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Why the Rise in Psychometric Testing?

A woman undergoing some psychometric testing

In recent years, more and more companies have added psychometric testing to their repertoire of recruitment methods. While traditional methods, such as phone screens, in-person interviews, and reference checks, are all effective ways of gaining insight into a candidate, psychometric testing can confirm those insights by evaluating the candidate’s strengths, areas for development, and whether or not they will fit on a certain team or within an organization’s culture.

There are generally two types of psychometric testing:

  1. Aptitude/cognitive assessments

    These tests measure specific skills or abilities, such as spelling/grammar, data entry, math skills, or general software knowledge.

  2. Personality assessments

    These tests build behavioural and role profiles. The length and depth of these evaluations vary, and can take anywhere from a few minutes to several hours to complete. Popular examples of these types of tests include the Myers-Briggs and Thomas assessments.

The following are key points to remember should your organization decide to incorporate psychometric testing into its recruitment methods:

  • Do the training and certification sessions

    Many psychometric testing tools allow new users to complete certification sessions that will teach them how to read test results accurately. Ensure that someone on your team undergoes the proper training so that your organization can make the most of its new testing tool.

  • Keep the testing environment quiet and relaxed

    Candidates answer best when they are not nervous. Ensure that your testing room is silent and soothing; that way, when you encourage your candidates to answer straightforwardly and honestly (which you should always do), they will be more inclined. Still, there are those who will try to produce answers that speak to the role rather than themselves. Thankfully, many psychometric testing tools can identify inconsistent or conflicting responses. If that’s the case, you can have the candidate retest if you choose.

  • Psychometric tests are NOT the be-all-end-all

    Hiring decisions should never be based on psychometric tests alone. Traditional methods, such as interviews, still have their place. A psychometric test is just another piece of the puzzle. Test results won’t guarantee on-the-job performance – It’s important to remember that no matter how rigorous your recruitment process is, you can never be 100% sure you’re hiring the right person. However, despite that reality, the more evaluation tools you have at your disposal, the more likely you are to find that perfect fit. Psychometric testing is another way to diversify your recruitment methods and increase that likelihood.

Psychometric testing and current employees

Psychometric tests can also play a part in managing performance and improving team cohesion. By evaluating your current employees, you can build team profiles that identify where strengths and vulnerabilities lie, how differing communication styles come into play, and what best practices you can implement to enhance performance going forward.

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