How to Hire With Greater Confidence

There was a time when all a candidate needed in order to get a job was a résumé, a winning smile, and a can-do attitude. And being a friend of a friend of the boss didn’t hurt. Then along came a surge in the number of applicants per job, followed by countless job boards, interviews, and interviewers’ opinions, all conspiring to make a hiring manager’s job harder than ever.

In today’s competitive and litigious environment, it’s important to know that your candidate has the right experience and skill set to be successful in the job. That’s a given. But even if they do, what about their behavior and personality? While an in-person intercan give you a sense of the individual, it doesn’t tell the whole story. For example, will they fit in with the other members of your staff? Do their goals align with your company’s? Do they embody the values of your organization? These are important questions, because turnover is expensive and you can’t afford to waste time hiring the wrong candidate.

According to one study, more than half the employees who left their jobs in the last year did so within the first 12 months on the job.1 Wouldn’t it be nice to know you’re not going to be filling that same position yet again within the year? If you’ve had more than your share of turnover lately, you may be starting to question the validity of your current recruiting and screening methods. If that’s the case, it may be time to take a more scientific approach to your hiring process.

While candidate screening isn’t new, it can benefit your business in a number of ways:

• Compliance
From a legal standpoint, assessments standardize the way you evaluate candidates and ensure objectivity in the hiring process.

• Efficiency
By helping to identify the candidates most likely to be successful in the role, assessments can save time and cost in the selection process, reduce turnover, and improve morale.

• Effectiveness
“Companies use testing to find the candidates most likely to succeed in the open positions and to screen out those who are unqualified,” says Lisa Quast, a Forbes magazine contributor.

• Business results
Aon Hewitt found that organizations using pre-employment assessments achieve a 15% improvement in profits. It makes hiring managers happier too. Employees hired using selection assessments are 88% more likely to be rated as “outstanding” on a job performance review.2

Types of selection assessments

You’ll find there’s a wide variety of assessments, measuring everything from cognitive abilities, work skills, language proficiency, physical and motor abilities to evaluating personality, behavior, emotional intelligence, and even integrity. The type of test you choose depends on the type of job you’re filling. For example, if the employee will spend the majority of his or her time taking phone orders and addressing customer service issues, consider role-play and/or video-based tests to determine how the candidate acts and reacts in specific situations. If the position requires an individual to have analytical skills, you’ll want to test their cognitive abilities. The administration method will vary depending on the type of test, from an interview to pencil and paper, to online simulations.

Keep in mind that, while candidate assessments can help round out the picture and give you more confidence in your hiring decisions, there’s no substitute for an actual interview that includes human interaction. So when you consider adding assessments to your recruitment arsenal, keep in mind that testing is a supplement to the process, not a replacement.

Getting it right

Lastly, before you create your own set of test questions – you guessed it – there are legal issues to consider. Most of these arise in connection with screening and evaluation and are related to equal employment opportunity compliance. According to the Uniform Guidelines on Employee Selection Procedures of 1978 issued by the EEOC, every step in the employment process is considered a “test.” Therefore, litigation may result if a challenged selection decision is deemed discriminatory or in violation of state or federal regulations.

ADP® can help you separate the cream from the rest of the crop
With proven screening and selection tools and practices, ADP recruitment solutions help employers better recognize who they should hire. We also provide guidance on how to remain compliant when it comes to your selection assessment strategy.

1 Turnover rates, Equifax Workforce Solutions.
2 Aon Hewitt, Reaching “Hire” Ground in Applicant Screening, December 2012.
3 Aon ADEPT 15™ Adaptive Employee Personality Test

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