In recent years the number of organizations using psychometric testing has increased and is now a common tool in the recruitment process. There are several reasons for their increase in popularity, from the increased scrutiny around an organization’s recruitment process, the decreasing cost of testing and the variety of tests now available. This form of testing is not the domain of senior leaders, firms are utilizing these tools when recruiting throughout their organization.
For candidates who undertake these tests for the first time there can be some hesitation, it is important to note that there is no right or wrong answer and you cannot fail the tests and they are only part of the decision making process.
Psychometric tests generally fall into two categories:
• Aptitude or ability tests. These tests aim to assess your ability to undertake specific job related skills and to predict subsequent job performance. The most commonly used tests assess verbal and numerical reasoning skills. When a role requires technical or specialist skills, employers may require candidates to undertake testing specific to the particular role. The results are then measured against those of similar seniority and experience to make a comparable assessment of a candidate’s ability.
• Personality test. These tests are used to see how a candidate would fit a particular work environment and they are used to assess aspects of a candidate’s behavior. These tests can assess your ability to manage stress and adapt to change through to your motivations, interests and values. The results are then compared to the characteristics considered essential for the role. When undertaking these tests it helps to be as truthful as you can and not spent too much time over-analyzing the questions.
As these tests are an important part of the recruitment process it is important that candidates treat them as such, we suggest before you complete any psychometric testing that you prepare yourself by:
• Making sure you have a good sleep the night before and take the tests and allow yourself plenty of time without distractions.
• You can prepare by studying some sample questions and familiarizing yourself with the tests you are about to undertake.
• Practice doing some tasks within a certain timeframe so you are used to working against the clock.
• For tests that assess specific skills, for example numeric tests, try refreshing yourself with the material.
• Most importantly read the instructions and seek feedback from the tests, regardless if you are the successful candidate or not. .