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One Common Employee Assessment Mistake

August 8, 2013

Choosing the right personality assessment for your organization is not an easy task. Ultimately, you want to choose the employee assessment that best fits the needs of your organization and the target position(s).You can spend weeks sifting through different assessments and asking questions like:

  1. Which will give us the most knowledge about our candidates?
  2. Which test can best predict performance?
  3. Which one give us the most useful information? or
  4. At what point is the assessment too long?

One of the common mistakes that people make is believing that the assessment that measures the most competencies is better. For example, test companies will often have personality assessments that  measure over 20 personality dimensions “to provide you with a more comprehensive view of the candidate.” But, is that 20-dimension personality test really providing you with more information than, say a test with 5 or 10 dimensions? Probably not.92729922

Oftentimes with 20 dimensions, only a few of them will provide unique information that is representative of the individual and the rest are just redundant. In extreme cases, some of the dimensions are not even used at all when predicting employee performance, so candidates spend time providing information that will be of no value to them or the organization. Worse, you might make decisions based on personality factors that aren’t related to the job in question.  In other words, they decrease your ability to make a good decision rather than assist you.

So what should someone look for when determining which personality assessment is the right one for their organization?

  • Instead of getting lost in the number of dimensions, pay attention to how well each dimension is able to predict performance in the target position.  In other words, how relevant are these to the job at hand? 
  • Also, keep the candidate in mind and make sure that the assessment is not unnecessarily long. Candidates will appreciate this and be more likely to provide accurate information about themselves. 

Not sure which type of employee assessment you need?
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Steven Jarrett, Ph.D. Steven Jarrett, Ph.D. is a Senior Consultant at PSI. He has extensive experience developing, implementing, and validating legally defensible selection solutions for organizations. Steven has worked in a variety of industries including manufacturing, retail, healthcare and education.