Trait Scale Confidence Scores

A unique feature of the Hire Success System is the 5-Star Confidence Factor calculated with each Trait Scale. The 5-Star System means the following:

***** = Very High Confidence
**** = High Confidence
*** = Fair Confidence
** = Below Average Confidence
* = Low Confidence

It is not unusual for a few of the Scales to show "Below Average" or "Low" Confidence.

What you don't want to see are too many Trait Scales with Confidence Factors that are "Below Average" (**) or "Low" (*).

Just having this Confidence Scoring System is a unique feature of the Hire Success System. Most tests provide no information like this at all, or even if they have some overall confidence score, there is no way to know which areas may have caused the lower overall confidence. Hire Success is the only system we are aware of on the market today with this capability.

Once you understand how the Confidence is determined, you will have a very easy way to see at a glance exactly how the Applicant responded to the Characteristic adjectives on the Personality Profile Form.

Understanding Trait Scale Confidence Factors

The first, and most important point you must remember, is that the Confidence Factor does not necessarily imply that the Applicant was trying to be misleading on the Personality Profile Form. Although that is a possibility, it is more the exception rather than the rule. If you took the Personality Profile yourself, chances are, you'll have at least a few lower Confidence scores and you know how you answered the questions accurately. There are several factors that can contribute to a lower Confidence.

What Makes A "High" Confidence Factor

A "High" Confidence Factor (4 or 5 stars), means that the Applicant responded to the Adjectives on the Personality Profile that characterize the Traits on both sides of the Scale with values that are generally supportive of each other. For example, they probably used "1" and "2" values to describe the Characteristics of one Trait on the scale and reciprocal values on the other, which would be "4's" and "5's". If the Trait Value is in the mid-range (4-6), then the Applicant used primarily "2's", "3's" and "4's" to describe the Traits that characterize both ends of the Trait Scale.

Because the values describing one Trait "balance" with the values describing the opposite Trait, we can have higher confidence in our evaluation than if the values were out of "balance". The Hire Success System doesn't want you to concern yourself with how the Factors are derived, rather how to use them as a tool in interpreting the Reports. This is why we use the "5-Star" system rather than a numeric value. You can see at a glance the level of "Confidence" for each Trait Scale. You'll then have an opportunity to ask appropriate questions that apply to the job for which the Applicant is being considered. See the Sample Interview Questions Report for suggestions.

How A Confidence Factor Becomes "Low"

Review for a moment Example #1 above in "How Trait Scales Are Determined". Let's now assume that the Applicant entered all "1" values for all of the Adjectives that characterize both "Patient" and "Impatient". Which one are they… Patient or Impatient? If the Applicant feels all of the adjectives in both lists characterize them most or all of the time, then one might conclude they are lying, at least about one of them, or, what is most often the case, they tend to describe themself in extreme terms, when what they really meant is they can exhibit either behavior or trait at times and may only be envisioning one of those times when thinking about how to respond.

What they are really saying is they can be patient at times and impatient at other times. It would have been better if they would have used the "3" value to describe those terms, because the "3" indicates they are that way about half of the time, but the adjective can and does describe them at times. In most cases, when you discuss this Trait with the Applicant, you'll probably discover that they agree that they are not extremely patient or impatient, as extremely implies that are that way all, or almost all of the time.

The way the Hire Success System handles this example is by indicating the Applicant is a "5" on this Trait Scale, or in this example, half way between Extreme Patience and Extreme Impatience. If you recall in the earlier discussion on how the Trait Values are evaluated and how "5" values on one Trait are like having "1" values on the other, then you will understand if both sides have "1" values, we can't be as confident in the result as we would have been in Example 1 above, or if the Applicant had answered all of the Characteristic Adjectives with the Value of "3".

Therefore, if you see a Trait Value of "5" and a Confidence Factor of one star (*), you immediately know the Applicant generally had all "1" values for the Adjectives characterizing both sides of the scale. If the Trait Value is still "5", but the Confidence Factor is 5 Stars (*****), you will know the Applicant generally entered "3" on the Adjectives that characterized both sides of the Trait Scale.

What Does Low or Below Average Confidence Mean?

In most cases, a Low "Confidence Factor" indicates the trait is "situational". That is, the person is much more like both ends of the scale than the result shown, but when they are more like each of the traits depends on the situation or environment in which they are in at the time. The "Overview Report" will indicate this in a box any time a Low Confidence factor is found.

Suppose, for example, a person's test results were "5" on the Impatient/Patient scale. Although the text of the scale would describe them as being neither extremely patient or extremely impatient, the Low Confidence Factor would indicate the person described themself as being both Very Patient and Very Impatient. This begs the question: "Which one are they?" What you'll probably find when asking the Sample Interview Questions regarding that trait, is it depends on the situation they're in. It is quite normal for several traits to be situational and have a low Confidence Factor, so you should not be overly concerned with a few.

Another possible cause for the low Confidence Factor could have been the person was trying to sway the test. Experience shows that is far less likely than it being "situational", but it can occur. In either case, however, Sample Interview Questions are generated to help you find an answer from the applicant. Provide ample time and opportunities for the applicant or employee to fully explain themself regarding this issue.

Is "Fair" Confidence Good Or Bad?

The Hire Success System does not attempt to define things as "good" or "bad", but instead tries to accurately and fairly represent the facts based on the Applicant's own self-assessment of the 100 adjectives that characterize certain personality types and traits.

"Fair" Confidence is the result of the Applicant responding in such a way that isn't completely contradictory, such as all "1" values for all of the Adjectives that characterize the Traits on both ends of the scale. Again, if we go back to Example #1 above, but substitute the value of "3" where there were "5's", then we see an applicant that is being described as "Extremely Patient" and "Patient half the time and Impatient half the time".

If this were the case, the Trait Scale would probably be a "7" toward "Patient", but the Confidence Factor would be "Fair", 3 stars, because the Applicant indicated they may be "Impatient" at least some, perhaps half of the time. For this reason, they could not be a "9" in patience, but would still be characterized as "Patient", while the "Fair" Confidence indicates there may be instances where they may also appear impatient. Only you can determine if that is what you're looking for to fill the open position in your company. We consider 3-stars, or "Fair" as an acceptable level of Confidence.

Please keep in mind, that when we are dealing with people, and their personality, we're not dealing with absolutes, "black and white" or "binary" data, rather it is almost always some shade of gray.