Challenges of pre-employment testing you might face in the hiring process 

Challenges of pre-employment testing you might face in the hiring process 

You remember the day you had an interview for the current job you are working now? Today that might not work, and the hiring process has become a bit more complicated. Pre-employment Testing has become a necessary part of the hiring process, and employers rely on it to eliminate inappropriate candidates.

However, there are some challenges with the process, and you would better know about it so to avoid them and get the best results of the pre-employment testing.

Southern Nevada Occupational Health Center (SNOHC) introduces you to the benefits of pre-employment testing, different variable tests, the challenges and tips you can use along the way.

What is Pre-employment Testing?

Pre-employment Testing is a combination of tests and screens to measure how appropriate a person is for this particular job position. The tests often evaluate applicants:

  • Skills
  • Intellect
  • Personality or characteristics

Employers might require a pre-employment test before they interview the applicant. The test could be a prerequisite to the interview stage.


Pre-employment testing benefits

There are different and various reasons for employers to use pre-employment testing. Some of them are as follows:


Speed up the employment process

The test narrows down the number of potential applicants for a job and gives an overview of the appropriate employee for the job. If there are lots of names to cross, the process eliminates many candidates naturally.


To analyze applicants’ skills and abilities

Paper application and interviews do not always determine whether an applicant can perform tasks or not. For instance, if the job requires standing on feet for a long time, physical testing determines applicants’ strength and stamina. A writing test determines whether the applicant has the basic knowledge of writing or not.


Raise the quality of interviews

The answer to some matters can not be found in a simple yes/no question. The data gathered through the tests enhance the interview and hiring process. Employers can monitor applicants:

  • Behavior
  • Job knowledge
  • Reaction,
  • The way they work,
  • Problems solving skills
  • Innovation and creativity
  • Software or language proficiency
  • Cooperation with colleagues
  • Emotional intelligence
  • ability to perform specific tasks
  • Honesty and Integrity


Objective assessment than other forms of evaluation

Examining recruits through interviews and resumes can be subjective and inappropriate to evaluate a true candidate. If the test is designed and carefully appropriately, it can lead to a more objective conclusion. They are valid and reliable and based on field observations.


Equality for everyone

Interviews and paper tests might be unfair. There is often no consensus to rate applicant answers, and personal understanding is preferred over fact in these interviews. Tests are standardized and the same for everyone. So you might not miss a great candidate through an unfair system.


Save time during the interview process.

Evaluating 20 features for each candidate can be extensive time-consuming. The process of pre-employment testing can eliminate unsuitable applicants easily and save you lots of precious time.


Decrease the costs of turnover

A possible employee who is found not appropriate will save time and costs. Consider the tedious task of not finding him/her suitable after six months of working and then the layout. The possible outcome a good recruiter could have for the company needs to be considered.


Different types of pre-employment tests

There are different types of pre-employment testing you can use. They each evaluate a different aspect of applicants’ features. Some of the tests you can use during the hiring process are as follows:


Job knowledge tests

Some argue that knowledge of the job is one of the essential parts of the hiring process. For example,e if the employer is hiring a teacher, he/she needs to know the material you have taught, the levels and diversity of children the applicant has worked with.

The expertise candidate received through previous work experiences can be evaluated in a productive way.


Personality Tests

Testing the personality of the candidates and deciding based on the findings is becoming increasingly popular among HR managers. The tests aim to answer:

  • whether the applicant feels comfortable in this job position.
  • The behavioral traits will help to progress in the job or not.


This type of test has no right or wrong answer. But the test evaluates to what extent the applicant fits the position. The employers can have an understanding that behavioral features match to some extent the position and the company culture.

Employers are particularly looking for five features among applicants. They have become popular and almost fit in any job position:

  • Agreeableness
  • Conscientiousness
  • Extroversion
  • Openness to experience
  • Stress tolerance


You could also apply Carl Jung’s personality types and predict the behavior of a character on this basis.


Cognitive ability tests

These tests evaluate applicants mental abilities that are connected to job performance:

  • Reasoning
  • Problem-solving
  • Verbal ability
  • Critical thinking
  • Learn, digest, and apply new information
  • Numerical Reasoning
  • Spatial reasoning
  • Attention to detail
  • Reading comprehension

They tend to be more accurate than interviews and job experiences in evaluating job performance. The purpose is to see the applicant is able to deal with problems in the new job position. Also, they can be more challenged than personality tests.


Integrity tests

Employers can assess the reliability of applicants through integrity tests. Also, they are the most objective teests a company can apply. Integrity shows the employee is a match for the company’s culture and can get along with the co-workers.

When overall reliability and rule-following are particularly important for employers, integrity tests are useful. They are most effective for entry-level positions.

But be careful when choosing the type of asked questions.

The other tests that you can include in a pre-employment test could be:

  • Emotional intelligence tests
  • Aptitude Tests
  • Language tests
  • Physical ability tests
  • Situational judgment
  • Skills Tests
  • Software skills
  • Drug and alcohol tests
  • Post offer physical exam

The tests you apply are up to the job position and your standards.


What are the Challenges of Pre-employment Testing?

The process of pre-employment testing is not an easy convenient one you can follow to get the best results. There are challenges and obstacles. You would better know them and try to minimize the advantages so you get the best results of the tests.


Inconsistency and unreliability

Despite the many benefits of pre-employment testing, they can be inconsistent and unreliable. These results can happen during the subjective assessments when evaluating personality traits.

The reason for these problems is that the test can be vague and unclear. Applicants might pick to lie and answer what they think the employer wants to hear during the process.

One good way to avoid this type of problem is to be more objective. Eliminate the types of questions that might lead to different interpretations from the applicants. Instead of general questions that can have a wide range of possible answers, you could be more specific.

The “Ideal Team Player” book by Patrick Lencioni recommends asking what the recruiter would do in a particular situation and then interpreting from the answer.


Establishing validity

False and inaccurate answers could end up with inaccurate results. It makes the results of the test invalid. For example, you ask the employer whether he/she has worked with “Adobe After Effects” or not. The yes answer might turn out that he/she has only passed a course on Udemy or Coursera and has never created motion graphics in life. You could end up hiring a beginner for the position while you need a professional.

This is why you need to be careful what exams you take from the applicants. The results of tests need to match job performance before deciding on the pre-employment test result.

One to avoid this problem is to design several different tests to evaluate applicants’ skills and abilities or a particular field. A personality exam could define whether the applicant fits your standards and requirements.


The tests are not diverse enough

The one challenge of pre-employment testing could be that they have a particular set of standards for applicants. So the employers might hire candidates with the same backgrounds, skills, and personalities. It could explain why employers tend to hire an applicant with a colleague or university certificate. Current pre-employment testing requires recruiters to have a university education related to the job offer.

Being more inclusive and breaking stereotypes can be the solution to this problem. You can focus on work experience rather than academic qualifications. You might find the perfect employee among the people you expect less from them.

It’s common among companies that do not find the appropriate employee to hire a few people who seem fit for the job. After working for a few months and receiving training, they show great progress and work well for the company. The gems are often found in a desert after long being under the sun.


Long time to complete the pre-employment tests

A pre-employment test saves you a lot of time in hiring applicants. But they can be long and tedious, and the potential applicants could leave the process. You could lose a substantial amount of appropriate candidates all along the way.

You can receive pre-employment testing benefits by making the process convenient and simple. This is the point you can consider online testing and take advantage of its benefits. You would better ensure that the tests can be completed in one hour the tops.

Of course, the applicant needs to be determined and work hard for a job position, but they might get tired on this day and skip your position. Humans are not the same every day and might be down some time.


Being relevant to the job

If you use ready-made pre-employment tests, they might be irrelevant to the vacancy or your company. The entire process could be inappropriate for you and the person you want to hire.

So you would better create a test designed and created for your needs. You can include specific questions, skills requirements, and the personalities you need.

For instance, if problem-solving is important to you, you can ask the applicant about the specific time he/she solved an issue during work experience.


Useful tips for using pre-employment tests

The following tips assist you in achieving the desired results from the pre-employment testing and ensuring the entire process is legally defensible:

  • Pick the right type of tests and make it clear in terms of validity and reliability
  • Make sure the laws meet all the national or state laws and regulations
  • Do research if purchasing made tests is possible from outside of the company
  • Avoid offensive or personal tests that applicant might be comfortable with
  • Relying entirely on tests is not a useful option
  • Remember the applicant is also evaluating your behavior and character
  • Keep the process short
  • Include competency-based questions
  • Reduce test anxiety
  • Give the recruiter enough time
  • Try not to make the process too long
  • Ensure the applicant understands why he/she is given the test
  • Keep Keep an eye on the diversity of your hiring decisions
  • Prepare a checklist of what you want from the applicant (Checklist manifesto by Atul Gawande)


Pre-employment drug testing Las Vegas

An essential part of pre-employment testing is the drug and alcohol test. If you can manage all the mentioned tests on this article yourself or hire someone to do it for you, you will never be able to do Pre-employment drug testing. You need special equipment and lab services to find out whether the candidate suffers from drug or alcohol issues or not.

Southern Nevada Occupational health Center (SNOHC) conducts the necessary medical tests you need to hire employers. Drug and alcohol tests, post-offer physical exams, auditory exams, fit for duty, and all the immunization and vaccination services are conducted in SNOHC.

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