Talent assessments have proven useful in identifying and hiring right-fit candidates, assessing existing skills and competencies among employees, resolving skills and staffing gaps, and supporting retention initiatives. Yet, despite their obvious and proven benefits across the talent journey, some HR and talent acquisition professionals may be hesitant to adopt assessments into their recruitment and workforce planning processes.
Incorporating assessments into the hiring process might be seen as a friction point for candidates, with the perception that the process is too long or challenging. From the talent acquisition perspective, the fear of adding friction to the process and potentially losing out on great candidates may deter talent teams from fully considering the benefits. It's a situation that has confronted talent teams for years.
Are you getting the most out of your talent assessments?
Types of talent assessments used today
Assessing talent is not a one-size-fits-all endeavor. Just as your company, roles, and candidates/employees are unique, so are the assessments needed to evaluate their skills, competencies, aptitudes, and personalities. There are three primary categories of talent assessments:
- Behavioral: These assessments take a closer look at a candidate’s behavioral tendencies and personality traits. Questions in this type of assessment may present a situation, task, action, or result, and ask the candidate to share how they would respond or handle that scenario, with specific examples. Other questions present a statement and ask the candidate to either agree or disagree that it describes them. Answers to these questions can indicate certain personality traits.
- Cognitive: These assessments evaluate a candidate’s mental processes and aptitudes, such as reasoning, perception, memory, and problem-solving. Questions in this type of assessment may include logic problems, math equations, reading comprehension, or spatial reasoning.
- Skills / knowledge: These assessments are targeted at a specific job, skill set, or career level (e.g., entry-level) to provide greater insight into a candidate’s skills and capabilities for the chosen job function.
Talent acquisition teams – in both the public and private sectors – are seeing the value of assessments and adopting them into their hiring and employee retention programs. For example, new legislation with the Chance to Compete Act aims to leverage skills-based assessments to improve federal hiring processes and secure more right-fit candidates in the most appropriate roles.
Among companies in the private sector, assessments are quickly rising in popularity and usefulness in both pre-hire and post-hire situations, allowing talent teams to more accurately assess candidates and predict job performance. Symphony Talent delivered about 1.5 million assessments in 2022, representing a notable increase from the previous year.
How talent assessments are incorporated into the talent journey
Talent assessments can (and should) be used throughout the talent journey, from candidate to employee. In the early stages of the hiring process, talent assessments can be used to gauge specific credentials, skills, and behaviors that can provide a unique and unbiased view into a potential candidate. This not only helps talent teams quickly and easily identify right-fit talent for open positions and predict job performance and culture fit, but it also provides candidates a greater understanding of the desired skills and competencies for the job and the value that the hiring team places in choosing who will be the best fit.
To avoid any unnecessary friction or assessment completion drop-offs, talent teams should prioritize infusing their employer brand and value proposition into the entire hiring process, including any assessments. This creates a seamless and consistent candidate experience through all touch points, helping to build stronger employer-candidate connections that lead to high-quality hires.
Beyond the initial hire, talent assessments allow talent teams to identify and resolve staffing and skills gaps, support career development opportunities, and provide data-backed recommendations to improve workforce management and performance.
Assessing the ROI of talent assessments
Incorporating assessments into your recruitment and workforce planning process is a strategic business decision that will not only affect talent teams, but also the financial performance and reputation of your company.
To gauge the ROI your team can expect by adding assessments into your hiring and employee retention processes, consider the following example of inputs and outputs:
|Investment||Return / Benefits|
|Candidate time to complete assessment:||Faster time-to-fill|
|Talent professional time to administer||Greater employee engagement and culture fit|
|Financial investment in assessment software||More accurate prediction of job performance|
|Decreased hiring costs|
The investment in time and effort for assessments are minimal for both candidates and talent team members, while the return can be tremendous. Symphony Talent assessments, powered by SkillCheck, are easily administered, with clear guidance and an easy-to-use interface, removing much of the perceived friction and creating a seamless experience that delivers results. And, with a robust library available, Symphony Talent clients have even greater flexibility and can truly customize their assessment experience for any number of roles or career levels.
When talent assessments are implemented correctly and supported with a clear and consistent brand story they can provide a tremendous value to both individuals and their respective employers. Talent assessments are a proven, science-backed method for evaluating candidates and employees to drive better performance, engagement, and retention. Learn more about how assessments can integrate into your talent acquisition processes by visiting Symphony Talent Assessments.