Objective recruitment: Part 2 - "According to our tests, you look like a douche"​

In the first article of this series I gave a short introduction to the subject “Objective Recruitment” - on what and why. In this second part, I will dig a bit deeper into one way of the how. What’s key when becoming objective is to base your decisions on measurable qualifications, rather than gut. One way of doing so - is to include personality tests in your recruitment processes. There are in fact great tools to use and what one could do is letting your team complete the tests before you actually start a recruitment process, in order to see how your future potential colleagues will fit into your team's personality matrix. It is, though, important to make sure you know how you want to use these tests, and when you will evaluate them during your recruitment process. --- Here is a short (but true) story of mine on the topic: I was, a couple of years back, in a recruitment process for a role I really hungered to get. Dressed up in a suit, went back to their offices three times over (sounds weird after 1 year in my living room) in order to meet different people at different stages of the process. When the interview parts were almost done, I was told that they wanted me to complete a couple of tests to assess my logical ability and my personality in order to match it with their teams. Said and done - completed the tests and went back for feedback. I was welcomed by hearing from my main point of contact at the potential employer of mine: “Jonatan - good thing you met us before you completed the personality test. Otherwise, we would most probably have rejected you given that you look like such a douche by the test results” May sound a bit harsh - but to be fair, I was neither surprised nor offended. I have completed a couple of these tests over the years, and by the look of it, I may appear as rather distanced than friendly - which apparently was not what my at the time, future employer, thought they were looking for in their new addition to the team. Is there a problem here? Not necessarily. If you are sure that the person behind the test results is a douchebag, and you are sure that you have no interest in signing a douchebag - I see no problem. The actual challenge is - that it will be hard for you to know if the candidate REALLY is a douchebag. But let’s say that you took our advice from part 1, and did decide on your measureable qualifications beforehand - and evaluated the candidate according to these, I would argue that what you did was right. The example I just gave is nothing more than an illustration of how it could go wrong. Let’s say that I would have been evaluated based on my test results before the interviews, they would never know if I actually was a douchebag or just seemed like one. So how to narrow this down - what’s the plan going forward?

1. Test & interview: Given that we don’t have tests good enough to rule out the interviews entirely (yet) I believe it’s of great importance that we both test and interview people during our recruitment processes. 2. Be clear in your communication: If you decide to reject a candidate only based on their test results, please make sure that this is clear to the candidates. 3. You’ll miss a few good ones: If you decide to reject a candidate only based on their test results, you can be sure that you’ll miss out on a few good matches - but on the other hand - it may be worth it. But - should we or should we not include tests? You should. Regardless of the company and what your recruitment process looks like, I think it’s of great importance to test - in order to learn about your team and how you can improve your future recruitment processes. Just make sure that you:

  • setup the requirements beforehand

  • evaluate the test results at the same stage for every candidate

  • stick to your requirements

--- And - are you really a douchebag? I hope not! But not my job to answer. I’ll just post my latest result in the header and you can find out for yourself. Want to know more on how we can help you improve the objectiveness? Setup your account today!