It’s relatively straightforward to identify candidates with the right technical skills and experience but it’s much harder to find out if they have the right personality and mix of soft skills to do the job effectively. Ask anyone who has had a difficult boss or team member – personality and soft skills can be make or break when it comes to performance.
Firms generally put a great deal of effort into their interview process, identifying the technical skills required, preparing candidate questions and possibly even setting up scenarios. Of course these are all important and helpful elements of the selection process, but they don’t provide real insights into personality. And this is why a significant proportion of recruitments are unsuccessful – because in the time available, candidates choose which aspects of their personality they are going to reveal.
A competency-based approach to recruitment and selection, combined with the use of the right psychometric test provides tremendous insight into your candidates’ suitability for the role. And let’s deal with Myer-Briggs straight away; it’s one of my favourite psychometric tests but it’s a definite no-no for recruitment. Please contact me If you would like to know more on this.
So, what would the process involve? Firstly you need to identify and rank the competencies required for the role. I suggest using an existing competency model; there’s no real need to re-invent the wheel. I would emphasise the importance of “ranking” rather than “categorising” as the latter approach tends to put most of the competencies into the essential or desirable category. Then do your first interviews with the competencies in mind.
Psychometric testing is done online for candidates selected for a second interview. My preference is to use either 16pf or OPQ32 combined with a competency report. I then provide my clients with an interpretation of these reports and generate some interview questions to make it easier for them to explore competencies and the significant aspects of candidates’ personality.
And the final stage, post-interview, is to provide candidates with feedback on their psychometric test – which, sadly, is all too often over-looked.