Hiring assessments are powerful tools for any talent acquisition team. When properly used, these assessments provide insights and evaluations of candidates that target job-specific skills, and back up these evaluations with qualitative data. Thus, good hiring assessments enable the talent acquisition team at an organization to make informed hiring decisions, supported with data-backed evidence.
However, from a candidate perspective there’s a number of concerns that circulate these assessments. The idea that failing one of these tests because of something like a “bad personality” is one of many examples, but an even bigger concern goes beyond passing and failing. There is the idea among some candidates that hiring assessments aren’t used to help support a decision, but actually used to help remove a candidate from contention for a job, without raising some sort of profiling discrimination.
While the idea sounds absurd when written out, the fear is real. There are candidates who, when asked to take a hiring assessment for a job, won’t see an opportunity to advance in the hiring process – they’ll see it as a precursor to elimination that they cannot control. Even more, they feel they can’t control this because they’re not supposed to, that the assessment is designed so that they’ll fail.
First, the idea that a hiring assessment is used to eliminate a candidate from consideration is foolish. In a way, everyone loses when a candidate isn’t hired. The turned down candidate must continue their job search longer, having to restart the hiring process with another company, which takes time and energy. The company, on the other hand, has just spent time and resources on a candidate who didn’t have enough to earn an offer, which means the company must now spend more money and use more resources to find a candidate who will. All the while there is a vacant position in the company that isn’t bringing money in because there’s nobody filling the position. It’s a drain on resources, money, and time when a candidate doesn’t work out – the idea that resources would be used in order to turn a candidate down is somewhat silly.
However, the concern will exist on the candidate’s end regardless. This is where transparency on the assessment process becomes critical. When you’re using a tool such as a hiring assessment, it’s important to explain to the candidate what the assessments are in place for, and how they benefit the candidate. This doesn’t need to be a lengthy explanation, but highlighting how the assessments are designed to test job skills and personality traits that the candidate will be using on a day-to-day workflow, and that it also gives the candidate a better idea of the position they’re applying for and what they’ll need in order to succeed should be a sufficient explanation. Be available to answer a candidate’s questions, should they have any, regarding the assessment process itself. One thing that raises red flags for the candidate is that assessments are seen as “person versus computer” rather than a traditional interview, which “person talking with person.” In the former, there margin for error and ability to justify answers are vastly different than the latter. By adding a human aspect – whether it be explanation beforehand, availability to answer questions, or something else – you’ll be creating a much better candidate experience, that won’t raise these concerns or leave the candidate feeling like their application process is being thrown to the wolves.
To learn more about hiring assessments feel free to contact us, or download our e-book on questions you should ask yourself before implimenting a pre-hire assessment process.
Topics: Assessments and Simulations