Resumes, references, and interviews are the standard selection pieces for the hiring process. Resumes give you a summary of a candidate's work history, references give you an idea of a candidate’s work ethic, and an interview gives you a sense of a candidate’s communication style. But how can you gauge what is going to motivate a candidate to perform at their best or how well they will fit into your organization? That’s where a personality assessment comes in.
When using a personality assessment for hiring, the results can give you invaluable information that may uncover talent that can best fortify your overall organization. In fact, it is now estimated that as many as 60 percent of organizations currently use assessments in the hiring process, and reviewing the benefits of an assessment can explain why.
Helps you Find a Better Match
While skills and experience are essential in the selection process, they may not give you the full picture when selecting a candidate. Say you are hiring a new administrative assistant, you want a candidate that is comfortable talking to people and doing administrative tasks. While you may have a selection of candidates that look good on paper, you also want someone that will be motivated by their daily work.
If you give an assessment to your top choices, you'll begin to notice what may motivate your pool of options. For example, if you notice one candidate enjoys administrative tasks, but prefers to work alone while another has little interest in administrative tasks, but is very motivated by connecting with people, which would you choose? A candidate needs to have the personality and passion to feel comfortable in their new role, with a genuine interest in the tasks they’ll be performing.
Personality tests can help to ensure a person’s:
- Interests match the job functions
- Personality is well-suited for the job type
- Needs will be met by the job environment and company culture
You want someone who will be motivated and fulfilled by the position and whose passion will translate to job satisfaction, loyalty, and dedication. This will help ensure the candidate is not just qualified for the position on paper, but truly inspired by the work they will do.
Strengthens The Team
You want a candidate with enough experience and a good skill set, but what happens when their personality conflicts with the company’s overall atmosphere? A candidate may check every box when it comes to experience and have glowing references, but they may not be a good fit for your existing team. Anyone can say they’re a good team player, but people who work well together are more productive and effective at meeting goals. A team of people who prefer working alone will struggle if constantly asked to collaborate. Giving current and prospective hires an assessment can help you find the types of people who fill in the gaps of your team. It is important to consider how different personalities will interact when choosing candidates. New employees should fit your office culture while strengthening and empowering your team.
Personality assessments for hiring can provide a more comprehensive understanding of an individual, which gives you a stronger indication if they’ll fit in with your company's culture. It will let you know if their traits will compliment or balance-out the traits of existing members on your team.
Gives Insight into Leadership Development
A strong candidate may be someone who fits the current position, but a super-strong candidate will be one that can grow and soar beyond the position. The results of an assessment may give you insight into the characteristics and natural strengths that can contribute to the building of exceptional leaders down the line.
If you are hiring for a position that could transition into something new, a personality assessment can help you decide if a candidate will be able to adapt to a changing job role.
Provides Objective Point of View
When trying to hire the best candidate, we can be swayed by several factors. We are naturally inclined to favor people who think in the same way, but hiring an office full of the same person can be unproductive. An office full of salespeople may bring in a lot of deals, but then there is no one to take pride in the production of the product or value calculating the revenue. Also, it can be hard to only rely on the short interaction you get during an interview as an indication of a candidate’s personality.
Personality assessments for hiring take the bias out of the process, giving you data that is objective rather than subjective. These results can provide balance, fairness, and perspective. Instead of hiring a candidate based on his or her similarities to yourself, you’ll be hiring a candidate based on what your organization needs.
Assures a Well-Rounded Workforce
While you definitely want a candidate who fits into your company culture, you also want to make sure you don’t end up with a culture where everyone thinks and acts exactly the same way. This can lead to organizational blind spots. Having a diverse workforce that is well-rounded contributes to company innovation and growth. When your company faces a problem, having different personality types helps to ensure that a variety of solutions are being brought to the table. Assessing your current workforce’s strengths and weaknesses can also help you identify any gaps you may have, while personality assessments can help you fill them.
Just as you want a well-rounded workforce, you also want a well-rounded hiring process. Relying solely on experience and references can leave out important aspects of a person’s personality or mentality. While assessments should not be your only source of information, comparing what you have learned about someone from an assessment to a person’s resume and references can fill gaps that were previously unknown. Personality assessments are one piece of the overall puzzle that can help guide you toward selecting qualified, passionate talent that provides your company with just what it needs to continue on the road to success.
Reaching Further: When Birkman hires new employees, they are given The Birkman Method assessment. Every member of the Birkman team is familiar with the assessment, their own results, and their coworkers' results. Within the company, everyone knows each other’s strengths and personality styles. This enables our company to communicate better and build teams suited for specific projects, while allowing different personality and thinking styles to emerge and thrive.
Madison Buckner is a born and raised Houstonian, and is the daughter of long-time Birkman employee, Carol Buckner. She's been immersed in conversations about personality for her entire life and as a result, has a hunger to learn more about the human mind and how it works. In her free time, Madison enjoys the arts, visiting museums, and watching movies.