The Best Kind Of Hiring Assessment For Candidates

It turns out the best assessment an employer can ask candidates to complete during the recruiting process might be no assessment at all.

Classically, hiring assessments don't make for great candidate experience.

Innovative new technology just entering the market allows employers to get hiring assessment data without making candidates fill out a much-dreaded on-line questionnaire. It provides a much better candidate experience, and scales more effectively across an employers entire flow of candidates being considered for hire, with additional uses for internal talent management or mobility.

The existing world of hiring assessments is ripe for modern digital transformation.

Most assessments candidates are asked to complete today are delivered as cumbersome on-line versions of their paper-based predecessors, resulting in a horrible candidate experience. Regardless of the interface, assessments come with attached stress for the candidate. Employers may ask to assess a candidate’s personality, behaviors, job related skills, intelligence, critical thinking skills, or work style and more in what is normally a one-way conversation. Few employers share results, perspective gained, or any details on how the information will be used. It can leave the candidate feeling like they’ve provided a high level of transparency to themselves, with very little reciprocation from the potential employer.

 

Candidate experience be damned. Employers want more data.

Hiring is hard. A bad hiring decision can be one of the most expensive mistakes an employer can make. Much of the hiring decision is based on unstructured data (resumes, LinkedIn profiles, etc.), which can largely be subjective (interview feedback, references, etc.)  In light of this, it’s understandable that data used to support a hiring decision, or predict an employee’s future performance is attractive.

As a result, the use of talent assessment technology to help make better hiring decisions by employers is on the rise with employers of all sizes, and across industries. The Talent Board’s Candidate Experience Research claims that the use of assessment technology by employers is number two only to the recruiting platforms used to manage the overall proUse of hiring assessment technology is on the risecess. Our recent #HRWINS survey showed that 40% of employers expect to buy new assessment technology in 2017. 15% of those new systems will be replacing existing assessment tech.

Great data. Bad experience.

The candidates aren’t the only ones suffering through assessments. In our recent #HRWINS survey employers using talent acquisition technology rated their ability to integrate data and usability of the tech as two of their biggest challenges. The assessment data that is leveraged in hiring decision is commonly the equivalent of a “pass/fail” metric added to the ATS profile record along with a PDF attachment of a results summary.  The data acts as more of a “gate” on the track the candidate is on versus a qualitative view of the candidate’s best fit.

A broken model.

Most assessments are sold to employers in some variation of a volume-based pricing model. You pay per assessment, or in “volume bands” of assessments taken. The result here is that most employers implement the assessment later in the hiring process when they are looking at a slate of finalists.  Employers would get more value from using assessments earlier in the process – assessing ALL candidates. This would shed light on many candidates that aren’t making it through traditional resume or profile screens, but are actually great fits for the company. Today these candidates largely end up an unresponsive “black hole”.

The transformation has begun.

Innovative new technology, based on validated behavioral science, is taking advantage of developing trends in data analytics and social profile analysis. The result allows employers to get the same kind of both quantitative and qualitative view to candidate assessment data without forcing candidates to fill out on-line questionnaires, but by candidates agreeing to share their social profiles. In layman’s terms, the systems then correlate the candidate’s social profile and social exhaust data with assessment results.

One such innovator leading the charge is London, UK based The Chemistry Group. At October’s HR Technology Conference and Exhibition in Chicago they demonstrated a Facebook application being used by SAP (their customer) that went through candidate assessment process, gave SAP insight on the best jobs they have to offer the candidate, gave the candidate perspective on the roles best for them at SAP (and otherwise), and started the interview scheduling process. It all happened on an iPhone, within 1 to 2 seconds of the candidate sharing their profile. Having built its intellectual property and science over the last decade, and being founded by a career leader in talent acquisition and management in the British telecommunications industry, The Chemistry Group is innovating in assessment technology at an accelerated pace. Their technology is in use with large global employers today, and their results are all proving out exceptional ROI.

The Chemistry Group’s offering isn’t just the next step for traditional assessment technology. Their science is based on a decade of proving that the top performers in organizations are not found based on the industry standards of educational background or skills/work experience, but by five other dynamics that need to be tailored for each employer and culture, sometimes down to a departmental level. This is not one-size-fits-all standardized testing.

What is exciting to me about this approach is that the assessment process can be opened up to an employer’s entire candidate flow with an IMPROVEMENT on candidate experience, while identifying candidates that would otherwise be overlooked. The potential positive impact in diversity and inclusion could be staggering.

The Chemistry Group is one of the vendors I chose, and coached, for the mega-session, “Meet The Next Great HR Technology” competition at the HR Technology Conference in Chicago. The audience there validated their approach, putting them in the top 3.

Learn more about The Chemistry Group and meet their CEO Roger Philby on the latest edition of the HR Market Watch podcast, “What Great HR Technology Looks Like”,on the HR Happy Hour Network.

 

 

 

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