Eight Excuses Why You Are Not Using Assessments – and Why You Should Be (Part Two)

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In Part One of “Eight Excuses Why You Are Not Using Assessments – And Why You Should Be,” we discussed how assessments can protect you from legal risk, are a worthwhile investment for any size enterprise, and provide an accurate and crucial judge of personality for making sound hiring decisions. Part Two will address four more excuses.

5. It Doesn’t Work. I will answer this one with two questions: “Why do you think it doesn’t work?” and “Do you have evidence that it doesn’t work?” Assessments are one piece of the puzzle – they provide more in-depth information than you’d have access to otherwise and should be used in conjunction with other information points including structured interviews, applications, and reference checks. To ensure the assessments work, meaning they predict and measure what they should, make sure you are using validated assessments. This means the test has a proven relationship with job performance. This is often done by administering the assessment to current employees and collecting performance metrics. They can either be validated in the industry or a validation study can be conducted with your company to ensure the assessments are aligned with your culture and measure the competencies that are necessary to succeed in each particular role.

6. It Takes Too Much Time. Answer to this is “It doesn’t have to.” Lately, there has been a lot of focus on hourly workers, specifically Millennials. The research shows that this group, in general, doesn’t want to spend a lot of time applying for jobs. They expect that they can complete the process on their phone and that it will take less than 15 minutes. Although this is especially true of this generation, it doesn’t stop there.  More and more candidates, of all ages and position levels, are expecting the process to be easier and shorter. There are a few things we recommend to address this: 1) shorten the application. Only ask what you need to upfront. You will be able to collect more information further on in the process. 2) Utilize an assessment that is shorter to complete and taps into the most important job performance drivers, yet doesn’t compromise the quality of information being gathered on a candidate – especially important for attracting and retaining Millennials and Generation Z that are just beginning to enter the workforce.

7. I Am a Better Judge than an Assessment. How many times have you interviewed “the perfect candidate,” hired them, and then realized they were a completely different person? We hear this a lot: “The candidate I interviewed was not the candidate I hired.” Why is this? Relying on an interview, particularly an unstructured interview (where there are no standardized set of questions or method for rating), is most often no more effective at predicting performance than flipping a coin. Assessments can improve efficiency and effectiveness by allowing you to confidently eliminate candidates before the interview. While there will always be some degree of judgment and gut feel, make sure you are being subjective after you have all of the data.

8. I Need to Hire for Experience and Skills, Not Personality. Oh, how I love this one! It is often said that you hire for experience and skills, but fire for personality. If you neglect to take into consideration a candidate’s culture fit or core personality traits as they relate to the job, then you will likely experience performance issues. It’s also difficult to know what experience will result in success on the job, and in today’s tight labor market you may not be able to find enough candidates with experience aligning with your company and standards. You may also turn away exceptional candidates without experience starting a new career. Even if a candidate has the level of experience you expect, hiring assessments can give you the confidence that they will thrive in your organization.

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