7 Signs You Need Pre-Employment Testing

Hiring is high stakes. The hiring decisions you make can have wide-reaching effects on your entire organization, which is why it’s so important to make smarter, more informed hiring decisions every time.

Pre-employment tests, like cognitive aptitude or personality tests, are one way to achieve that goal. According to a recent survey of employers that use pre-employment tests, 97% said that one of the key benefits of testing was better quality of hire, and that’s exactly what assessments are designed to achieve, by identifying the qualities that predict long-term job success. But how do you know if your hiring process can benefit from testing your candidates in the hiring process? Here are 7 signs that you could benefit from pre-employment testing:

1. You’ve made a few too many bad hires

Anyone in a position of hiring has made a mistake before, but no matter how many times it happens, it still stings. The cost of a bad hire is no small thing – estimates place the average cost of a bad hiring decision at about 30% of the employee’s first-year salary. Even worse is the truly toxic hire, the effects of which can reverberate across the entire organization. Experienced hiring managers know that bad hires are inevitable, but there are ways to reduce your odds of making a bad hire by incorporating hiring criteria that are more predictive of job performance. Pre-employment tests are one of the most predictive factors of job success, significantly more predictive than resumes and interviews. When used in conjunction with these traditional hiring factors, pre-employment tests help you make more informed, and more predictive, hiring decisions. It’s not about magically hiring the right person every time; it’s about increasing your batting average.

2. You want to improve your team’s performance

If the key benefit of testing is to improve quality of hire, than it follows that pre-employment tests help you drive improvements in your team’s performance. Pre-employment tests measure the qualities that lead to success in a variety of different roles. From critical thinking and problem solving, to personality fit for certain positions, pre-employment tests are scientifically validated to predict performance, driving tangible outcomes in your performance metrics.

3. You’re short on time, but still want quality candidates

This is one of the most common dilemmas in HR – balancing the need to hire quickly with the need to hire for quality. Pre-employment tests are uniquely positioned to alleviate this problem. They help you identify key indicators of success quickly, enabling you to prioritize which candidates you want to move to the next stage of the process. By drilling down to those core predictive qualities, testing helps to surface your best candidates without slowing down the hiring process.

4. Your company is growing fast

Speaking of hiring quickly, if your company is growing fast, you must be doing something right! But speeding up the hiring process can lead to a drop in quality of hire, which no burgeoning company wants. Pre-employment tests help fast-growing companies maintain (and even improve) the quality of hire that helped them grow in the first place.

5. You have too many applicants

It’s hard to keep your hiring process efficient if you’re overwhelmed by the sheer number of applicants per job opening. Pre-employment tests can help you prioritize your applicant pool, especially if you administer tests up front in the process. Even better, using tests up front can help you reduce some of the unconscious bias that might influence your early hiring decisions, helping you stay objective and focused on the goal, which ultimately is to find the best candidate for the job at hand.

6. You have too few great candidates

The hiring market is extremely competitive, and more and more employers are having a hard time finding the right candidates with the right experience. Whether it’s the fault of the skills gap or employers are just being too picky, pre-employment tests can play a part in identifying great candidates that you may have overlooked based on their resumes alone. Because the qualities that pre-employment tests measure are so core to job performance, you may want to give a candidate a second look if they ace the tests, even if their experience or skill set isn’t the perfect fit.

7. You want to reduce unconscious bias

Unconscious bias is an unfortunate part of the hiring process, and no one is immune to biased thinking. One way to combat this is by incorporating more objective hiring factors that provide a signal of potential beyond human intuition. Pre-employment tests provide a critically unbiased and scientifically objective perspective that can help you see a candidate in a more holistic way.


Of course, we don’t believe that you necessarily need to experience any of these problems to “need” pre-employment testing. Pre-employment tests strengthen your hiring decisions by providing an objective signal of talent, providing a fuller picture of each candidate’s potential. Pre-employment tests don’t make the hiring decision for you: they just strengthen it. And when so much is at stake for each hire that you make, pre-employment tests provide peace of mind that you’re making more informed hiring decisions every time.