When a company is searching for suitable candidates to fill a job position, the resume is the first impression of what experiences, abilities, and skills they possess. Yet and still, it's not possible to understand specific qualities that aren't on the resume.
If they are a serious candidate, the employer would need a comprehensive demonstration to showcase specific characteristics. That's where recruiter assessment tests can help. While the HR department might already have a method to weed out the best applicants from the others, this testing method is worth trying.
Here's why your company should incorporate a candidate assessment test today.
Skills Assessment Test: What Is It?
The general idea is to assess an applicant's ability to handle certain situations, but what is a skills assessment test for employment? Typically, the test is a tool utilized by recruiters to determine the candidate's abilities. The person's score will indicate if they have the necessary traits to fulfill the job description adequately.
The recruiting assessment test comes into play once you review someone's resume and the employer wishes to start narrowing down the pool of candidates that will come in for an interview.
Are There Any Other Assessment Methods Than Skills Recruitment Assessments?
Recruiter assessment tests aren't the only methods at your disposal when you assess a candidate. Other notable ways to gauge their abilities include job interviews, screening resumes, reference checks, and simulated exercises.
Many recruiters incorporate more than one recruitment assessment during the hiring process. The end goal is to attract, sift through, and bring on the most highly skilled contenders as an asset to the company.
The primary advantage of recruiter assessment tests for employment is that employers can administer and score consistently. These standardized tests are scientifically designed to evaluate applicants across several parameters and produce a score to summarize their performance for each category.
In quantifying someone's skill and generating a score, the results serve as the most objective method of separating the best candidates from average applicants based on their abilities. This testing method also ensures that there's less bias present during the hiring process.
Lastly, it gives employers an extra boost of confidence that only the most skilled candidates are moving forward on the path to getting an open position filled.
Consider this; when you meet someone for an interview, they show you what they want you to see. You can rest assured that you aren't seeing the most accurate version of the person in front of you. It is also the case with resumes.
You see the best attributes that the candidates possess without any way to determine what their weaknesses may be. Studies show that employers have noticed that 85 percent of applicants fabricate their credentials and skillsets on their resumes.
Even the reference checks aren't necessarily accurate because the review you receive is subject to the person's bias. If the reference favors the candidate, you will receive a more glowing summary of their work ethic and skills, whereas someone who doesn't like the candidate may speak more harshly than what is true.
For those reasons, recruiter assessment tests are the most efficient, cost-effective, and accurate method to assess the pool of applicants. Once you gather the strongest candidates, you can further evaluate them individually through simulated exercises and interviews.
What Are the Types of Recruiter Assessment Tests?
Even though the objective seems straightforward, it's not easy to find the best candidate for the position you want to fill.
If you have expectations for what you'd like to see from the ideal employee, it doesn't mean you'll find what you're looking for right away. It's more challenging than you'd think to match a skill set to a job in reality.
What is a recruiting assessment supposed to do? It should take the guesswork out and show you what you lack from specific individuals and what you can hope to see if you give them the job.
The parameters of the tests are objective, and you're assured unbiased results on the type of personality they have, their gifts, and their shortcomings.
It's wise for a company to choose more than one form of assessment to get a holistic understanding of the person they'll be hiring.
Here are the most common types of recruitment tests:
Aptitude tests are excellent for examining a potential employee's professionalism, capability to achieve company goals, attitude toward challenges, and problem-solving skills. An aptitude test hones in on the person's temperament instead of their expertise or technical abilities. It's a way to ensure that the candidate fits in with the company culture.
A domain test is a structured evaluation that assesses the applicant's knowledge in a particular domain necessary to fulfill the duties of a job.
You can customize a domain test to determine abilities in areas such as operations, sales, finance, marketing, strategy, accounting, project management, communications, and more. These tests can gauge functional and technical abilities and general aptitude for the position.
Communication tests are written assignments and oral evaluations to assess the applicant's overall fluency, pronunciation, grammar, and listening comprehension.
How familiar are they with business language and understanding of how to convey their points persuasively and authoritatively? The ideal candidate can retain a wealth of information while responding in the appropriate company language.
Consider a behavioral test to determine how a potential employee will behave depending on the conditions they face while in the workplace. It includes scenarios regarding conversations with management, unexpected assignments and deadlines, team conflicts, and more.
It'll give you a glimpse into how they might react, whether they seem to be able to adapt to change, and if they can handle pressure. It also allows you to identify and analyze the candidate's capability to maintain relationships in the workplace.
A psychometric test is a scientifically constructed psychological assessment to determine the applicant's intelligence, personality, and emotional capacity. It's one of the best ways to filter out candidates that don't match the psychological makeup that the company prefers.
Technical tests are beneficial for job openings in programming, coding, software engineering, and similar areas. You can develop a test specific to a position to test the candidate's expertise and ability to perform the duties they'd have if hired.
Why Every Recruiter Should Use Skills Assessments?
Here are the primary benefits of utilizing a skill assessment test:
- Fair: A skill assessment test allows candidates to see that the hiring process is unbiased and that they are being fairly judged based on their knowledge and qualities.
- Save time: An excellent resume and interview can sometimes be misleading as the person hired shows significant gaps in those highlighted skills once hired. Identify these weaknesses early on with the skills test and avoid wasting time restarting the hiring process if they underperform.
- Remove your bias: A skills test can help the employer not be biased when judging the person before them. More experience may make you inclined to hire someone less fit for the position than someone with less experience. However, the skills test will be accurate and precisely reflect their capabilities.
- Periodic assessments: The skills assessment test is also helpful beyond the initial stage of recruitment. You can assess current employees periodically to determine if they need further training or gauge where they have grown or regressed.
How To Make Skills Assessments Part of Your Hiring Process?
This topic brings us back to the question, what is a skills assessment test?
It's easy to go online and find a couple of tests that seem to fit what you need for an open position and use them. However, you must be more selective and strategic when you decide to add this element to the hiring process. Here's how you go about adding a skill assessment test to the company recruitment and retainment policy:
Step 1: Find the Gaps
Before you can create a skills assessment test for a specific job, you have to identify your company's needs as a whole.
What attributes and skills do you want every employee to possess, regardless of their role? What skills are necessary to drive the company to reach individual and collective business goals? What gaps do you have that you'd like a new hire to tackle?
For example, are there any technical skills that you're lacking in a particular department that could be useful in improving customer satisfaction? Add that to the test! Any soft skills that are necessary to maintain morale and enhance company culture?
Add those too! It's all about understanding where you are and what direction you want to go in as a company. Incorporate any skills, knowledge, and behaviors essential to consistent progress and daily operational success.
Step 2: Select Your Hiring Goals
Now, you'll sit down to construct the ideal candidate. Examine the role you want to fill. Identify what they'll need to do, the knowledge they'll need, and the various skills required to perform adequately. Balance the needs for this specific job with the company's overall needs.
From here, you get to decide what you're targeting. So you want someone that's well-rounded and seems to be at or above average in nearly all the skills? Or, should you prefer someone that is a rock star in one or two areas but might be lacking in other categories?
One might present excellent growth potential because they excel in leadership and management, while the other may not seem to be a leader, but they offer overall stability. Add you create your assessment, keep these factors in mind, as it'll help you when you start evaluating great results.
Step 3: Pick the Right Assessment Tool
There are so many assessment tools out there that it can be overwhelming trying to pick the one that best fits your needs.
Ask yourself these questions before you make your final pick:
- How much is the assessment, and how does billing work?
- What type of recruitment assessment tests do you need?
- Would you like to include anti-cheating measures?
- Will you receive customer service should you have any questions?
- Does the platform have good reviews from existing customers?
- Are you searching for an assessment tool that gives the most accurate and objective results?
Use these questions to shape your selection and decide which tool best suits your budget and company needs.
Step 4: Develop a Test for the Role
This step is where you take all of the data from step 2 and create the skills assessment for the open position. Choosing a series of tests based on the skills you need for this role will help you filter through your options.
Reputable test assessment companies will also recommend which tests are best for the job function you identify. The suggestions are both helpful, and they allow you to save time when selecting the most relevant tests. They may even suggest skills that you hadn't considered applicable to the position.
You can usually add your own custom questions to the skills test if you'd like to put your personal touch on the assessment. An example would be using a specific scenario that has occurred at the workplace and asking the candidate how they would handle the conflict.
You can also instruct them to upload a video of themselves answering specific questions to add their resume to the assessment.
Step 5: Present Applicants With the Assessment
Once you've assembled the recruitment assessment test, it's time to administer it to potential employees to start the screening process.
The best way to ensure that anyone interested in the position takes the test is to include the link to the test in the job description.
Doing it this way allows you to collect all of the pertinent information, such as their email address, name, test scores, and anything else you request in one instance. If you have an applicant tracking system, you may also send out links to the assessment test directly after a rough screening.
For example, suppose you receive 200 applications, and at face value, 130 of them don't meet basic requirements like two years of experience, certifications, etc. You can save time by only sending the link to those candidates that meet the basic requirements.
At that point, you'll be able to keep track of who completes the assessments and how they rank when you compare their scores. The tests have a time limit, and you can select measures that prevent cheating. These factors ensure that you're getting an accurate representation of the applicant's abilities.
When it comes to determining which applicants will receive an invitation to interview, compare their test scores to your hiring goals and other benchmarks for the ideal employee. This step will require discernment, as you are the only one who knows what you want and need in the employee.
For example, if a candidate has an excellent overall score but has one glaring area where they are deficient, should you throw them out? Maybe. But if it's a skill that you can quickly train them in on the job, perhaps it's worth giving them an interview for further evaluation.
Step 6: Re-evaluate and Reassess Periodically
Ensure that you don't ditch your skill assessment test after hiring the ideal candidate.
Remember, you can still use the test long after hiring someone. It's an excellent tool to help further develop the employee's skills, chart their growth, and create a plan that addresses any obvious deficiencies they possess.
As the company and the position evolve, you can refer to the assessment and update it accordingly. For example, is there something you wished you would have tested for initially that you now want to add? Or, perhaps there's a skill that wasn't as important as you previously thought, and you'd like to eliminate it.
That's the beauty of a recruitment assessment test; you can change it as often as you please!
If you start using an assessment test today, you can drastically revamp the hiring process, significantly decrease the time it takes to find a suitable employee, and boost quality hires.
Ultimately, you want to remain unbiased and fair in your decision-making process as to who deserves an opportunity to help improve the company. By using objective measures and accurate data from recruiter assessment tests, you'll get and retain the best candidates available.