Personality Testing for Employment: The Guideline for an Applicant

Personality Testing for Employment: The Guideline for an Applicant

When the study is over, yesterday's student is in front of the closed doors of the university with a diploma in his hands. Now he has to face the cruel world of employment. The CV itself, especially if the graph of practical experience is empty, or limited to internship, is not enough for an employer. But there is always a chance to find a cushy job. Moreover, for most employers, the fundamental factor is not grandiose work experience, but personal qualities that will make an effective cell of the workflow from a subordinate.

At this stage, HR is faced with the problem of the correct choice of an employee. A short interview is not enough, so pre-employment testing comes to the aid of one and the other side. They will help the employer to find the most promising employee among the crowd of applicants. And for a student without work experience - this is a chance to be noticed.

Main Goals of Personality Test for Jobs

Understanding the purpose of personality testing for employment is the key to its success. Many large companies have the goal of checking the leadership qualities of a candidate, his dedication, desire for career growth, ability to make decisions and responsibility in difficult situations. Sometimes the goal of testing is completely opposite - to choose an executive officer who knows how to work well in a team and who does not claim leadership positions.

The practical goals of testing candidates are:
  1. an objective assessment that does not depend on the mood and sympathies of the personnel manager
  2. selecting a candidate with the most appropriate personal characteristics from among
  3. several applicants with formally equal personal data
  4. selection of employees, the most suitable for work in this team
  5. eliminating false-positive candidates, work with which in any case will end in their
  6. quick dismissal
  7. pre-screening clearly unsuitable applicants among a large number of candidates
The number of testing objectives is not limited and is determined by each employer separately. It all depends on the company. Therefore, the number of tests is increasing every year. Many applicants spend days on the Internet to learn how to perform tests effectively, but not everything is so simple. Each testing method has its own pitfalls and trick questions. Practically every such personality test for jobs determines whether a person is inclined to idealize and cheat. Sometimes it is this graph that determines whether you are on the black or white list of candidates. Therefore, let’s find out what are the most popular work personality tests in order not to be confused during an interview.

The Caliper Profile Test

This assessment system has been used for 50 years and allows HR to determine the presence of certain personal qualities (for example, perseverance or accuracy) that are necessary for this work. The Caliper profile test is designed to identify a combination of qualities that help find out how well a person understands other people, assesses his flexibility and ability to build connections. This method is used when hiring employees who will be responsible for servicing customers or implementing changes in the company.
The form of the questions is as follows. The candidate is asked to choose the statement that best reflects his point of view, and marks the corresponding item in the questionnaire. Among the remaining options, the candidate chooses an assertion that reflects his point of view the worst.

For example:
  1. Sometimes it is better to lose than to offend anyone.
  2. I know the art of small talk well.
  3. We must always follow accepted standards and protocols.
  4. During the working day, I sometimes lose control of the situation.
From a practical point of view, this test reflects the basics of a candidate’s motivation and working approach but says little about his personal qualities.

The SHL Occupational Personality Questionnaire

With the help of SHL tests, one can estimate the level of development of abilities of various types. These can be:
  1. abilities for abstract thinking
  2. processing numerical and verbal information
  3. system thinking
For example, it is very important for managers at any level to be able to evaluate graph data, especially since they are confronted daily with information of this kind. Classic SHL tests are usually performed in a limited time mode. The analysis of the information obtained as a result of passing the tests helps companies select suitable specialists for positions, which contributes to the future efficiency of employees and company profits.

Most organizations use a combination of tests. For example, a combination of the verbal and numerical test shows in a complex the ability to process information, which is the basis of learning.

In each case, the candidate must perform the test of the desired level. For example, a “verbal” test can be aimed at different complexity of tasks: from understanding a text to processing it and interpreting it. For some tasks, it is enough to understand the written instructions, and for some, it is required to draw conclusions from the text and build logical connections.

Myers-Briggs Type Indicator

The Myers – Briggs diagnostic system has found widespread use in business, in the largest Western companies. In the United States, up to 70% of high school graduates go through the definition of personality type using the MBTI to select their future profession. Every year more than 2 million people fill out the MBTI questionnaire. The Myers-Briggs Type Indicator questionnaire is translated into 30 languages and is used worldwide.

The main application areas of this test are:
  1. self-knowledge and personal growth
  2. career growth and vocational guidance
  3. development of organizations
  4. management and leadership training
  5. problem-solving
  6. family counseling
  7. education and curriculum development
  8. scientific work
  9. interpersonal interaction training.
However, the scientific basis of the Myers-Briggs typology may be in doubt. Some of these doubts are related to the lack of skills and training in the field of psychometrics. Another part of doubts is connected with the very idea of a typological approach in psychology on the basis of which this type a personality test is made. Thus, the typological approach assumes the presence of bright "types", i.e. the bimodal distribution of answers on a dichotomous scale. Issuing results in a binary format (thinking-feeling, extraversion-introversion, etc.) entails, on the one hand, a noticeable loss of information, on the other - leads to measurement errors.

The DiSC Behavior Inventory

The method of diagnosing the type of behavioral activity is designed to identify the types of human behavior, the level of its overall activity, and, following from this, personality traits. This test questionnaire is used to diagnose strategies of behavioral activity in stressful conditions, as well as the socio-psychological diagnosis of personality development.

Hogan Personality Inventory

Hogan personality inventory is a psychological test designed for the most accurate and high-quality assessment of an individual in a business environment. The HOGAN assessment is an online, independent test of core business competencies. The tests include about 600 questions. Testing is carried out at a computer, and the results are processed on a confidential HOGAN server in the United States, which eliminates the possibility of hacking the program and guarantees a high professional level of the report. Testing duration is approximately 15-20 minutes per questionnaire.

Hogan questionnaires are divided into 3 types:
  1. HPI is a personal questionnaire, aimed at assessing human behavior in normal situations. The following data is assessed in this questionnaire: adaptation, ambitiousness, sociability, interpersonal sensitivity, organization, curiosity, approach to learning.
  2. HDS is an analysis of development zones, aimed at assessing human behavior in stressful situations. The following data is evaluated: enthusiasm, skepticism, caution, arrogance, color, creativity, diligence.
  3. MVPI is a motivational questionnaire that aims to assess the motives, values, and preferences of the person. The following features are evaluated: recognition, power, thirst for pleasure, altruism, involvement, tradition, security, commerce, aesthetics, science.
Testing can take place on one or all of the above questionnaires, depending on the tasks. Testing results reports are usually ready in a few minutes. On the basis of the results obtained, it is possible to easily plan career development of personnel and move them in the structure of the organization in accordance with their abilities and goals of the company. Thanks to Hogan's assessment, it is possible to determine with accuracy whether the employee is in a suitable position, and the potential candidate corresponds to the vacant position.

Disadvantages of Testing the Candidate Should Know About

Many applicants do not like to be tested. And this has its own reasons. Indeed, employment testing has its drawbacks:
  1. The choice of techniques is often far from ideal. Only a professional can assess the quality of a particular technique. Many companies choose tests "on a whim" and are mistaken. Simply put, some tests measure not the qualities that are assumed, or do not measure them at all.
  2. In addition, it is possible to find almost any version of the test and recommendations for its solving with a certain result in the network.
  3. Companies sometimes violate the test procedure. Each test has its own characteristics and requirements. In some psychological methods, even the time of the meeting is specified (for example, the morning hours).
  4. Disputed (or poor quality) interpretation of results. This is a particularly acute problem for psychological tests. The interpretation should be dealt with by a professional psychologist-diagnostician who has extensive experience with this technique. Many companies that use psychological tests to select employees do not have a professional psychologist on their staff. This leads to another problem - the lack of qualified specialists, conducting employment personality testing and interpreting the results.

The Legality of the Application of This Procedure

It should be noted that at the legislative level, the application of testing for recruitment is not obligatory, so this procedure is strictly voluntary. The applicant has the right to refuse to test, taking into account that with the help of such a procedure, companies will become aware of some of his personal characteristics, which can be provided only if there is an initiative on the part of the applicant for a vacant position.

At the same time, the company’s management does not have the right to use the results of testing, as the main criterion in the selection of applicants, and as the basis for refusal of employment. In accordance with the norms of the law, an applicant can only be denied on the basis of his insufficient qualifications or the lack of relevant work experience.

Every employer wants to cooperate with a qualified employee who successfully copes with all tasks, has a calm disposition and intelligence, and does not create conflicts with colleagues. With the help of testing, every candidate, even the yesterday’s student, can prove yourself from different sides and show exactly the result that will satisfy both the future leader and the applicant for a prestigious position.

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