The best candidates are not hired into roles by accident. “A Player” talent is found on purpose by utilizing to a data-driven objective process for identifying and selecting the individuals who will succeed in the role.

As the head of HR, your CEO and peers depend on you to identify high-quality candidates in a timely manner. But no matter how many candidates you supply for every opening, most companies are overly dependent upon a traditional interview process to vet each candidate. The interview team asks all the right questions but remains uncertain about which answers identify the best person to hire. To help them navigate this challenge and to objectively identify the best candidates for your company, you should focus your attention on the digital pre-hire assessments to help hiring managers accurately select “A Player” talent.


Download our Job Behavior Analysis Tool to define the outcomes and critical behaviors that will drive success in the roles you need.


What Are Pre-Hire Assessments?


A pre-hire assessment is any tool, survey, or methodology that candidates complete as part of the job application process. The structure of the process allows each candidate to be evaluated objectively and matched without bias to the core components of the job requirements.


Making the Case for Pre-Hire Assessments:


  • Best-in-Class companies recognize the value. Based on a 2017 Aberdeen research report, 85% of best-in-class organizations are more likely to utilize assessments in the pre-hire stage, driving a constant information flow throughout the hiring process.


  • Pre-hire assessments lead to greater satisfaction. Aberdeen found that hiring managers at best-in-class companies were 36% more likely than all others to be satisfied with their new hires when pre-hire assessments were used in vetting and hiring.


  • A bad hiring decision can be costly. According to the U.S. Department of Labor, the average cost for each bad hire can equal 30 percent of that individual’s annual earnings. Link Humans, an employer branding agency in London, estimates that the cost of recruiting, hiring, and onboarding a new employee can be as much as $240,000.


What Difference Does an Assessment Process Make?


  • Accuracy. Does the candidate fit the role? Will the role enable them to play to their strengths? Pre-hire assessments help predict a candidate’s success in the role by applying algorithms to response data. Matching candidate strengths to the necessary skills and competencies required for the role increases the likelihood that “A Players” are drawn further into the selection process.


  • Objectivity. It’s easy for people to be impressed by a candidate’s credentials. If they have an impressive degree or worked for a top-tier brand it is common for the interview team to be biased by those factors. Pre-hire assessments help maintain an objective point of view across the pool of candidates, advancing the right people through the process based on the imperative qualities needed for A player performance in the role.


  • Pre-hire assessments comply with professional and regulatory guidelines, so you can always be sure that candidates are being treated fairly and consistently.


Utilizing a data-driven process to select the right candidates increases the odds that you will identify “A Player” talent who will be satisfied in their position. And finding “A Players” can have a monumental impact on your organization. As Steve Jobs once said, “A small team of A+ players can run circles around a giant team of B and C players.”


What Role Does a Pre-Hire Assessment Play in the Process?


Using pre-hire assessments is a best practice. According to Harvard Business Review, 76% of organization with more than 100 employees use assessments for external hiring. But fewer companies orient their assessment processes to the specific characteristics of the role they are looking to fill.


Without tailoring the methodology for each role, the pre-hire assessment loses its impact. A properly oriented and validated pre-hire assessment will uncover aspects of each candidate that are difficult to see on a resume or during an interview. Things like intrinsic motivations, limitations, performance potential, and behavioral tendencies become apparent through the assessment process enabling the hiring team to select the candidate that is going to be successful in the role.


When the assessment and the specific role characteristics are properly aligned, candidates and hiring managers are more satisfied with the recruiting process. This leads to better candidate selection, improved quality of hire, and increased employee retention.


Make Sure Your Assessments Are on Purpose


To orient the assessment to the role, begin by documenting the specific success factors that are required for success in the role. “A Players” will be the ones who provide behavioral or psychometric answers that align with the success factors you have identified.


Here are two tools to get you started:


  1. Click here for a Job Behavior Analysis template that you can use to define the outcomes and critical behaviors that will drive success in the role.


  2. Click here for an example of how to construct an “A-Player” scorecard.


Pre-hire assessments provide an unbiased perspective into the candidate pool and allow the hiring manager to have the confidence they need to make a solid hiring decision. Utilizing these tools increases consistency and accuracy of the hiring process and improves your ability to attract and hire “A Player” talent to your open positions.



Additional Resources


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