Developing and Applying Baseline Files

In the Hire Success System, a "Baseline" file refers to a database outlining the Primary and Secondary personality types and the high and low range within each of the 20 Trait Scales representing the characteristics and traits of the most successful employees in a particular job or position at your company.

Baselines are one of the key features of the Hire Success System, helping you understand exactly which traits to look for when hiring a new employee by identifying key characteristics necessary for a specific job.

Success Traits

It takes all kinds of personality types to build a successful organization. Some must be leaders, while others just want security, a good paycheck and well-defined guidelines in which to work.

Some positions need people who are relentless with detail. But people who are outgoing, friendly and love to be with others can be a real asset, too! Perhaps some of the people in the sales or customer service department have this type of outgoing personality. The detail-oriented bookkeeper can't imagine having to call talk with strangers every day or try and sell a product. At the same time, the top salesperson can't understand why anyone would want to work all day and never talk to anyone.

Having people with different personality types builds a strong foundation for your company. When talents, skills and personality traits are fully utilized to their advantage, an employee usually enjoys what he or she is doing, has an excellent chance of being a top performer and is less likely to leave. Once you begin to think about the roles each of these people play, you'll begin to see the COMMON characteristics in the most successful people in specific jobs.

When the Hire Success Personality Profile is used to measure the strength of key traits in your employees, you have an accurate and objective way of identifying these characteristics and determining the "range" in which most of the successful employees score.

This employee information is then transferred into a Baseline File and is used by the Hire Success System to provide a visual frame of reference on the Summary Report so you can see at a glance exactly whether a new applicant's traits fall either inside or outside the baseline range for a particular job – and if outside, how far outside they may be.

Having the ability to see this information graphically makes it easier to identify applicants who come very close to the same traits exhibited by your most successful employees in that job.

Auto-Baseline Feature

Hire Success has developed an automated tool that will read the Personality Profile records from any number of people – preferably at least 3 – and then calculate the mean Trait Value of each Trait Scale, as well as the Standard Deviation of each scale. It then considers one standard deviation on either side of the mean and rounds the value up or down to the nearest whole number to develop a suggested range for the group being analyzed.

The group of people you choose for this could be the "best" or most successful employees in a particular job, or they could be the least successful. Once the data is available from both, you or your company's management should review the data for applicability to the particular job. For more information, see our article on "Automatic Baseline File Generation.”

Management Involvement

Ultimately, it’s up to each company to determine which traits are applicable to the job for which a baseline is being developed.

For example, if the job you’re hiring for is a sales position, certainly "Persuasive" would be an applicable, and justifiable, personality trait to consider. However, if you’re hiring a forklift operator, persuasiveness may have noting at all to do with the job, and thus probably should NOT be considered for baseline development.

In order to maintain compliance with current U.S. laws, job applicability must be a factor when using a trait as a selection tool.

Management, including supervisory and middle management staff who may oversee the job, should review the suggested baseline data from both the most and least successful employees. Some traits will be the same or have significant overlap, and thus may not be a "distinguishing" trait between the most and least successful, even if those traits are still important for the job.

There are almost always a few key traits that are distinguishably different between the most and least successful employees, and it’s those traits that management should focus on to develop the final baseline file.

For example, let’s imagine that the position you’re hiring for is a sales position, requiring a high level of customer relationship building within a long-term, repeat sale environment.

Suppose we found that upon comparing your most and least successful salespeople, your most successful were less aggressive, more patient and more compassionate than the least successful people. Other traits were either similar between the most and least successful salespeople or weren't applicable for this job.

If that were the case, then those three traits/characteristics – less aggressive, more patient and more compassionate – would be the key baseline file data that you’d target for hiring new people or promoting others into that position. A Baseline File would then be created and you would use it for comparison each time a new Personality Profile was given to new applicants for that particular position.