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10 Signs Your Company Needs Employee Assessments

February 26, 2015

10-SignIf we’ve learned anything, it’s that people like lists. In particular, people like lists of signs, reasons, and happenings that educate them on things they might not know about themselves or others. Therefore, we wanted to give the people what they like: We’ve concocted a list of signs that can help you diagnose whether your company needs pre-employment assessment solutions. The numbers do not indicate importance, and there most certainly are other factors that affect the need for pre-employment assessment solutions. We’ve dwindled the list down to 10, and each sign to why your company should be doing itself a favor by investing in pre-employment assessment solutions.

1. Your talent pool is too large

If your talent pool is in the hundreds for a particular job, your company could most definitely benefit from pre-employment assessments. Assessments such as an online application and screening tool, can help you safely reduce your applicant population anywhere from 5 – 15%. An online application will eliminate anyone who does not meet the basic qualifications for the job, and a screening tool will get rid of the candidates who are most unlikely to be a good fit for the job. Taking this a step further, a more robust, job relevant assessment can reduce your application pool even more dramatically. Assessments are an excellent way to objectively eliminate members from your applicant pool who are not likely to be successful on the job in a legally defensible manner.

2. Your talent pool is too small

If your talent pool is too small, then you may be more inclined to be too lenient and biased when hiring individuals for job openings. If you hire someone who does not meet all of the requirements of the job and who likely will not be a good fit for the job and company, they are likely not going to last long. Even worse, they are going to cost you in terms of on boarding, training, and time spent. If they remain on the job, other problems could result in terms of negative coworker perceptions and productivity loses.

3. Your current talent isn’t performing

If your company’s current employee population isn’t performing, assessments can help. Competency based employee assessments are designed to help organizations assess candidates against the most critical components, or competencies, required for successful job performance. By implementing a selection process with assessments such as a screening tool and an in-depth assessment, you can by confident that you are bringing in the best of the best into your organization. So, what do we do about those low-performing employees who are already on the job? Certain assessments can also be used for developmental purposes so that current employees can get a gauge for their strength and challenge areas and work to improve upon their challenges.

4. Your current talent is causing you to lose money

Is your current talent causing you to lose money in terms of safety incidents, turnover, or lawsuits? Assessments can be designed to strategically eliminate individuals in the selection process who are shown to be the most riskiest candidates in terms of safety, absenteeism, dependability, and other key areas that can relate to a loss in productivity or money. Hiring individuals who can pose a threat to the safety and productivity of your company can cause numerous hardships for your company including money lost and poor reputation.

5. Your current hiring process is not legally defensible

If your current hiring process is unfairly discriminating individuals of a particular race or gender, then your hiring process is not legally defensible. By using a selection process that is not legally defensible, you are essentially making your company a target for lawsuits, a bad reputation, and often times, a huge loss of money. Putting job relevant assessments into your hiring process that have been proven to select candidates fairly and accurately when used consistently is a legally sound way to hire and retain candidates.

6. Your talent retention is low

If turnover is an issue at your company, then you can likely benefit by using assessment(s) in your hiring process. Turnover is an issue that all companies typically face at one point or another. When turnover is dysfunctional, negative consequences result for the company in terms of added stress, reduced productivity, and money wasted. Turnover is multifaceted in that multiple factors can affect whether or not an employee is going to turnover, including a company’s culture and climate, coworkers, and fit to the specific job. Assessments that gauge turnover are designed to help you answer two questions: 1) does the individual behave in a way that indicates they are likely to turnover, and 2) do the individual’s responses indicate that they will be satisfied performing the requirements of the job. If a candidate responds in a way that indicates they will be unlikely to turnover and that they will be satisfied with the job, we can determine that they will likely be a good fit for the job.

7. You are a government contractor

If you are a federal contractor of the United States, then you must abide by the selection rules of the Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs (OFCCP) under the U.S. Department of Labor. The OFCCP seeks to enforce affirmative action and equal employment opportunity to organizations that are contracted with the federal government. In a nutshell, if you are not in compliance (e.g., if you are hiring candidates unfairly or you are not appropriately tracking applicant data), they will find you, and they will fine you. Therefore, it is very important to make sure that you are using legally defensible selection practices, such as a validated pre-employment assessment, in the hiring process.

8. Your hiring process is not consistent

If your hiring process is not consistent, you are putting your organization at legal risk. All candidates should have the same experience during the hiring process as to avoid discrimination claims. Not following a consistent process can also have negative implications for candidates. For example, it is not uncommon that candidates being considered for a particular job know one another. If it gets out that Bobby Sue had an interview with a hiring manager, and Betty Lou was told that there would be no interview, this could cause negative perceptions about the particular company and interest in the job may be lost.

9. Your hiring process is not efficient

Like working in a restaurant, recruiting is one of those jobs that everyone should experience at least once in their lifetime. The stress and strain of trying to find and hire the right candidates within a certain timeline can be very overwhelming. Dealing with a cranky hiring manager if you aren’t finding the right candidates only adds to this stress! Therefore you should implement a hiring process flow that will make life easier and more efficient. Pre-employment assessments are often online and automatic, requiring little administrative burden. For example, a selection process can be set up so that candidates apply for a position on line, submit their resume, and go through an initial screening tool all before an HR or recruiting member screens or speaks with a candidate. By taking out manual steps of the process, much time and energy can be saved.

10. Your hiring decisions are not based off of objective measures

Using objective measures, like assessments, in your company’s hiring process is one way to ensure that you are making unbiased decisions about candidates. Subjective measures, like a phone screen or unstructured interview, are often influenced by one’s own personal opinions, and thus, are not as accurate or predictive of job performance. Subjective measures are open to interpretation by individuals and should be used only when proper rater training has taken place. Additionally, subjective measures can lead to legal hardship if information collected is not relevant to the job at hand and is being used to make hiring decisions.

If you have experienced one or more of the signs above within your organization, then you can definitely benefit from pre-employment assessment solutions.

5 Steps to Getting Started with Manufacturing Employee Assessment


Lindsey Burke Lindsey Burke is a Senior Consultant based in the Pittsburgh office of PSI. She is largely responsible for client support and managing clients in industries including manufacturing, sales, and healthcare. Lindsey completed her M.A. in Industrial and Organizational Psychology from Xavier University and earned a B.A. and B.S. in Psychology from Kent State University.