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Personality Tests For Hiring – Just Who Am I Hiring ?

You’re quite pleased at landing your latest hire.

Day 1 for the latest hire. They’re 15 minutes late to work. No issues there. Walks in – good morning to everyone. Sits down at their desk. Starts asking other colleagues to do part of their work claiming they are unwell. An hour later they take a call in the middle of a team meeting and exit the room to yell at the other person. They say no to a work assignment claiming it is not part of their job scope and tell the boss that teamwork is lacking at work. Their day ends an hour before everyone else because they’re ‘trying to avoid traffic’.

Not an impressive start. Could these behavioural traits have been detected?

The answer is yes.

Chances are the latest hire did not undergo a personality test prior to joining. With regards to cultural fitment, Human Resources would use the personality test to assess the candidate. You don’t hire just for skills. Personality plays a large role. Digital interviews are here to stay and can be easily used in determining the right fit remotely.

Why the need for a personality test?

Employers seek out the right skills, experience, motivation and fitment with regards to attitude, general work style, and personality. You test a candidate’s personality as it plays a crucial role in answering questions around trainability, approach to work and motivation. Psychometric tests are the norm and are helpful towards determining just how matched the candidate would be to your company. Behavioral interview questions help you determine what kind of candidate would be hired.

What’s the connect between personality & employment?

On a global scale, employers worldwide use various forms of tools to decide if you possess motivation and enthusiasm being sought after. The most common personality tests include:

  1. Verbal reasoning – here candidate communication skills are tested. Test revolves around sentence completion, paraphrasing a passage and reading. It is used when employers want written reports and documents and to know if candidates can explain work-related issues clearly and simply to managers.
  2. Numerical reasoning – here the candidate’s ability to draw logical conclusions according to data from tables and graphs is tested.
  3. Abstract reasoning – measures candidate’s ability to think laterally. Method used in solving the problem is important.
  4. Logical reasoning – this tests the candidate’s ability in working flexibly using unfamiliar information.
  5. Cognitive ability test – tests candidate’s learned reasoning abilities.


‘Are they a good fit?’

Globally, most companies understand the importance of hiring for personality as well as skills. There exist plenty of tests such as:

  1. Hogan assessments – these capture key behavioural tendencies based around 11 personality scales.
  2. DISC personality test – Dominance, Influences, Steadiness and Compliance test shows the employers everyday behavior towards others and the things you do.
  3. 16 personality test – candidate is categorized under specific traits helping describe how belonging to specific types behave.
  4. Behavioral insights test – based on the Big Five theory each personality type corresponds to a skill their job needs. Based on responses, the test reveals candidate like ability.

Pre-employment personality test

What’s in a pre-employment test? Candidate profile analysis takes place on multiple levels. It could be for selection or leadership. It might also be for personal candidate development or testing strengths, weaknesses and trainability. This helps candidates set personality goals in nailing the next job.

Popular personality test questions

Various free personality tests exist helping candidates prepare for the test. Here’s what a few vendors need:

  1. Institute of Psychometric Coaching – A 5 point scale asking candidates to select options from strongly agree to strongly disagree.
  2. 16personalities.com – similar questions asked based on 7 point scale with no right or wrong.

Pick a vendor such as iRecruter.com. They bring to the table over a decade of candidate assessment and provide cost-effective SaaS based recruitment tools that help you improve productivity, success and coherence amongst your teams.

Adarsh HM
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