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(Editor’s Note: Today’s article is brought to you by our friends at HRdirect, a trusted source for employee-related compliance, administration, and motivation tools. They serve as a one-stop shop to make employee management easier. Enjoy the read!)
Many organizations use employment tests and assessments. The reason is because they deliver business results. In an article from the strategy and research group Aberdeen, hiring managers that use employment tests report 36% more satisfaction with their candidate selection. In addition, the article states that companies using pre-hire screening tools report a 39% lower turnover rate and are 24% more likely to have employees who exceed performance goals.
Organizations report these types of results because an employment test can help determine that a candidate has the skills for the job. The Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) recently released new research that shows more than half of employers (56%) use pre-employment assessments as a way to gauge a job applicants’ knowledge, skills, and abilities.
So, follow my logic here – employment tests are a proven tool to help determine if a candidate is qualified for the job. And using tests in the recruitment process – to determine if a candidate is qualified – helps the hiring manager make better decisions. When hiring managers make better hiring decisions, then employees perform well and stay with the company.
I think it’s really important to add that the reason employment tests work is because they are valid, reliable, and align with its purpose. We’re not talking about back of a napkin quizzes. As a quick refresher:
VALID means that the test measures what it’s supposed to measure. For example, an organization might require that an accounting clerk know QuickBooks. A validated test would be able to report on a candidate’s level of QuickBooks knowledge.
RELIABLE means that the results are consistent. For instance, a customer service representative at a call center needs phone and online chat skills. A reliable assessment would provide a consistent report of the candidate’s customer service skills. If the candidate took the assessment twice, the results might not be exactly the same, but they would be close enough to determine the candidate’s skill levels.
The third piece is that the test aligns with its PURPOSE. For example, a test used in recruitment needs to align with the role that the candidate is being considered for. The organization should be able to explain the reason that they’re asking a candidate to take an assessment, whether that’s directly to the candidate or to an outside agency. You know what I mean. If you have any questions, don’t hesitate to bring your legal and risk departments into the conversation.
As a side note, the good news about validity, reliability, and purpose is that valid tests are reliable but reliable tests aren’t always valid. I always remember this because “you can be consistently wrong”. Ha.Ha.
I’m talking about tests today because our friends at HRdirect not only offer employment tests BUT they include the validation at no additional cost. Organizations can order the tests they need, no subscription required. The test can be taken onsite or online. The organization is provided with easy-to-read reporting that they can use in their recruiting selection process.
Finding qualified candidates will always be a challenge. Organizations are always on the lookout for ways to confirm a candidate’s knowledge and skills. Employment tests do that. But we must verify that the test is valid and reliable. The last thing we want is for someone to question our processes. And if by chance they do, we can feel comfortable that we’re using the right tools.
If you’re interested in learning more about employment tests, check out the HRdirect testing website. You can try a test for FREE. There are a couple of great downloads about implementing a testing program and content validation. And finally, there’s an on-demand webinar about the benefits of using employment test.23
This is obvious that employment tests can help recruiters identify the candidate skills.
However you cannot put all your faith into the test results, they should remain an indicator not a definitive selection process.
Sharlyn Lauby says
Hi Alberto. Thanks for the comment. Totally agree. Employment tests can be a valuable tool, especially when they have validation behind them.