Pre-Employment Testing: Why Your Company Should Use Them

Wondering if your company should be utilizing pre-employment testing? Yes, you should and here is why.

Hiring the right employees is essential for growing your business. But selecting the right people can be difficult.

Have you hired an employee in the past, then realized that he or she wasn’t a good fit? If so, you’re not alone. With many businesses receiving as many as 250 resumes per open position, it’s easy to sometimes hire the wrong person and overlook the right one.

Unfortunately hiring mistakes cost you a lot of time and money. So how can they be avoided? Pre-employment testing is one way you can do it.

Why is pre-employment testing effective? Keep reading to find out.

Nurture Your Company Culture

The culture of your company is a big part of its identity. It’s a powerful force that drives your employees’ actions and influences their attitudes. It impacts your ability to recruit, retain, and even grow your bottom line. Hiring for culture fit is an essential ingredient in the talent management recipe.

Here’s one example. If your culture is based on teamwork, you don’t want to hire an employee that commands to be get top billing and perform alone on center stage. He or she shouldn’t be high maintenance either. Of course, they can be competitive and lead. But you don’t want mavericks and loners who put self over the good of the team. That person wouldn’t fit into the culture. Productivity and engagement would suffer.

Pre-employment testing helps hire for culture fit as well as personality job fit.  Assessments are designed to determine personality traits and attitude such as integrity, go-getter attitude, achievement drive, team work, responsibility, reliability, and helping disposition. Unpacking these characteristics before a person hits the production floor or corporate office will help you choose people who’ll contribute to and engage with your awesome culture.

Are you looking to nurture and improve your company culture? Then pre-employment testing can help you do that.

Learn Their True Skills

Job candidates love to talk about their skills. But those are just words. It’s probably difficult to remember the last time a candidate told you he wasn’t the best at what he did.  Why would he?  He’s applying for a job and wants to impress you.

Not surprising, a recent report revealed 85 percent of employers caught applicants fibbing on their resumes or applications, up from just 66 percent just a few years ago.

That’s where pre-employment testing comes into play. An assessment test can help “pop the hood” on a candidate’s ability, attitude, or job fit before you ever decide to hire him.

Let’s say for example that the job required the ability to do advanced math or prepare presentations for a executive audience.  How proficient are the candidate’s math or Powerpoint skills. Just because they received an A in the classroom or can produce a certificate of completion doesn’t mean they can translate those classroom skills to your business.  

Skill testing are perfect solutions for situations like these. When you know your candidates skills to the test beforehand, you’re much more likely to hire the right people.

Put Their Critical Thinking to the Test

Our world is changing fast. Jobs are changing. Demands are increasing. The pace of work is accelerating. To succeed at almost any job today requires some level of critical thinking.  A pre-employment test designed to test critical thinking skills is the way to go. A good critical thinking test can assess a candidate for both the quality of their decision making and how quickly they can make good decisions.

Testing for critical thinking may include standard items like reasoning ability, logical reasoning, verbal reasoning or attention to detail and focus. Critical thinking is becoming an essential skill for most jobs and a pre-employment test is a great way to discover if your candidate has what it takes.

What’s the best critical thinking test? Simply find a high-quality pre-employment testing company and ask them to help select one or more from their library of validated tests or let them create a custom test for you.

Pre-Employment Testing is the Way to Go

No matter how you look at it, there are some things about a candidate’s behavior or skills that you just can’t assess from a piece of paper and an interview. The resume is just a candidate’s attempt to make a good impression. It is 100% historical. It is often filled with more fiction than fact. At best, it’s a self reported narrative of past work. They reveal little about the individual’s character and can be tainted with selective memory.  What you need to know is if the candidate can repeat his or her past success or grow into new roles.That’s why pre-employment testing is being used by so many companies today.

Testing helps screen out high risk applicants quickly when you receive hundreds of resumes and guides you toward the best decision after you narrow down the talent pool to the final candidate or two.  Pre-employment testing can act as your insurance policy too.  Even when the candidate doesn’t meet all your expectations, you’ll at least know what you’re getting up front and deal with the potential performance challenges before they impact productivity.

Pre-employment testing is getting smarter too. Artificial intelligence is taking its accuracy and validity into unimaginable new territory.  Check out this article and podcast on how artificial intelligence is starting to disrupt recruitment and employee selection.

Test Their Industry Knowledge

Some jobs require specific skills, industry knowledge, or evidence of proficiency to do the job. If so, it’s just one more reason to consider using a pre-employment test. From retail to property management, engineering, healthcare, and hospitality, pre-employment tests are available to fit your industry and company needs.

For example, engineers require mechanical aptitude. A Mechanical Aptitude Test is a reliable and objective assessment of a candidate’s ability.  You can test for such things as measurement and math, spatial reasoning, electrical concepts, assembly, and effects of moving objects. For a restaurant manager, you can test for his ability to recruit employees, motivate his team, or manage multiple locations. Understanding HIPPA and medical terminology is essential for nurses and CNAs.  Pre-employments can easily test their proficiency and identify gaps for training too.

While extensive industry knowledge may not always be essential for each job, industry-specific and job-specific employment testing can help weed out high risk or low performing applicants quickly.

Get to Know Their Computer Skills

Do your employees spend a lot of time on computers? Then keyboarding and typing skills and even computer basics are necessary.

Testing before you hire will help you make the right hiring decision or identify skill gaps quickly. You’ll be able to identity the new hires that can hit the ground running and those that might need a crash course on data entry, Word, or Excel.

Test Their Communication Skills

Communication skills are required in almost every job, no matter the industry. Whether you work from home and only communicate by email or go to a physical workplace every day and work face-to-face, you communicate with other people.

Unfortunately, a resume isn’t a great way to assess communication abilities. Sure, it might be clear and concise, but the resume is often the results of multiple drafts and rewrites and could have been written by a professional. It’s certainly not extemporaneous and often not very accurate.

The interview process is an improvement over the resumes but candidates are now coached and prepared interviews too.  Besides, many hiring managers aren’t very good at recognizing the b.s. or staying on focus.

To make sure you’re hiring great communicators, add a test to your hiring process. Find out how your candidates communicate through text, voice calls, video chats, and emails. Employ whatever methods they’ll encounter in real-life situations on the job and see how they do.