A management or leadership assessment test is a mix of exercises, tests, simulations and interviews designed to anticipate how well a management applicant will perform in a certain role. Almost every company now while hiring is taking up such tests so that they pick up the correct candidate for that specific job role. Companies make the candidates go through such test series.
The leadership assessment center is a combination of both a thing and a place. A center can be a place where you send your candidates – run by companies who specializes in taking such assessment tests. Or companies can have an “in-house” assessment center, using their own trained HR staff or managers. Sometimes, the in-house assessment has the support of an outside firm. Some companies also provide “virtual” assessment centers to save time and for comfort. Everything is done virtually with the help of newer technology like Zoom and video-based behavioral simulations.
There are many companies who sells various behavioral and technical assessment tests to their clients. From those tests you should choose the assessment tests which fit in to the specific job position you are looking to fill, and the skills needed in that certain job role. For that you should first define the relevant skill set required in that job role. As per the recent research, near to 76% of organizations with more than 100 employees depend on external assessment such as personality and aptitude tests.
What assessments measure
Pre-hire assessments have been in existence since the Han dynasty in the third century. Chinese leaders used to measure moral integrity, intellect, and knowledge while selecting civil servants. Modern intelligence and personality tests were introduced in Europe and the United States during World War I, to help in military selection, and after World War II companies started taking on such tests for screening applicants. Today companies take assessment tests because they considerably reduce the cost and time of hiring and recruiting.
Competence is generally measured by aptitude tests which consists of questions which check candidates raw reasoning power. Ranging from general IQ questions to questions related to specific skills and abilities, to test what you can do, what you know and what you can learn. The key thing is to remember that employers rely on such tests to just check you have enough learning and reasoning skills.
Most companies look for employees who are trustworthy, ambitious and reliable. These elements not only show whether they would be able to work in the environment but also whether they would fit in organization’s culture and collaborate well. Self-report questionnaires, like personality tests, are often used to check those certain qualities by revealing standard behavior patterns.
Daniel Goleman popularized this concept of emotional intelligence, employers now-a-days are paying a lot of importance on emotional intelligence. As per many psychological studies, emotional intelligence can be directly linked to employee’s leadership talent, overall job performance and entrepreneurial roles. And it’s not confined to certain jobs. Employers assess emotional intelligence through face-to-face interviews, but they also have increasingly started using psychological tests.
All or any of the assessment tools, if used well, can help selecting the right candidates. But for high-level management assessment, where the stakes are much higher, you might need to consider an intensive assessment. The investment in that is well worth it.