Employers & Job-Seekers: Why Assessments Should Be Part of Your Job Search

Assessment: an instrument that evaluates someone’s knowledge, experience, ability, perspective, belief, preferences, or views about something.

One could argue that the entire talent selection process is a series of assessments, from assessing the qualities and characteristics of the ideal candidate to interviewing candidates to assessing who is the best fit among the finalists. Whether you are a job seeker or an employer/recruiter, using assessments effectively increases your chances of making consistently excellent choices about career and employment decisions.

Three Types of Assessments in a Job Search

Whether taken online or via paper-and-pencil, there are three primary types of assessments that are typically associated with a job or career search:

1. A behavioral assessment – measures someone’s behavioral preferences as they relate to working with others in a team or someone’s effective and ineffective work environments.

2. A vocational interest assessment – measures an individual’s interests and preferred environments in order to find jobs and careers that are likely ones which offer high personal and professional fulfillment.

3. A knowledge-based assessment – measures what someone knows or understands about a specific topic or comprehends about the proper use of skills and abilities, such as an assessment that measures someone’s selling or language skills aptitude and knowledge.

Assessments for Job Seekers

These assessments can help clarify a job seeker’s career path options, and help identify and close knowledge gaps that could otherwise be a barrier to forward progress in a search. By using assessments early in the search process, a job seeker can save hundreds of hours of frustration searching for the wrong career or using the wrong search methods. At stake for the job seeker are critical aspects such as career happiness and lifetime earnings potential. Here are our recommended assessments for job seekers:

1. Best behavioral assessmentsDiSC and Myers-Briggs are two highly effective assessments to help people understand themselves better. Overlaying one’s natural strengths and preferences with potential career opportunities is a great way for job seekers to use behavioral assessments.

2. Best vocational interest assessmentsKuder, Strong, and Campbell are three well-established instruments that identify industries and positions that best fit based on personal interests and preferences. These are most effectively utilized when beginning a career search at the conclusion of one’s formal education or military service, or whenever considering a change in careers

3. Best knowledge-based assessments – In order to conduct an effective career search, begin by understanding what you do and do not know about the current and emerging best practices of a job search with GEPA (for college students and recent grads) and JSRA (for experienced professionals and skilled workers). Both assessments include a practical career search guide that covers 1,840 career and job search best practices.

Assessments for Employers

Hiring managers, recruiters and HR staff can significantly improve the quality of their hires and save considerable time in the hiring process by using assessments to augment their selection processes. Assessments can help employers and recruiters learn if a candidate will be a good cultural or team fit, or has the aptitude for specific work, or possesses a complementary knowledge and skill set necessary for success in the role. Respected sources such as payroll giant ADP, technology advisory firm Dice, and inc Magazine estimate the cost of a bad hire at $25,000 to $500,000 per hire. Thus assessments become an extremely low cost but highly effective method of learning more about a candidate to make consistently better hiring choices. Here are our recommended best-in-breed assessments:

1. Best behavioral assessments – DiSC can help identify how well someone fits within a particular team of people, as well as accelerate their onboarding if hired. We prefer Myers-Briggs to DiSC for positions in the behavioral sciences. Teamability from the Gabriel Institute can help identify how well someone will thrive in the employer’s culture and how team-oriented they are

2. Best vocational interest assessments – none are applicable here.

3. Best knowledge-based assessments – Depending on the industry, consider the wealth of assessments available to measure specific knowledge and skills. For example, when staffing sales positions, the B2B Sales Essentials Assessment measures what someone knows about B2B selling best practices, while the Retail Sales Essentials Assessment measures eight retail sales competences. The Leatherman Leadership Questionnaire is a highly respected instrument that measures someone’s knowledge of 27 critical leadership and management task areas. PAN Testing offers a variety of industry-specific assessments, such as are applicable to mechanical skills, healthcare, engineering, food service, IT, and manufacturing.

While the results of a single assessment should not be used as the sole criteria for making a career or hire decision, assessments do serve a valuable role in helping both job seekers and employers to make consistently better choices.

Boyer Management Group works with universities, employers and job seekers alike to help them become more successful. For employers, we offer world-class assessments, talent acquisition and onboarding tools and programs. For job seekers, we offer the world’s finest assessments to measure an individual’s knowledge and awareness of current and emerging best practices in conducting an effective career search, selling, delivering customer service, leadership, and behavioral fit. To find out more, please visit us at info@boyermanagement.com, or call us at 215-942-0982.

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