Employment Screening Assessments
Employment-screening tests must be a valid, reliable, job-related, predictor of an employee's success. If candidates are screened, standardized tests are used that comply with employee rights laws and the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission's (EEOC) Uniform Guidelines on Employee Selection Procedures.
Non-discriminatory, standardized tests can go a long way toward helping HR professionals identify qualified, and even superior, job candidates.
Five kinds of tests in particular are useful in assessing candidates' potential:
- Aptitude tests - Aptitude tests measure an individual's ability to learn, or suitability for, a new skill. They measure a candidate's ability to apply skills in a number of areas from typing and listening, to reasoning and mathematics. They do not, however, necessarily measure an individual's existing knowledge. Aptitude tests may be the most common type of assessment test given to potential employees.
- Cognitive ability tests - Cognitive ability tests measure a candidate's existing skill in analyzing, solving problems, and drawing conclusions. For example, someone applying for an editor position might be asked to take an editing test. Another person, who is applying for a computer programming job, might be asked to write a program that will enable a computer to perform a particular function.
- Integrity tests - Integrity tests, also know as honesty tests, evaluate a candidate's honesty by assessing their attitudes toward generally negative work behaviors, such as laziness, theft, and drug abuse. Usually, integrity tests ask the individual what they would do in a given situation; for example, would the candidate ever consider slightly padding their hours?
According to the EEOC, integrity tests are not discriminatory as long as they are administered equally to all candidates.
- Personality tests - Personality tests attempt to measure how well a candidate might mesh with a particular position or organization by assessing the individual's behavior patterns and social skills. If, for example, a candidate displays a particular behavior that has been found by the company to be a key trait of successful managers, that candidate may be considered for the job. Some of the traits that are assessed in personality tests are as follows:
- Extraversion — refers to the extent to which someone is outgoing.
- Stability — refers to how poised a person is under pressure.
- Independence — refers to the ability of an individual to act on her own.
- Conscientiousness — refers to how concerned a person is with the quality of his work.
While personality tests do not measure a candidate's knowledge or ability to learn, such tests are still considered important, especially when a position calls for a high degree of teamwork or social grace.
- Physical assessment tests - Physical assessment tests determine how well a candidate will be able to handle the physical demands of a job. Such tests usually mimic tasks that must be performed on that job, and the candidate must typically complete the task within a specific time period.
Taken together, these five kinds of non-discriminatory, standardized tests discussed should steer almost any HR team toward the employee it seeks.
While pre-employment screening is an excellent way for HR departments to predict a candidate's success, care must be taken to ensure the test conforms with employment law.
Downloadable Templates and Topic Briefs
To launch the following templates and topic briefs, click on the title.
Questions to Aid the Selection Decision
Affirmative Action and Hiring Practices
Consent to Conduct Background Check
Determining Adverse Impact
Developing an Internal Promotion Policy
Employee Selection and Layoff Legislation
Where Do I Go for Training on This Topic?
Manpower’s Training and Development Center (TDC) is an on-the-job performance support tool that brings training opportunities to the Internet. That's nearly 4,000 world-class e-learning courses and 5,000 hours of e-learning in end-user applications – available at any time. We are constantly updating and adding courses to keep offerings usable and current with changing technology, knowledge, and skill requirements.
Coursework areas address professional development skills, compliance, business skills, end-user software applications, human resource topics, contact center, information technology, and telecommunications, to name just a few.
The following are recommended training courses for learning assessment and selection techniques:
How Can I Earn Re-certification Credits?
As a pre-approved provider of continuing education credits, Manpower can help you maintain your Professional HR status. Each hourly event counts towards 1 hour of credit for PHR, SPHR, and GPHR members. To learn more about the continuing education program, click here.
This series of complimentary, informative webinars will focus on a range of HR-related topics - from candidate screening and assessment to employee training and retention. Each presentation is designed to address the needs of companies of all sizes, and each speaker is a proven and accomplished expert in his/her field.
Topics currently in our archives that relate to assessment and selection are:
- Improve Your Hiring Process Using Assessment Testing
- Improve Your Bottom Line with Targeted Pre-Employment Assessments
- Principals of Background Checks
Assessments are a powerful part of the Manpower organization. They are a core part of our business strategy. Our Manpower and Manpower Professional offices use assessments to evaluate the skills, knowledge, abilities and personal characteristics of hundreds of individuals each day.
These tools have repeatedly been proven to identify exceptional individuals for our client positions.
This site offers over 400 different assessment tools. We're confident that regardless of the industry you are in, the function you provide, or the position you are trying to fill, there is an assessment that will enhance your own hiring success.
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