Why Personality Tests Are Often Part of Hiring

Cohesive workplaces are the most fun. However, this rarely means the same thing as a homogenized workplace. Modern workplaces are diverse in many ways because they acknowledge the uniqueness of each individual. Among hiring processes such as interviews conducted in-house or by a staffing agency, recruiters have conventionally looked for insights into a candidate’s personality, not just their experience or qualification.

Of course, everyone is trying to put their best foot forward in an interview, which means a slacker is usually going to try and hide it from, say, a mortgage recruiter. This could mean a bad hire getting through an otherwise functional hiring strategy, and the results can often be quite expensive for any business. This is why many businesses have included personality tests as a more accurate way to gauge the candidates they hire. Here are a few reasons why personality tests are in use in many workplaces as well as a few reasons why they may not necessarily be as useful as everyone thinks they are.

A Stronger Way to Assess Candidate Strengths and Weaknesses

Candidates aren’t very accurate when it comes to self-assessment forms, especially with firms that have a few gaps in their talent acquisition strategies. Many will overstate their abilities and strengths to land a role they aren’t really equipped to handle. Most business managers, recruiters, and leaders understand how disastrous that can be. On the other hand, some brilliant candidates may understate their abilities, or not even be aware of how valuable they are in the first place. These could very well fly under your recruitment radar, which is no less disastrous when a competitor snags top-quality talent that you didn’t.

Personality tests act as a surer way to mitigate the risks associated with a candidate’s self-assessment. They are a much more structured way to assess strengths and weaknesses. With this information, recruiters and managers can identify key strengths that make certain candidates ideal for specific roles. At the same time, they can also identify areas that may require skill-building or enrichment. The candidate can then be put through the appropriate development program, which can often prove extremely beneficial in the long run, especially if the candidate possesses leadership potential.

Improve Team Functioning and Task Delegation

Once employers have a better grasp of what a new hire’s strengths and weaknesses are, they are in a better position to place this new hire in a position that fits them best. In other words, employers can choose which candidate may be the perfect fit in terms of productivity and teamwork across the organization. Being a good fit for a team isn’t just good for integrating the new worker, but also for boosting the team’s overall productive capacity. A personality test can help identify the type of candidate that may be the best fit for, say, your creative team. This will soon be evident in both individual and team performance appraisals down the road.

Another important advantage to knowing a worker’s strengths and weaknesses is that managers can delegate work among their team accordingly. Instead of forcing difficult tasks on team members that can’t handle them as well as another team member, assign tasks according to each team member’s capacity. This eliminates inefficiencies and smoothens workflows much more effectively.

Personality Tests are usually an Approximation

Assessment tests can only offer an approximation, whether in academics or in the workplace. They aren’t always an accurate depiction of a candidate’s abilities or flaws. Workplaces tend to use sophisticated personality testing methods, but they aren’t always perfect. For example, when interviewing consultants for VCISO services, you may find that a candidate seems far more knowledgeable and competent in person than according to the personality test.

Tests are at best good for placing a candidate somewhere on a spectrum. However, candidates are known to have abilities that may not be detected by standardized tests. Many can even break their own limitations and increase their capacity for growth. Ideally, personality tests should be used in conjunction with a recruiter’s own assessment to more accurately gauge candidates.

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