Importance of Psychometric Assessments for Hiring


Importance of Psychometric Assessments for Hiring

The usual process of hiring an employee to work at a company is quite familiar. This old convention begins with the publishing of a job description to attract potential candidates, after which the pool of applicants is rigorously screened to single out qualifications and traits that would be helpful for the job. There may be a selection committee that determines the proficiency level and past experience of a candidate, after which the lucky worker is scouted and hired. But can one gauge the finer aspects of a candidate’s workstyle and ethic solely based off of an interview and screening process? The answer to that dilemma is a psychometric test.

What is a psychometric test?

Psychometrics is the field of social sciences concerned with the study of psychological measurement. It can be used to measure one’s knowledge, abilities, personality traits and other attributes. A psychometric test hence provides clarity about one’s cognitive ability and performance potential. It is an effective tool to help gauge whether one is suited for a certain job or task in the long-term and is a good predictor of one’s ability to be able to do a certain profession. It will thus make it easier to filter candidates for hiring based on the predicted quality of their work.

What all do psychometric tests measure?

i. Cognitive Ability: Psychometric tests systematically gauge the test-taker’s cognitive ability and ability to be able to learn new skills. In future as per World Economic Forum (WEF) report of 2020, Analytical Thinking; Active Learning; Complex problem-solving; Critical thinking & analysis are the top 4 skills that are required by 2025. These are the aspects that are captured effectively by cognitive ability test when used for pre-hiring screening by organizations.

ii. Behavioural Assessment: Psychometric behavioural tests measure a person’s congruity for a role by administering personality questionnaires to find out their core competencies and innate talents. We work best when we get opportunities at work to do most of the time stuff that comes naturally to us. Behavioral assessments helps us capture what comes naturally to a person. It helps sift innate talents from the acquired skills and knowledge. For example, for an accountant, having long attention span and eye for detail are innate talents. On the other hand, knowing how to balance the balance sheets and what are statutory laws regarding accounting fall in the domain of knowledge and skills. 

iii. Emotional Intelligence: Emotional Intelligence or Emotional Quotient (EQ) is an used to measure the inventory of skills a person has to deal with their own emotions and that of others. It also measures the awareness level of a person regarding one’s own emotions and those of others. Research has shown that EQ is far more important than IQ and is a much better predictor of success. EQ also directly impacts the aspects crucial for leadership such as impulse control, interpersonal communication, problem solving and stress management.

Advantages of Psychometric Tests

i. Objective analysis: The conventional interview process is vulnerable to bias due to subjectivity. An interviewer may rely on gut feelings that skew their preferences to a candidate who may not actually be the best fit for that job. Since psychometric tests offer a standardised alternative, they can almost be looked at as a scientific and objective lens through which to view a candidate’s abilities. They provide an easy way to measure some of the most overlooked traits that are nevertheless necessary in an employee, such as one’s communication style and interpersonal skills. They thus go beyond a surface-level read of the applicant based solely on the first impression or past experience.

ii. Convenient and quick choice: Since psychometric tests are standardised, they can be administered to a large pool of applicants for the job. While individually going through each and every employee through a tedious and long process such as the interview and screening can exhaust a lot of resources, a psychometric test is a great way to find out everyone’s potential at the first stage and filter out candidates that do not meet the requirements. The viability and flexibility of such an analysis also makes it easy to administer over other mediums, such as digitally.

iii. Role-based interpretation or job profile: It may be so that the first impression a candidate gives off is one of immense charisma or confidence, and it may later be found that are not as likeable or agreeable as once thought. It is also not necessary that the candidate from the best university or with the longest previous experience is the one most suitable to the job. If the candidate is applying to a managerial position, their ability to strategize, co-ordinate and direct a team is as important as their technical skills. A psychometric test will help measure some of the more quantifiable aspects of what would make a good employee.

What should an employer look for in a candidate?

To reap the most benefits out of a psychometric test, an employer should aim to get an objective view of the candidate that ultimately decides how suitable they are for the job. 

There is no acing a psychometric test. This means that you can neither fail nor succeed at a psychometric test, and the effect of a psychometric test on the candidate’s propensity for the job hinges on what job it is.

The job market is now entering into a new era where it is time to let go of old norms and start hiring smartly based on what the future needs. It is only natural that the hiring process also evolves with the times, and beginning to use psychometric tests is the surest way for employers to lead that evolution.

For more information of psychometric assessments and usage visit:

Written by 
Riti Aggarwal

Edited by
Vinaya Bansal


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