Why did the scarecrow get offered the job? Perhaps the blackbird put in a good word? Or, was their proven resilience a top priority? How can we assess whether the answers given during the interview process are truly reflective of actual in-the-field performance and ensure a candidate’s personality characteristics best suit your organisational strategy - particularly during this period of relentless change?
Our varied experiences of the pandemic have highlighted just how extraordinarily different we are from one another, and how no two workplaces are the same. Staffing policy changes and restructuring will certainly be on the cards. Businesses are having to adapt, and fast. Whatever your business strategy, psychometric tools provide personality insights that enhance each step of the hiring and restructuring processes, as well as supporting employee wellbeing. This ability to tune into individual differences to achieve the desired ‘fit’ for the role also reduces the chance of a costly hiring or redeployment mistakes. How?
By defining a concise job description
It's important to accurately identify the key competencies required for success in any role. Creativity? Decision making? Resilience? Will longer-term remote work be required? If so, which competencies would best support this? The ideal candidate may be someone that reinforces existing culture, or someone who ‘shakes things up’ and offers a new perspective.
The wider team
The level of likely disruption from technological advances that are shaping your business landscape
The skills the company requires to succeed in today’s climate of change
Past retention issues
Don’t just pick from a wish list of competencies you think MIGHT be needed, think about which competencies really make the difference between someone who can do the job well and someone who will struggle with the demands of the role.
Online tools, like the Profile:Match2 Job Analysis Survey (JAS), identify the key competencies for any role by gathering insights, intuitions, and opinions from those who have an informed view. Whether this involves people who have filled the role previously - managers, peers, or industry experts - the collated output configures a bespoke candidate selection questionnaire targeting the characteristics required for high performance. This is a foundational step – get this right and things will fall into place.
By supporting fair and objective candidate selection, plus a structured and relevant interview guide
Psychometric assessments allow you to screen candidates prior to interview, effectively assessing the strengths and limitations of each applicant objectively in relation to an accurate job description.
Saving valuable time
Under the weight of research and persistent criticism, informal, unstructured interviews have long been recognised as inadequate. This is supported by Nobel Laureate Daniel Kahneman. In the recently published book, ‘Noise’ (2021); Kahneman and colleagues describe how human judgements can be derailed by ‘noise’, factors that reduce the accuracy of decision making. Noise can come from such everyday mundane factors as time of day, whether the interviewer is tired, too hot, or simply having a bad day. To reduce the potential for focus to stray, as well as to mitigate bias, an interview guide provides a common framework for each candidate to be compared against, using the EXACT same yardstick. This framework promotes clarity and insight into the candidate’s competency scores, while maintaining structure, and a tight focus on the requirements for successful performance in the role. “By structuring the judgment task, we can improve the quality of the judgment by directing people to the same facts in the same way”, states Kahneman, 2017.
By supporting ongoing personal development
In addition to selection, personality assessments support onboarding and play a useful role in addressing the developmental needs of the individual once in post. For example, an assessment can identify the team members who may be more self-critical and require regular feedback and moral support whilst working from home – or the team members that are thriving in autonomy, remaining thorough and organised in their approach to work and relishing their new-found independence. This notion is supported by Biggs, 2020, in his research into whether individual personality traits moderate workers’ engagement. Biggs concluded that “psychological assessment could provide a distinct advantage in managing and understanding the individual differences in employees and how to get the best out of their performance whilst protecting their mental well-being.”
In today’s rapidly evolving climate, research by Gartner cites “30% of the skills needed just three years ago will soon be irrelevant”, with 69% of HR executives reporting increased pressure from employees to prepare them for future roles. Psychometric tools provide a comprehensive, in depth perspective of an individual’s personality, increasing self-awareness and providing a solid basis for development. This allows managers to maximise company investment in Human Capital, meeting changing circumstances and demands while deploy employees according to their strengths, aspirations and potential.
Our team at Psychological Consultancy Ltd. have developed Profile:Match2, the sensibly priced, BPS validated, psychometric tool that supports each step of this hiring process. View our free eBook to learn more.
Why DID the scarecrow get the job? Because he was truly outstanding in his field.