It has always been difficult for decision-makers to decide who to hire. Pre-hire assessments can help HR and talent acquisition (TA) organizations better match candidates to roles. But how do you look at pre-hire assessments to ensure a perfect hire yet maintain validity and fairness? Because employing the right people will eventually have a direct impact on the revenues.
The Perfect Hiring and Pre-Hire Assessments: A Guide for an Exemplary and Unbiased Process webinar brought together a panel of experts to explore this topic:
- Fred Rafilson, Chief I/O Psychologist at Talview
- David Nason, Co-Founder at HireBrain
- Josh Allen, Director of Global Selection and Assessment Strategy at Walmart.
During the 45-minute webinar, they discussed the techniques of perfect hiring and pre-hire assessments to determine and see the skills, abilities, traits, and experience required for a successful job. Also, they are ensuring bias-free hiring by promoting transparency and the operationalization of fairness in assessment tests and the recruitment process.
Many questions were asked and we summarized the key points from the webinar below. You can also watch the entire Perfect Hiring and Pre-Hire Assessments webinar on-demand and skip to these parts of the discussion:
- 00:00 - 04:44 Introductions
- 05:07 – Ensuring assessment validity and fairness during the hiring process
- 07:23 – What tips do you have for teams to defining job analysis for roles?
- 11:28 – How to get buy-in from stakeholders?
- 15:28 – What are points to keep in mind regarding EEOC?
- 19:18 – What assessment is suitable for you?
- 21:47 – When should an assessment be administered?
- 26:30 – How to engage candidates in the process?
- 35:10 – How do assessments speed up the hiring process?
- 39:50 – How long or short should a test be?
- 41:10 – Legal liability about using an assessment created by your hiring manager
- 45:15 – If you don’t have a statistically relevant sample size, how do you approach executive-level assessments?
- 49:10 - When do you need to revamp your assessment process?
- 51:30 – How are the priorities of TA and talent assessments shared?
- 54:40 – Are there any assessments that forecast that a candidate and hiring manager will work well together?
“Rely on the data. Assessments is one of the few areas in HR where you can show their effectiveness with data.” - Dr. Josh Allen, Director of Global Selection and Assessment Strategy at Walmart
The Hiring Process - Ensuring Assessment Validity and Fairness
Dr. Rafilson kicked off the discussion by highlighting how tests and selection procedures are used. The goal is confirming that the tests are measuring job constructs that are “necessary to perform the essential tasks of the job” explained Dr. Rafilson. This requires a good job analysis as well as looking at post hire analysis – did the test predict the job performance that would make those scores accurate. That is job validity.
“Make sure the tests are developed using a good methodology and then make sure the tests are examined once they are being administered to ensure they are acting in a way that they’re fair.” - Dr. Fred Rafilson, Chief I/O Psychologist, Talview
When discussing fairness, this is about are the tests consistent regardless of demographics. Then do many tests to assess whether there are differences based on different groups or segmentation.
There are two points to consider according to Dr. Rafilson, “Make sure the tests are developed using a good methodology and then make sure the tests are examined once they are being administered to ensure they are acting in a way that they’re fair for everyone.”
How should job analysis be defined and which assessment is best for your organization?
When asked about how to define job roles, Nason highlighted a process of looking at “performance, engagement, and satisfaction.” This requires taking a step back from the job description and starting with what are the expected outcomes of the role over time.
This better defines the skills or competencies requires vs a “fantastical idea” of what the “right person” would be for that role. By looking at what they must do in the role and environment helps define the characteristics for success and then define the assessment based on those actual expectations.
Dr. Allen added that the most crucial point in starting any assessment is to understand the job first, and then only job analysis can be done.
Another factor is bringing in business stakeholders into the process. They will provide insight into the business problem and pain point which will help in understanding what the best solution will be. Furthermore, they have more understanding of the assessment’s role and purpose when evaluating potential candidates in the process.
How to engage candidates in the hiring process?
“This goes back to your hiring branding. Recruitment branding. And how you’re engaging with the candidate marketplace from the beginning.” - Mr. David Nason, Co-Founder at HireBrain
Not only is a fair and consistent process critical in hiring for candidates, but also how an organization is branded and engaged with candidates in the marketplace. With this, Nason explained that candidates who desire to work for that that company, they will be more committed to taking an assessment or following the hiring process to the end.
Dr. Rafilson added that realistic job previews about the organization and job roles give candidates insight about the company, culture, and team. While some potential applicants may determine this isn’t a right fit, other candidates will be more engaged in the process.
Conclusion: Pre-Hire Assessments Support and Accelerate the Hiring Process
“People are dynamic. And the way that assessment scoring should work is dynamic.” Dr. Josh Allen, Director of Global Selection and Assessment Strategy at Walmart
When designed for the job role (validity) and fairness (bias-free), pre-hire assessments can and do support and accelerate the hiring process. What’s key is aligning with your organization’s business leaders and hiring managers on the assessment process, goals, and expectations.
From a candidate perspective, HR and TA leaders must incorporate a communications strategy to build trust and engagement with candidates.
In the end, Dr. Allen summarizes is well, “People are dynamic. And the way that assessment scoring should work is dynamic.”