Most HRs consider psychometric tests an indispensable part of talent assessment tools. Why so? Well, the driving factor of any company is its employees. Employees make a company prosper; not the machines, not the technology but people. A company’s success depends on the people working there and thus the powerhouse behind the company must be sound and effective in every manner.
As a part of talent assessment tools, psychometric tests in recruitment help evaluate talent from an aptitude as well as personality perspective, thereby assessing their ability to learn new skills, fit in the company culture and work in tandem with the rest of the organization to meet business objectives. No wonder, start-ups and big companies love psychometric tests more than ever.
What are Psychometric Tests?
There are at least 5 reasons to use psychometric tests in recruitment. They evaluate an individual’s intellectual prowess, mental stability, personality traits, soft skills, etc. Psychometric tests in recruitment assess every particular skill that a candidate possesses through a plethora of questions. That’s why talent assessment tools are objective and unbiased tests that are fully valid and reliable.
In today’s world, psychometric tests have become common as recruiters from various companies hire their candidates through these tests. These tests are performed during the initial interview phase to get a clear sense of the candidate’s status based on the job role.
“I believe that psychometric tests should be used in conjunction with one or more interviews for the job, with different people, and where possible, meeting other members of the organization. This would allow the candidate to pick up information that is hard to measure, such as the general atmosphere, how people relate to each other, and whether the candidate would ‘fit in’.”Siobhan Hamilton-Phillips
How did Psychometric Tests become a part of Talent Assessment Tools?
If we dig deeper into the history of psychometric tests, then, according to reports, it was the year 1880 when James Catrell pioneered the first psychometric assessment. He labeled them as ‘mental tests‘. After Catrell, in 1905, Alfred Binet introduced the term ‘intelligent tests‘. In 1917, Robert Woodworth developed the ‘Personal Data Sheet’ consisting of simple yes and no questions to assess WW1 recruits. This answered the question, what tests can assess a candidate’s personality?
Science of Psychometric Tests
According to Sir Francis Galton, psychometrics is “The art of imposing measurement and number upon operations of the mind”.
Psychometric tests help in asserting the candidate’s adaptive dexterity necessary for the workplace environment.
A person’s neuroticism levels can be examined through conditional stimuli where different situations evaluate the different traits of the person.
Psychometric tests expose the candidate’s mental and behavioral status through assorted stimuli.
Importance of Psychometric Tests in Recruitment
The answer is here: Earlier, recruiters used to select candidates based on their CVs and name-sake interviews for volume hiring. A candidate’s personality evaluation was not given much importance. But through research, it was found that the job performance of an individual depended not only on the intellectual capability but a major part of it depended on the mental status and the personality of the individual. The more diverse hiring, the company implemented, the more successful it became. Thus, psychometric tests became a part of the talent assessment tools.
These tests evaluate the three main characteristics of humans.
- Cognitive Abilities: These tests evaluate the logical and analytical capabilities of the candidates and help measure brain functions such as memory, reasoning, comprehension, speed, visualization, problem-solving skills, etc.
- Personality Traits: Psychometric tests help in identifying and categorizing the positive personality traits such as diligence, openness, stress management, etc., and negative personality traits such as self-obsession, anger, impulsiveness, etc., of candidates that will influence the job performance and the peer relationship. These tests funnel out the deepest traits of the candidates, helping the recruiters select the fittest one.
- Motivation and Values: Talent assessment tools like these give a complete analysis of the candidates. The final results help the recruiters identify the motivating factors for the candidates and the values that matter the most to them.
These tests have proven their worth over time. These tests have, according to experts, the ‘psychometric properties.
- Reliability: A test is said to be reliable when the results are promising. If a test provides the desired results, then only it can be considered as reliable. The consistency of the results based on the trials affects the reliability of the tests. Different types of reliability are-
A.Test-retest Reliability: When the same test is given to the same individual over and over to acquire the similar results.
B.Interrelated Reliability: When the same test is given to different people to acquire similar results.
C.Internal Consistency Reliability: When different tests are given to the same person to acquire similar results.
- Validity: A test is considered valid if it does what it is supposed to do. Validity is of various types namely-
A.Construct Validity: When a test measures exactly what it is intended to measure.
B.Criterion Validity: When the test provides results that correlate to real-life performance.
Face Validity: When the test appears to measure what it is intended to measure.
- Norming: Norming means the comparison of an individual’s results to the results of others with the same characteristics as that individual.
Recruitment software platforms like Glider AI are one-stop solutions for testing a candidate from more than one perspective. They help recruiters understand that a candidate’s personality like empathy, moral values, culture, etc tells more than what is in the resume. Moreover, psychometric tests are a great way for DE&I hiring. In this regard, talent assessment tools highlight the importance of those traits.