Personality questionnaires, logic tests, evaluation of intelligence quotient, multiple choice questions (MCQ) of general knowledge, the psychometric test comes in different forms, all with the aim of providing greater insight and/or evaluating the aptitudes of candidates. Thus, at a time when soft skills prevail, more and more companies are asking their candidates to carry out tests during the recruitment process, and also their employees. But how should organisations use these tests? What are the advantages? Here are some good reasons to integrate them into your HR processes.
Defining Psychometric Testing
Used for professional selection and orientation, the psychometric test is used to measure an individual's logical, verbal and numerical skills, as well as personality, motivations and professional behaviour.
In occupational psychology, the aptitude test sits alongside personality tests, intelligence tests and situational tests or projective tests. Among the different types of tests, we publish the personality inventory (SOSIE), intellectual aptitude tests (DATTM Next Generation, Watson GlaserTM-lll), the motivations and professional interests (Which Career For Me), all of which can be enhanced by an online tool that enables recruiters to make informed decisions about their pool of candidates for any given position (Role Assessment).
What Situations Are Psychometric Tests Used In?
Psychometric tests are used in various situations of personal and professional life, in particular for a skills assessment or as part of a recruitment process.
For career guidance: Career Counsellors in guidance centres and skills assessment centres commonly use psychometric tests to support their clients in their professional development. Doing a personality test, or evaluating an individuals motivations and professional interests, makes it possible to identify the main elements of an individual's profile and inform the types of roles that may appeal or be suitable for them. For example, tests can highlight their interests, values, predispositions for manual or intellectual trades, creative or analytical temperament, as well as their ability to work alone or in a team, etc.
For certain competitive roles: A number of professions use psychometric tests as part of their pre-employment assessment process. The Watson Glaser-lll for example is most commonly used as a screening tool for recruitment in the legal sector, whilst the NHS employs the use of a number of psychometric assessments to sift and select candidates. Many sites offer free psychometric practice tests in order to help candidates prepare and train for the skills required.
For access to certain professions: The application process for specific professionals such as training to become a train driver or pilot also sees candidates required to undertake technical tests and targeted psychological assessments. Aptitude tests measure in particular the ability to concentrate, resistance to stress and even cognitive abilities. For example, Air France’s selection process, one of the most demanding, includes difficult psychological tests, with a series of logical consequences, as well as group and individual interviews, all over two days!
The Advantages of Psychometric Assessments
Psychometric tests make it possible to evaluate an individual, based on an objective statistical approach. As part of its scientific validation, the psychometric assessment must be calibrated to situate a person in relation to a representative sample of the population, with criteria such as age, gender, level of study etc.
The effectiveness of these tools is guaranteed by three criteria: reliability (similar results and scores if the test is taken several times by the same person), validity (the usefulness and specific performance of the test), and sensitivity (the discriminating power that distinguishes individuals from each other). It is strongly recommended to complete the tests with a feedback interview, conducted by a psychologist or a person trained in the tools.
Improved Candidate Experience
Completing tests allows a candidate to check that their profile is suitable for the position offered and that they do not waste their time applying for it. Taking a personality test allows them to identify or confirm their character traits. Similarly, candidates can test their know-how and appetite for a position, with a practical simulation test. Passing tests therefore allows you to get to know yourself better, to identify both your strengths and your points of vigilance, and to assess your ability for which you are applying. From the employer’s perspective, by collecting complete information on the candidate, the employer can best support them in the onboarding phase, a crucial period for retaining talent.
Secure & Objective Decision-Making
For certain technical positions or management functions, candidates must pass a battery of tests before the job interview. These tools indeed help to objectify recruitment, thanks to the concrete and reliable information they deliver, which is not always communicated via a CV and cover letter. In addition, they make it possible to avoid cognitive biases and discrimination, even unconscious.
In order simplify the recruitment process, it is possible to give a test only to applicants on the short list, for example to decide between two applicants of the same level. The SOSIE, for example, provides the recruiter with details of the personality traits of the prospective candidate and their values. In fact, the results of a test, scientifically proven, support the recruiter in his decision-making, whatever the outcome. However, to evaluate the candidates in an optimal way, it is recommended to cross all sources of information (CV, letter, tests, recruitment interview).
Greater Candidate Insights
Completing assessments allows the recruiter to ensure the suitability of a candidate to occupy a specific position; by verifying that his profile meets the expectations of the role, both in terms of know-how (hard skills) and behavioural skills (soft skills). Among the tests used by companies is the Watson-Glaser™ III , which assesses the critical thinking ability of candidates called upon to manage and make decisions. Salespeople can also be tested in a targeted manner on their behaviour in a professional situation (relationship with the customer, conflict management, etc.).
In addition, psychometric tools can help to predict candidate success, helping to reduce turnover and the costs associated with recruitment errors. As a recruiter, you can assess the candidate's ability to perform in the role and, in part, their professional development. How will this person fit into the existing team? How are they likely to evolve in the company? Are they capable of innovating? Knowing a candidate's potential also helps shape and inform HR teams long-term strategic skills management.
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