Recruiters make four mistakes with psychometrics

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…that put the candidate experience and employer brand at risk.

Recruiters are jeopardising their employer brand by making four fundamental mistakes with psychometric tests in the selection process, according to Talent Q, the workplace assessment specialist.

Ability tests and personality questionnaires are widely used by organisations to sift and select job applicants, however Talent Q says they are being misused because:

* Recruiters don’t communicate sufficiently with candidates about why they are being asked to undertake the tests and how the resultant information is relevant to the job;
* They don’t offer feedback to candidates after they have conducted assessments, which is in breach of the requirements of the British Psychological Society;
* They don’t keep a centralised record of assessment data, which results in duplication and inefficiency that frustrates candidates;
* They don’t properly explain why candidates were ultimately unsuccessful in their application. Candidates often blame the assessments if they don’t get the job, when in fact it may have been other factors.

“By misusing psychometric tests, organisations are providing a bad experience to job applicants and this can irreparably damage their employer brand and their reputation,” said Steve O’Dell, CEO of Talent Q UK.

Talent Q claims that good practice with assessments is to be clear about what information you want from candidates; to proactively plan the process from their point of view; to use relevant assessments; to communicate clearly; to offer feedback to candidates throughout; to use – and share – the resultant information and to conduct a verification test at the interview stage.

“You want candidates to feel valued and engaged at all times, even if they will not be appointed,” said Steve O’Dell. “The real way to deliver a great candidate experience that enhances your employer brand is to treat your job applicants with the same care and consideration as you would treat your customers, because many of them will actually be your customers.”

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  1. I’d totally agree with Steve O’Dell. Perhaps the biggest mistake though is that recruiters often don’t actually understand the origin and appropriate application of these instruments. Their administrators are often taught the ‘rules’ of ensuring fairness in their completion, but they aren’t taught the background to the test and where it may, or may not, be appropriate to use it.

    I frequently come across people being given Myers Briggs and Belbin Team Roles instruments as a part of the recruitment process. Without a great deal of effort, it is hard to see how these are going to be applied effectively in a recruitment decision and the latter isn’t even a properly validated psychometric.

    Surely, it is only a matter of time before someone takes legal action because of the inappopriate application of one of these?

    Best wishes
    Graham |

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