Talent Assessment for Recruitment and Selection

Talent Assessment for Recruitment and Selection

In a recent survey by a UK based Consultancy, a staggering 80% of companies questioned said they only used an interview as their preferred method of identifying talent, followed by prior performance results.  Less than 50% used Assessment Centres or Psychometrics.

Standard Interviews are proven to be only 0. 07 reliable, with structured Interviews 0.23 reliable.  According to one prominent US CEO, after only conducting interviews to employ new recruits he found that 46% of the new hires failed within 18 months and only 19% were totally successful in their roles!

Most companies measure employee turnover and in some industries (retail, customer service, hospitality) turnover rates of 30-40% are common and sometimes even accepted. Many studies show that the total cost of losing an employee can range from tens of thousands to 1.5-2 times their annual salary.  The real “total cost” of losing an employee is:

  • Cost of hiring a new person (advertising, interviewing, screening, hiring)
  • Cost of onboarding a new person (training, management time)
  • Lost productivity (a new person may take 1-2 years to reach the productivity of an existing person)
  • Lost engagement (other employees who see high turnover disengage and lose productivity)
  • Customer service and errors (new employees take longer and are often less adept at solving problems).
  • Training cost (over 2-3 years you likely invest 10-20% of an employee’s salary or more in training)
  • Cultural impact (whenever someone leaves others take time to ask “why?”)
  • People are an “appreciating asset.” The longer an employee stays with an organization the more productive he or she gets as they learn the systems, products, team working and create the culture

Other more robust Assessment Methods for Selection and Development include: Aptitude tests, Personality and Motivation Questionnaires, Work simulations, Biographical data, References, Self assessment exercises, 360 Degree Feedback, Situational and Behaviour based Questionnaires, In-tray exercises.  So why use Occupational and Personality Tests?

Occupational tests are designed to provide a fair assessment of abilities and aptitudes, to find out more about the participant’s own strengths, weaknesses, and blind spots as well as to identify whether they are suited to a particular career path.  They assist in identifying Managers who are best suited to the demands of future roles and to place the correct people appropriately in the organisation as part of Talent Management and Succession Planning initiatives.

There is good evidence that Tests can provide information which is objective, reliable and a prediction of job succession and satisfaction and that Aptitude Tests can help the candidate/employee to be fairly assessed in a competitive situation.

When Occupational Tests are combined with Personality Questionnaires an even more comprehensive picture of the candidate/employee emerges which provides an insight in to how people match different jobs.  They also predict typical ways of behaving and how they relate to each other, the way they approach or solve problems and explore the broad range of Personality Characteristics relevant to work.

Personality Questionnaires also assist in identifying Training and Development needs, providing a better understanding of personality and main sources of motivation, in addition to increasing self-awareness and identifying how improvements can be made in certain key skills and Leadership and Management Competencies.

At Natural Talent we encourage our clients to utilise Competency/Situation/Skills Based Interviewing techniques instead of the worn out standard questions which candidates can easily print off the internet and practice.  Once the Competencies for the role are identified, for example, Decision Making, the Interview Questions can be framed around the Competency:

Describe a situation where you have had to take a decision that involved a range of options.  What were the circumstances and how did you reach your decision?  What was the outcome and what did you learn?

In Assessment and Development Centres for Executive Selection we build on this type of question by asking the Manager to provide real specifics around key Leadership and Management scenarios.  In addition utilising the Leadership Judgement Indicator provides a robust prediction of the Decision Making Style of the candidate.

The use of multiple Competency based Assessment methods provides an effective way to highlight the potential of candidates.  Use of multiple Assessors also ensures a fair and objective process.  The ROI of using such methods greatly outweighs the costs of bad hires.

’10/10 for the interview process.  The Consultant was fast, listened well, and she helped you articulate your thoughts without putting words in your mouth.  She quickly identified patterns and connected the dots,’ Senior VP, Technology

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