Many hiring managers have felt the regret of hiring the wrong person.
You invested precious time and resources into posting and interviewing, selecting and on-boarding, and delegating and following-up, only to be faced with the additional disruption and stress associated with losing or removing a bad hire. It’s a vicious cycle, as remaining employees scramble to cover staffing shortages and incur increased workloads, overtime, and reduced morale while you start searching, frantically, again.
Financially, the cost of a bad hire can be incredibly expensive. The Society for Human Resources Management estimates that, on average:
- The cost to replace someone is equal to about 30% of the employee’s first-year salary;
- 36% of new hires fail within the first 18 months; and
- 40% of senior managers hired from outside the organization fail within 18 months of being hired.
Their resume looked great. They said all the right things. We got along great during the interview. So, what went wrong?
Any number of subjective biases, such as non-verbal biases (which include appearance, dress, mannerisms or speech), stereotyping, confirmation bias, or “like-me” syndrome, can trip up many interviewers not trained to ignore them in their decision making. Coupled with common hiring process mistakes, even experienced hiring managers run the risk of making bad hires.
New hire failures don’t always lie with the interviewer or hiring process; psychological attributes play an important role in failed hires. In a 2012 Forbes article, researchers tracking 20,000 new hires pointed to attitude for 89% of the failure rate within an 18 month time frame, while only 11% failed due to lack of skill.
In other cases, the due diligence of hiring for culture fit and values simply didn’t take place.
How do Pre-Employment Testing and Assessments help?
Pre-employment tests take some of the guesswork out of hiring by delivering objective data that provide insight into your candidates.
Scientifically validated aptitude, personality, and skills tests have a wealth of psychological data behind them that demonstrates their ability to predict real-life job performance. In fact, cognitive aptitude is one of the most predictive factors of success used in the hiring process, far more predictive than other common hiring criteria, including experience, education, and interviews. For this reason, many companies rely on pre-employment tests to provide an additional data point that helps them make more informed hiring decisions.
The benefits of using these assessments in your hiring process are attractive: lower turnover, higher productivity, and less time and money spent.
Pre-employment testing allows you to focus on the candidates with the most potential to be a good fit for your company and may also help you identify some candidates who may not have the exact experience needed, but instead stand out with high potential based on their test scores. More importantly, pre-employment tests allow you to compare candidates on a much more objective, data-driven level, especially when compared to resumes and interviews.
Of course, test scores don’t remove the human element from hiring. Tests simply provide an additional, objective factor that you can use to make more informed hiring decisions, ultimately improving your quality of hire and maximizing your bottom line.
Using Pre-Hire Assessments Responsibly
A critical aspect in using assessments is working with a credible provider who fully understands how to guide organizations in ethically and legally using these tools.
There are many different types of tests and selection assessments. Used correctly, they are a very effective means of isolating the best candidates for the job. Used incorrectly, the EEOC cautions they can violate anti-discrimination laws if they disproportionately exclude particular groups or classes of candidates. Hence, the importance of working with providers who can assess your business needs and guide you in the appropriate use of tests or exams, in lieu of purchasing off the shelf or online products from sources that do not do due diligence.
Ready to Learn More?
If you recognize that this aspect of your selection process can use some improvement, check out the Definitive Guide to Pre-Employment Testing from our valued partner Criteria Corp, which takes a deeper dive into everything you need to know about testing, including the most common types of tests, benefits, best practices, and scientific validity.
At Inspiring HR, we uncomplicate HR and empower small businesses. Ready to learn more about how we can help you? Call us at 804-715-1920 or contact one of our HR Business Consultants to schedule a consultation.