Behavioral Assessment Testing: Helping You Find the Best Employees

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5 November 2021 >> , ,

Behavioral Assessment Testing: Helping You Find the Best Employees

Behavioral Assessment Testing: Helping You Find the Best Employees

TAKEAWAY: Hiring the wrong employee can have disastrous consequences, which is why behavioral assessment testing can be such a critical tool in your recruitment arsenal. 

By Jennifer Crump

Bad hires can be incredibly costly for your company, from both a financial perspective and a time perspective. A recent Robert Half survey found that managers wasted an average of four months on new hires, including 11 weeks to realize the new hires were not a good fit and five weeks to restaff the position. Worse, three in four senior managers admitted they had hired the wrong candidate for a role. The risk of a bad hire and the negative impact they bring along with them has dramatically increased over the last year.

There is a lot at stake for employers. Of course, there is the direct loss of productivity and costs associated with hiring, letting go, and rehiring for positions. However, a bad hire can also decrease team morale and foster a general loss of productivity among team members. They will also add unnecessary stress on supervisors. Estimates for the actual cost of hiring the wrong person vary widely from $15,000 to 1.5 to 3.5 times the hire’s salary. These estimates consider everything from advertising the position to training and onboarding.

Beginning your interview process with a behavioral assessment can mitigate the effects of these bad hires and help ensure you are hiring the right fit for a particular role. Here is how behavior assessment testing can help you find the best employees.

How behavioral testing works

Behavioral testing is used during recruitment and employee development to assess core competencies required to perform a job successfully. It tests for behavioural competencies including skills, knowledge, and personal traits specific to a role or position. It can take the form of interviews, direct supervision, and self-observation. In essence, they provide you with some insight into a potential employee’s personality, motivations, and temperament. 

In an employment context, candidates are often presented with a series of work-related scenarios and must choose from a series of actions. Their response to these scenarios can tell you a lot about their potential competency in the role. The tester will often begin by asking the employer a series of archived questions to discuss which might be valid for the specific industry and position. They might also test the survey out on existing employees and get feedback, revising the test before applying it to potential new employees. This helps customize the assessment to their specific needs.

Behavioral testing differs from personality testing and cognitive testing because it tests for behavior rather than thoughts and feelings or job-specific skills. It shows employers how potential employees might react to specific situations rather than how they think about things. In this way, it is often a better indicator of possible job performance.

Benefits of behavioral assessments

There are numerous benefits to using behavioral assessments in your recruiting process. In essence, these tests can be used to gauge how a candidate will fit into your company culture, what their potential for success is in the role, and how they will likely approach both work and co-workers. 

1. Highly customizable 

One of the significant bonuses of behavioral assessments is that they are highly customizable. For example, someone in the service industry needs a different approach than someone in sales, and behavioral assessment can be tailored to these exact needs. You can address your organization’s specific needs when setting up your behavioral assessment testing, tailoring the questions or scenarios to target exactly what you need to know.

2. Allow for communication of company culture

Behavioral assessments also allow you to impart your brand values and company culture. This will ensure the employee sees themselves as a good fit before they accept the job. 

3. Predict employee performance

You want to hire an employee who will thrive in their role. Behavioral assessments are excellent predictors of on-the-job performance because they simulate actual situations an employee may encounter. [INSERT link to TalentClick Case Study and add an opt-in campaign to complete free trial]

4. Give employees a sense of the job

Behavioral assessments deliver realistic job performance testing for employees. They provide the potential employees being considered with a sense of what it will actually be like working for you in a particular position.

5. Provide an opportunity for easy feedback

Giving post-interview feedback to unsuccessful candidates can be a challenge. Using the behavioural assessment results can provide you with real data you can then offer to candidates. It lets them know where they performed well and where they didn’t. It helps them see that they just weren’t the right fit for the particular role or your particular organization.

6. Make data-driven decisions

While employers have primarily eliminated obvious biases from their hiring process, unconscious bias is difficult for many to overcome. Assessment results provide you with hard data you can use to justify either hiring or not hiring an employee that is free of bias — conscious or unconscious.

7. Ensure objective comparisons

When you have two good candidates, it can be challenging to choose between them, especially if they possess similar skillsets and a similar level of experience. A behavioral assessment can provide objective data that serves as an additional basis for comparison.

8. Hire confidently and efficiently 

Behavioral assessments can also improve confidence in hiring decisions. They streamline the process by eliminating potential poor fits and improve your return on investment in hiring new employees.

Tools and services to consider

It can be daunting to come up with behavioral assessment testing measures from scratch, but don’t worry — you don’t have to. Utilize the expertise of companies who have already set up particular surveys, tests, or frameworks that can benefit your organization. Most occupational testing and search firms offer behavioral assessments services. Depending on your contract, you can usually access and customize these services to fit specific locations and roles. 

A variety of tools and technologies can also help you deliver behavioral assessments to potential employees. These are especially valuable to in-house recruitment efforts. For example, SureHire offers TalentClick, an online service that is a global leader specializing in predictive analytics using employee behavioral assessments. TalentClick bundles four popular assessment tools into one survey that offers employers valuable pre-hire insights that can help ensure you select the right candidates for your team.

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