4 min read

Skill Assessment to Hire the Best Talent

Team Glider

Updated on February 20, 2024

Did you know that 37% of job hunters have admitted to lying on their CVs? This is why it’s important to look beyond what’s written on a resume and instead use skill assessment tools to validate a candidate’s real-world abilities and fit for the role.

How can I assess a candidate’s technical skills effectively?

There’s no single “best” method for assessing candidates. The right types of skill assessment to use will depend on the specific role, company culture, and available resources. Here are some general guidelines:

Technical Skill Validation

Are you hiring for a technical position, such as a software developer or data scientist? Here are some talent assessment tips to keep in mind:

Technical proficiency

  • Provide coding challenges relevant to the role and evaluate code quality, problem-solving, and efficiency.
  • Assess specific technical knowledge through multiple-choice or open-ended questions.
  • Observe candidates writing code in real time and ask them to explain their thought process as they do this.
  • Bring in experienced engineers who can ask in-depth questions and evaluate the candidate’s technical understanding.

💡 AI can be a great help in automating some aspects of technical skill validation. For example, Glider can assess problem-solving skills through empirical tests in different programming languages, operating systems, and other technical environments.

Certifications

While not always a guarantee of skill, relevant certifications indicate a baseline level of knowledge and commitment to a field. 

Look for designations such as AWS Certified Solutions Architect for cloud computing roles or Certified Information Systems Security Professional (CISSP) for cybersecurity positions, and verify if candidates have kept them up to date.

Work samples

When applicable, assess the quality and complexity of projects the candidate has worked on before. Pay close attention to specific skills they utilized, and discuss the challenges they faced and overcame in those projects.

Non-Technical/Functional Expertise Skill Validation

Are you hiring for a non-technical position, such as a project manager or a marketing specialist? Try these talent assessment strategies: 

Soft skills

  • Ask questions about past situations to assess the candidate’s communication, teamwork, problem-solving, and adaptability. For example, you can ask them to describe a time when they had to navigate a difficult conversation with a colleague.
  • Present hypothetical scenarios and evaluate the candidate’s decision-making and approach to challenges. Did they choose to confront the issue directly or seek a compromise?
  • Use validated tools such as the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator, the Big Five Personality Test, and the DiSC Assessment to identify personality traits relevant to the role and company culture.
  • Observe how candidates interact and collaborate with others in a team setting. You can set up a problem-solving task that requires collective brainstorming, for example.

💡 Glider AI supports cognitive, interest-based, and situational assessments to make it easier to measure soft skills and evaluate candidates holistically. 

Domain knowledge

  • Assess the applicant’s understanding of relevant concepts, trends, and regulations. If you’re hiring for a marketing specialist role, ask about the latest digital marketing trends and effective social media strategies.
  • Analyze the candidate’s responses to industry-related scenarios. How would they increase market share for a certain product in a saturated market?
  • Evaluate the depth and breadth of relevant experience in the job description. Discuss specific projects listed on the candidate’s resume and the impact they had.

Cultural Fit

  • If possible, allow candidates to interact with current employees and gain insights into the work environment.
  • Focus on values and past experiences that demonstrate compatibility with the company culture. Ask questions such as: 
  • What motivates you to come to work every day?
  • Can you share an example of how you contributed to a positive team environment in the past?
  • What strategies do you use to handle work-related stress?

Candidate Integrity

Background checks

Verify any information provided by the applicant, including employment history and education. Check for any criminal records or legal disputes that could affect their suitability for the role.

Reference checks

Contact the references the applicant provided (with their written consent) to verify information and gain insights into their work ethic and performance. 

Behavioral assessment

Analyze responses to situational judgment tests and behavioral interview questions to identify potential concerns. Read our behavioral assessment blog for a deeper and detailed understanding.

💡 AI technology can automate and streamline data gathering for background and reference checks, as well as analyze responses to integrity-focused questions. Book a demo with Glider AI to see this in action!

Additional Considerations

Personality and psychometric assessments

Use validated tools to gain insights into personality traits, cognitive abilities, and potential for success in the role.

💡 Glider AI supports psychometric assessments

Simulated work scenarios

Develop realistic simulations that mimic real-life job situations and assess candidates’ performance under pressure. In a software development role, you can use Glider to test candidates with coding simulations and other technical challenges. 

Panel interviews 

Bring in different interviewers to gain multiple perspectives. Aside from HR personnel, include a mix of team members from the specific department and potential cross-department collaborators.

Feedback and continuous improvement 

Gather feedback from all stakeholders involved in the assessment process, and then use this feedback to refine your methodology for future hires. This helps keep your recruitment process effective and aligned with organizational goals.

Conclusion

Accurate skill assessment is crucial for building a successful team. With a comprehensive skill assessment strategy that incorporates AI tools for better efficiency and accuracy, you can confidently select the best talent to drive your company’s success. 

FAQs

What are the benefits of skill assessment tools (particularly AI-based tools)?

AI-based skill assessment tools save time and offer objectivity by reducing bias, standardizing assessments, and providing precise skill evaluation. 

How should I approach reference checks for prospective employees?

Always secure the candidate’s written consent. Focus your inquiries on job-relevant skills and behaviors (no discriminatory questions) and be mindful of legal boundaries.

What is the significance of skill assessment in the hiring process?

Skill assessments can predict job performance. It also enhances hiring accuracy by diminishing bias, streamlining recruitment, offering insights for development, and improving the overall candidate experience.

Why is cultural fit important, and how can it be assessed during hiring?

Assessing cultural fit decreases turnover, enhances teamwork, fosters innovation, and strengthens the company’s brand by ensuring employees share the organization’s values and work well together.

What are the benefits of incorporating simulated work scenarios in the assessment process?

Simulated work scenarios provide a realistic evaluation of a candidate’s real-world abilities. They test critical and analytical skills, measure essential soft skills, predict how well a candidate fits the job, and standardize the evaluation process for fairness.

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