Psychometric Testing, the Good the Bad and the Necessary

12 Dec 2019
By Hannah Cummuskey
psychometric testing

You are well on your way to securing your dream job. Your CV is impressive, you nailed the interview and the next step is psychometric testing. As you tackle an impossibly long list of questions and start to second guess your answers, it can be easy for your mind to start to drift.

I know mine did. I couldn’t help thinking, what the hell does this have to do with my job? How much information could possibly be gained from a list of multiple-choice questions?

Having gone through Acacia’s rigorous recruitment process myself, I completely understand how daunting or unnecessary the testing can appear to candidates.

However, I can testify that receiving feedback on my own eerily accurate report was pretty humbling.

Since starting with Acacia, I have seen firsthand how these tests create a better, more objective recruitment process.

It all seems like a lot of effort. Why bother?

If you have not come across it before, psychometric testing is a series of standardised tests that measure a candidate’s cognitive thinking ability and behavioural style.

They help us assess how you, the candidate, will fit with an organisation’s culture and whether your abilities will help you excel in a particular role. Used alongside structured interviews and reference checks, these tests help us to make accurate predictions about your future performance in a role.

They also help to eliminate unavoidable human bias, providing a standardised, measurable and objective way to assess candidate fit.

How to ace your test

I am sorry to say there is no secret trick to help you nail it.

When it comes to personality profiling there are no right or wrong answers. However, certain characteristics may align better with the requirements or work environment for a particular role. 

Avoid trying to ‘trick the test’. If you try to present yourself how you would like to be seen, rather than as you are, you risk profiling as dishonest.

To prepare, get a good night’s sleep and enter the test rested. Take the test somewhere quiet, without distractions and allow yourself plenty of time.

What is different about Acacia’s approach?

We don’t rely on system generated or generic reports to analyse your fit.

We work with a seriously top-notch Organisational Psychologist with decades of experience in the resources sector.

Prepared with a thorough understanding of the requirements of the role, he evaluates your potential success based on your results. The result is an individually written report that informs the hiring manager of your key strengths and the kind of work environment that brings out your best.

Any areas of concern that are flagged in the report are checked with your references to see if they’ve impacted your performance in the past.

These ‘red flags’ are nothing to be afraid of and they are not going to rule you out of a role.

Instead, it gives your new employer a guide as to what areas you may need some extra coaching in.

We all have weaknesses but we need to understand what they are before we can improve, both professionally and personally.

So you got the job, now what?

By the end of our assessment process, we have come to understand what drives you, what brings out your best performance and what can get in the way. With almost 90% of employees deciding whether to stay or go within the first month, it's imperative we have this information upfront.

While you won't receive a copy of the physical report, we can organise a phone call for you with the Psychologist to discuss your results directly.

I strongly encourage all candidates to take us up on the opportunity. It provides valuable insight into how you operate and how to best harness your strengths and weaknesses to move forward. It was honestly one of the most fascinating conversations I have had, and unnervingly accurate.

Next time you're asked to take a psychometric assessment, take comfort knowing that it is designed to help align you with your dream job.

If you are thinking about taking the next step in your career then please get in touch at hannah@acaciaintl.com

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