How Assessments Help You Hire High Performers
Often I have discussions regarding the use of assessments in the hiring and selection process. And during my discussions I run into third camps of thought.
Two camps are dangerous or less than reliable while the third camp of thought is the most effective and desirable for the good of an enterprise. In my opinion, the first two camps of thought usually lead to high turnover or compliance issues.
So, let’s review the three camps of thought regarding the use of assessments…
- Do Not Use Assessments
These are the people who believe they have extraordinary abilities to uncover talent using the resume process. These are the same people who believe in credentials over interviews and performance history. These people place little emphasis upon having objective data about the actual traits a candidate possesses – and usually are the first to complain when the individual hired performs below expectations. And, there are “hire-a-friend-of-a-friend” today group and there is little effort to determine if the “friend” matches the needs of the job position. The last of this group is very poor manager who believes anyone can do the job and hires the first candidate to apply. This is a true sign of two things – a poor hire or selection and a really lazy manager.
- Only Use Assessments
This group takes the assessment process to the extreme – using it as the final choice tool. In other words, if a person does not match a predetermined pattern or results from an assessment they are not considered for a position. This is a dangerous thing to do, especially if you do not have a clear position related benchmark of traits necessary for the job. Without a job benchmark, a manager is acting purely upon their personal preference of traits necessary to fill a position. The key here is the assessment is used as the end all – ultimate decision maker for the hiring process with no other factors considered. This practice can lead to problems when over used as a hiring system.
- A Balanced and Complete Use of Assessments
Here is the right or proper way to use assessment tools in the hiring and selection process. First, a job benchmark is completed to show the traits necessary for the job to be successful. The traits found during the benchmarking process are qualified and prioritized to show the importance of certain traits over other traits. This is an important piece of the process due to the goal of matching talent with jobs or positions. Next the candidates take an assessment which classifies the results using the same elements or factors as the job benchmark. Then the candidates – the talent – is compared to the job benchmark. The higher the match the better the candidate relative to job performance and longevity in the position (reduced turnover). Then the top candidates are subjected to an extensive interview process. (Our system actually provides a list of behavioral based questions to ask the final candidates to insure they have demonstrated high performance tendencies in their former jobs.)
The key factor in using this process is it is balanced. The assessment results are used primarily as a screening device to offer the highest matches between the job and the talent. Then the interview process begins with multiple interviews using multiple interviewers and a predetermined scoring system for each interviewer to use after interviewing each candidate. Remember, the assessment tool should only count for a maximum of one-third of the hiring process. Yet, it does supply you with objective data regarding your candidate.
In this day and age, individuals are highly coached and practiced in the art of job interviewing. To often, we find managers who have been “tricked” by candidates who knew the best answers to use during the interview process and actually appear to be more talented than they actually possessed. This “bad” hires lead to unhappy managers who get stuck with under performing workers due to poor or biased hiring processes.
The key is to have a proven system to use in this all important process. The better your talent levels, the stronger your business unit will perform. Obviously, when the entire organization is using this system, the more likely you will have a high performance culture with the positive results and outcomes on a daily basis.
If you are unsure of your current hiring and selection process, after consulting with your human resource group, please contact me to discuss how to upgrade your hiring and selection process. Our phone number is 901-757-4434. Or, email me directly at voss-at-inneractiveconsulting-dot-com. (Sorry about the unusual address, truth is I only have time for real people and no spamming robots. Thanks for understanding. Voss)
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Tags: finding personal traits necessary for the job, hiring selection process, successful hiring practices, using assesments in the hiring and selection process, using the interview process, Voss W Graham