This is going to be a cathartic post for me. There are few things, in my opinion, more useless and misleading than personality testing in the hiring process. Yet, inexplicably, we are seeing more and more clients trying to turn a mystic exercise into a scientific one. They…do…not…work. All you are doing is wasting your time, and money, on something that has little bearing on success.

Why shouldn’t you use personality testing in the hiring process?

In every meeting I have with hiring managers, it is universal that our clients want a loyal, hardworking, and committed individual to the role that we are hiring for. How does a personality test measure that? Further, we know in every role we have had as professionals there have been bumps in the road. No job, no manager, no company is perfect. How does a personality test measure your employee’s response to those challenges?

Personality tests cannot test for commitment

I can hear the proponents yelling that personality tests are important so you put traits in the position that lead to success. Except that they don’t. It just makes the hiring manager feel better. Until you can measure a candidate’s commitment to being successful, you really don’t have anything that is helpful or indicative of a good hire. Often times we see these tests pop us shortly after our client hires a business consultant as they try to control the processes of the business. But unfortunately, the candidates our clients hire are usually the same ones they would have hired in the first place. All they have done is made the hiring process more complex, convoluted, and risked losing their candidate.

So what should you do?

For me, I am not at all opposed to personality tests being used to better understand how to motivate and manage new employees. I think, if used correctly, you can better understand how to communicate effectively with the person that is now working for you. But I will say that I still believe the culture fit is a stronger indicator of success in an office. If you pull in a person who just fits naturally with your existing team, usually they will rise to the occasion and be successful in the role. We have seen time and again where a candidate has been turned down by a client based on their personality results, only to be hired by another client in a similar role and be a rock star.

Please do not allow personality tests to become a crutch in hiring for your business. They do not provide the information needed to help determine if the person will be a success in the role.  Let us help you with this process. We are in the market every day. We understand what our clients are looking for and what candidates want. Let us help you find the right person for your role.


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