8 Ways to conduct assessments of candidates

Finding the best talent for a team is always a long process. The traditional assessment and recruitment techniques can be ramped up to become more efficient with the use of technology. Tech tools can make the process faster and, more often than not, better.

Here’s a list of assessment techniques that could be implemented by most organisations. Many of these techniques are very handy when assessing the finalised candidates.

    1. Audio-based assessment
      Such tests are designed to assess a candidate’s listening skills, ability to understand and follow oral instructions and discussions, and depth of domain knowledge. Candidates could be asked to listen to audio clips and complete tasks based on the clips.
    2. Video-based assessment
      Designed around video case studies, video-based assessment is useful to check a candidate’s listening and viewing skills. Asynchronous interviews, where a candidate video records answers, are becoming very popular as an online assessment tool. Such interviews are often AI-powered, which makes it useful as a screening round. Sometimes built with face-scanning algorithms, such applications can analyse facial expressions, tone of voice, vocabulary and body language. The technology is not always perfect; nevertheless, it can be a handy tool. However, it can be a little biased, depending on who has built the algorithm.
    3. Psychometric assessment
      Psychometric tests or aptitude tests are quite insightful and can pick out personality traits otherwise not easily discernible in a face-to-face interview. Such tests are being increasingly used for corporate recruitment as well as in institutes of higher learning. Test scores are used to analyse personality details such as strengths, weaknesses, decision-making abilities, areas of interest and other traits.
      Popularly used tests are verbal and numerical reasoning tests, personality tests and situational judgement tests. Skills and problem-solving tests can analyse how a candidate will perform under stress, his/her logic skills and creative thinking style. There are options to take the psychometric tests online too.
    4. Career profiling-based assessment
      Organisations are increasingly using career profiling tests to identify candidates’ areas of interest to understand whether they are suitable for a role. Such tests are also used in educational institutes to filter candidates.
    5. Games and exercises
      Gamification is one of the newest tools being used to assess talent. It improves the candidate’s application experience too. Like psychometric tests, gaming tasks and activities can assess various skills such as critical thinking, problem solving and logic. Games make the process more engaging and are surprisingly insightful when it comes to understanding candidate skills.
      Older established methods include group tasks, role play and presentations. All these effectively show how people behave or perform in different life-situations. It is important to understand people’s working style and group behaviour before a candidate becomes part of an organisation.
    6. Soft skills assessment
      About 25 per cent of any job requires soft skills, which are, perhaps, among the most difficult to assess. Trying to assess such skills during an interview is challenging since most candidates will come prepared with the most favourable responses.
      Relationship building, communications, leadership skills, adaptability, strategic thinking, learning and interpersonal skills are critical skills at all levels of the corporate ladder. True, personality tests are not sufficient to base a recruitment decision on, but they are very useful in conjunction with other tests and tools.
      Candidates could be asked to list the soft skills necessary to succeed in the role they’re interviewing for, and how they stand against these skills. Candidates could be asked to solve a problem that requires soft skills, or take an online soft skills test.
      HirePro assessment offers very handy tools to test the ‘Big 5’ personality traits, also known as OCEAN. The traits are:

        1. Openness to experiences
        2. Conscientiousness
        3. Extraversion
        4. Agreeableness
        5. Neuroticism
    7. Work simulation
      Probably one of the most used techniques of assessment — work simulation — requires candidates to demonstrate a skill that will be required on the job. It could involve role-playing, delivering a sales pitch or completing a task such as writing code. Candidates can be assessed on many skills during such a round. This way, the candidates also get a taste of what it will be like to work in the organisation.
    8. Structured interviews
      While casual interviewing techniques are gaining ground, structured interviews are still considered very effective. A set of predetermined questions makes the interviews impartial since every candidate gets an equal opportunity to answer the same questions. This reduces the chances of recruitment bias too
    Choose the most appropriate assessment technique

    Finally, the question boils down to which assessment technique is the best. The answer will depend on what role or roles an organisation is trying to fill. That will decide the job skills as well as the soft skills required. HirePro assessment offers a customisable bouquet of tools that can be effectively used for any domain, role or industry vertical. The tools include assessment of aptitude, technical skills, function-specific skills and behavioural traits.

    Using many assessment tests is not always the best process to follow. In fact, too many stages of selection can drive away some of the best candidates. It will help to keep in mind that unless there’s a direct science linking an assessment technique to job performance, or a pertinent skill, it is best not to use the technique. There are plenty of others to choose from.