How Software Companies Use Assessments for Organization-Wide Hiring

82% of organizations use some form of pre-employment assessment in the hiring process. Organizations across every industry have used assessments to hire for just about every job, from entry-level to executive. And the software industry is no exception.

However, at Criteria we’ve worked with countless software companies to help them adopt assessments into their hiring process, and one pattern sticks out. Some software companies tend to want to use assessments exclusively to hire sales-related roles: think sales executives and account executives, business development representatives, and customer success managers. These are all customer-facing roles that are tied to revenue-generating activities.

It makes sense to want to use assessments to hire these critical, people-centric roles. After all, we’ve seen some pretty remarkable results when assessments are used in the hiring process – like one digital media company who found that sales reps who passed the assessments generated 7x more revenue than those who didn’t.

Software companies tend to be data-driven, and when it comes to hiring salespeople, you can immediately see your hiring results playing out in the revenue numbers. This can be extremely gratifying from an ROI standpoint. However, assessments shouldn’t be reserved to just your sales candidates simply because the ROI is more obvious.

Revenue is just one of many success metrics you can achieve from making better hiring decisions. For example, assessments can help software companies improve retention, improve performance and productivity, and improve general quality of hire, leading to higher customer satisfaction with your product and services.

For this reason, we always recommend that software companies use assessments to hire for every type of role in the company. This includes members of your:

  • Product team: software developers, product managers, data scientists, UI/UX designers, QA specialists
  • Marketing team: digital marketing managers, content managers, product marketers, SEO specialists
  • Supporting and Operational Teams: finance analysts, HR managers, administrative assistants, operations managers, IT specialists

After all, we here at Criteria have direct experience. As a software company that develops assessment software to help companies hire, we use our own assessments to hire every member of our team. Different roles certainly call for different assessments. But by using our own assessments, we lay the groundwork to learn more about each and every candidate in an objective, fair, and data-driven way.

We work with many software organizations that successfully use assessments to hire roles beyond just sales. For example, one tech company used our cognitive aptitude test and our general personality assessment to predict success for 96 incoming software engineers. Ultimately they found that those who scored well on the two assessments performed 42% better than those who scored poorly on the assessments.

In this particular example, these two assessments worked well to predict the job success of the software engineers because the assessments were measuring critical skills that are generally applicable across roles. Cognitive aptitude, for example, is one of the best predictors of job performance out there, because it measures qualities such as critical thinking, problem solving, and the ability to learn and apply new information. These qualities are incredibly important within a fast-moving software company. For this reason, many software companies use cognitive aptitude assessments across every role within their organizations.

Software companies tend to be innovative, rapidly growing places to work, which makes tech an incredibly attractive industry for job applicants. Assessments help software companies identify the candidates who are most likely to succeed and adapt within tech and to excel within the company long-term.