what-is-pre-employment-testing

What is Pre-Employment Testing?

A pre-employment test is an examination given to job candidates by a potential employer prior to hiring. The purpose of these types of tests is to determine personality traits and characteristics, cognitive abilities, job knowledge and skills, as well as behaviors.

In short, they help employers gain a better understanding of job applicants prior to making a hiring decision. 

Pre-employment tests are used by hiring managers, HR departments and businesses to screen candidates and test for many things, including:

  • Personality or character traits
  • Skills and abilities
  • Job knowledge (i.e.., technical or theoretical expertise in a particular field)
  • Software or language proficiency
  • Emotional intelligence (i.e., how well someone builds relationships and understands emotions)
  • Integrity
  • Drug or alcohol use.

What Can Pre-Employment Tests Check For?

There are many types of pre-employment tests that can help you understand – prior to an interview – whether or not a candidate could be a good fit for a particular job. For instance:

  • Aptitude and skills tests offer an objective way to evaluate job candidates’ knowledge of particular subjects or software, determine their ability to perform specific tasks, and check for basic on-the-job skills required to perform effectively.
  • Personality profile tests allow you to discover the unique qualities and character traits of applicants in advance to determine who is best suited for a particular job. For instance, you can check to see if someone is patient, detail-oriented, calm, etc.
  • Integrity tests are pre-employment tests that give you the chance to ask job applicants about key behaviors and issues that could adversely affect your business. Questions focus on areas such as honesty, drug and alcohol use, integrity and propensity towards anger or violence.

Why Use Pre-Employment Tests?

Using employment testing can provide much more information than you could get just looking at a resume and holding a 30-minute interview. Pre-employment tests like these can also save you time and money during the hiring process because:

  • You can quickly narrow down your list of applicants Using pre-employment testing can help you determine which candidates to bring in for interviews.
  • It'll help you improve your interviews. By using testing results to create questions that focus on key issues and questions, you can streamline your interview process.
  • It ensures that candidates have the desired traits, skills and behaviors. Once you’ve determined which traits are critical for success in a particular role (or to fit in with your company culture), pre-employment testing can help find applicants that fulfill that role.
  • You can reduce the chances of bad hires. This can also help lower your turnover rate.

Pre-employment tests can be used at any time prior to hiring to determine whether people have the character traits and/or job skills you’re looking for.

However, at Hire Success®, we’ve found that pre-employment testing is best used early in the hiring process, because by testing all applicants who make your initial “cut,” you’ll be able to weed out any candidates who don’t really have what you’re looking for (and may have just sent out a bunch of resumes without giving the process much thought).

Plus, you may find that some of your best candidates are those who don’t look as strong on paper, but who have just the skills and traits you’ve identified as being critical to the job.

The Benefits of Using an Online Pre-Employment Testing System

For all the reasons stated above, it’s far better to use an established hiring and pre-employment testing system that offers validated, reliable tests developed by professionals if you decide to use pre-employment tests.

An online system provides much more value – and saves you much more time – than trying to create, administer and score tests individually. Sending and receiving tests one at a time (not to mention scoring and recording) via email quickly becomes an organizational nightmare.

And systems like Hire Success® give you the chance to modify tests – for instance, on topics such as math, grammar or software programs such as Excel or Word – as well as create your own custom aptitude tests on any subject.

Plus, online pre-employment testing systems help you:

  • Organize all your hiring information in one place
  • Get access to tests & results from any device with an Internet connection
  • Create a central location where you and your team can review, post and share job information
  • Link directly from your website to the system, post job specifics and requirements and immediately provide testing links when an application is submitted.

Want to Know More About Employment Testing?

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