Types
It is legal for employers to run pre-employment tests alongside background checks on potential job candidates. However, recruiters should ensure that the tests are non-discriminatory, properly administered, and validates accordingly. For recruiters, picking one candidate based on the presented resume and interview is quite daunting, especially if there is a need to predict the best hire for a company’s monumental task—and avoid bad hires.
Pre-employment tests are the best add-on tools that hiring personnel can use to get better insights into the applicant’s abilities and future success. The tests should give a standardized score to facilitate easy comparison if several applicants are involved. The common tests include;
1. Cognitive Ability
Cognitive tests are used to evaluate the candidate’s intelligence in various ways. Common pre-employment cognitive tests include an IQ test that evaluates the individual’s ability to solve problems, think flexibly, and learn. There are specific content skills, such as English language tests, reasoning, maths, or science.
Cognitive tests are commonly used owing to their low-cost nature and the potential to predict job performance of a candidate. Nonetheless, recruiters should not overly rely on its results as they are subject to ethnic and racial bias. To avoid such cases, ensure that the tests are job-related. You should also administer the same test to all candidates to level the qualification grounds.
2. Physical Assessments
As the name suggests, physical tests evaluate the candidate’s flexibility, endurance, and strength. This important test perfect for vacant jobs that require physical exertion, such as athletic training and on-site construction. Insist on running physical assessments, especially on jobs that employee’s safety relies on their physical capability. This helps to eliminate applicants who will stand at risk if employed.
When conducting these tests, ensure that you avoid potential discrimination. Refer to every candidate’s medical histories as they can help when selecting the physical assessment test to administer for each.
3. Personality Tests
Before hiring a candidate, it is important to evaluate the individual’s interpersonal skills, motivation, and attitudes. Like cognitive ability tests, personality tests are commonly used during the hiring process, as they are cheap and easy to score. Integrity and honesty assessments fall in this category, as they evaluate the candidate’s tendency to deceive, lie, or steal.
Other personality pre-employment tests should measure the individual’s agreeableness or extraversion, especially for marketing jobs to know how well the person will interact with clients if hired. The main drawback of these tests is that they can be manipulated easily, are subjective, and has some degree of bias.
4. Skills Assessment
Skills tests do not focus on abstract personality traits but measure the actual skills of an individual, which could be soft skills such as attention to detail or hard skills such as computer literacy. For instance, secretarial candidates can take a typing test to show how accurate and fast they can type.
The only limitation of skills assessment is that they are time-consuming. Job applicants will take much time submitting their work or giving presentations. The managers also need some time to evaluate the applicant’s results. Therefore, this test can be used in the last stage of hiring when there are few remaining potential candidates.
Pre-employment tests make it easy to sift through candidates and disqualify those who don’t meet the minimum requirements. If the candidate scores highly on the test and meets other hiring criteria, these tests can be used as a final push when making a hiring decision. The key to succeeding in this is using an accurate representation of qualities required from the candidates.