Psychometric Tests are defined as tests which helps in measuring the mind. Unlike educational qualification and background, competencies, experience, behavioral preferences and personality of a person can be way more difficult to assess during any form of screening or selection.
Employers use these psychometric tests during screening or appraising to help give an overall analysis of a candidate and their fitment to the job role. There have been on-going debates on the value of these tests, but those who have used it believe that it can give a more objective overview of a candidate’s personality, character, working styles, strengths and weaknesses. It is recommended that a psychometric test shouldn’t be used in silo, instead it should be a part of a bigger picture.
Psychometric testing measures number of attributes which include emotional intelligence, critical thinking, reasoning, personality, motivators and stressors. Interviews or people-driven screening techniques can be subjective and even though employers are pretty thorough with their skills and competencies assessments yet there is a need to assess the values and personality and to check if those values align with the organization’s value – this need is fulfilled by plugging in the psychometric tests.
Many employers also use these psychometric tests as a part of multiple assessment process or to be precise, assessment centres wherein a number of candidates come together with a team of assessors to explore and observe their suitability or developmental needs for a certain role or promotion. The term assessment centre is not usually a physical location, as the name suggests – it is planned set of activities that are used to assess the candidates’ fitment of the job. These activities include appropriate psychometrics, competency-based interviews, role-plays, in-basket exercises or group discussions.
Likewise, psychometric tests can be used in multiple stages.
To categorize them and to make our lives simpler, here are some broad categories:
- Recruitment and Selection – Psychometric assessments are often used in recruitment and selection process to assess the match between the candidate, role and the organization. As explained earlier, these tests help in analysing beyond skills and competencies.
- Coaching – Psychometric tests play an important role in coaching sessions as they help the coachee in understanding their strengths and improvement areas in order to orchestrate their personal growth and learning. Usually, these tests are used prior to the start of coaching sessions in order to gauge the level of strengths and development areas of the coachee and coaches find it helpful in structuring their conversations through the reports generated.
- Career Development – Many psychometric tests such as VOCATION or interest and values inventories, are used to help individuals consider their future career path and fields where they may want to have a career.
- Team Development – For training and developing teams a very prominent psychometric test that comes to our mind is the Five Behavior of a Cohesive Team by Wiley. This test is based on Patrick Lencioni’s Five Dysfunctions of a team and assesses the current scores of the team on those 5 parameters and tell us the way-forward in improving it. Generally team assessments will help in improving the teamwork and interpersonal effectiveness of team members.
- Succession Planning – As discussed above, psychometric tests can be used in developing the leadership pipeline by assessing a list of candidates who are suitable for the next role. The assessment part is usually done via assessment centres in which psychometric assessments are used to assess the role fitment.
With the areas where psychometric tests can be used, it is not difficult to foresee the fruitful advantages of a psychometric test. Strengthscape, helps its client in getting the best psychometric tests as per clients’ needs.