When recruiting for a role, it’s important to know that the person you’re considering hiring is the perfect fit. Though many hiring managers base their decisions solely on CVs and interviews, others prefer to use an additional method of testing suitability: skills assessments. 

What are skills assessments and how do they work?

Skills assessments, sometimes also known as talent assessments, are tests designed to see if candidates meet the knowledge, practical skill set, work style or even soft skills that the role in question requires. Many of these tests are carried out online prior to an offer of interview, or are otherwise often carried out at first-round interviews.

The assessment itself might feature hypothetical scenarios that a candidate is asked to deal with through multiple-choice selection, or a mock example of a practical task that a candidate would be expected to carry out if they were to get the job. Some skills assessments for administrative roles might involve typing speed and accuracy tests, and assessments for more senior strategic roles may involve the creation of a presentation. For more entry-level roles, some recruiters may choose to test for certain levels of literacy and numeracy using online assessments.

To know what type of talent assessment you should use, you’ll firstly need to identify what skills are critical for great performance in the role you want to fill. A recruitment agency may be able to help you establish what the best method for your particular role would be.

Why use skills assessments?

Skills assessments allow for a more formalised rating process, which lets recruiters and hiring managers objectively define how well a candidate has performed. As not every potential employee is 100% honest about their skills and prior experience on their CVs or at interview, a standardised test could be a more solid way of predicting job performance.

But assessments aren’t everything

Skills assessments alone won’t give you the full picture of a candidate’s suitability, as they don’t necessarily detect things like self-motivation or drive, so they are best used in conjunction with other methods such as face-to-face interviews. And if you do decide to use skills assessments, in the interest of fairness – and to eliminate unconscious bias – you should assess every candidate equally.

You’ll also want to make sure that skills assessments form a positive part of your candidate experience, and that prospective employees aren’t put off by an overly long-winded assessment process.

If you’d like to know more about using skills assessments as part of your recruitment process, or how to smoothly incorporate them into your candidate experience, please do get in touch with the experts at Optimum Recruitment.






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