Behavior testing in recruitment: What is it, and what are its advantages?

behavior testing in recruitment
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Is it possible to determine how a candidate’s behavior and traits will affect their job performance? If you’re an HR professional, finding a method that will enable you to do this can be difficult.

The challenge is that many candidate reviewing methods don’t get to the crux of how your applicants’ behavior affects how they act in a work environment. Often, their behavior remains hidden until you hire them and they start working on projects in your organization.

But there’s one method that can help you: Behavior testing in recruitment with personality and culture tests like Jung's 16 personalities test will ensure you learn all about your candidates’ traits before hiring them.

Read on to learn about behavior testing, its advantages and disadvantages,  and several tests you can use in your recruitment process.

What is behavior testing?

Behavior testing is a systematic, in-depth study of an individual’s behavior. This process involves observing and assessing behavior through specific methods, such as conducting interviews and using modern digital tools. You can think of them as psychological tools for observing, explaining, and predicting behavior.

Although medical and educational experts use behavior testing, this method also exists in the recruitment world; you can use it to assess candidates’ competencies before hiring them for a role. You can also use behavioral testing to understand the motivation or causes of certain candidate behaviors and how applicants make decisions.

Why are behavior tests important for recruitment?

Behavioral tests are critical to the recruitment process because they help you review a candidate’s behavioral core competencies and determine whether they align with your company culture.

They can also contribute to more efficient workforce organization and planning by enabling you to assess your applicants’ traits, methods for taking action, and knowledge.

What are the two types of behavioral assessments?

The two main types of behavioral assessments are those for recruitment and those for learning and development. Let’s look at these types of behavioral assessments in more detail.

The two types of behavioral assessments

Behavioral assessments for recruitment purposes

Behavioral assessments for recruitment are the best tool for not only screening and shortlisting candidates based on their behavior and attitude but also determining whether their values and preferences align with your business.

They’re ideal for recruitment since they give you a detailed and accurate view of your applicants’ traits before you make a hiring decision.

Behavioral assessments augment the knowledge you gain about your candidate during a behavioral interview and are the optimal tool to replace resume screening. 

Behavioral assessments for learning and development

Behavioral assessments can also be an excellent method to review your employees’ values and help them work toward their career goals. With a behavioral assessment for learning and development, you can find out more about employees’ behavioral traits and factor them in when discussing career progression.

For example, suppose you notice a team member has the right motivation for your company but lacks the behavioral traits of a leader according to a behavioral assessment. In that case, you can create a training program to help your employee develop leadership traits.

Behavior tests you can use in your recruitment process

behavior tests you can use in your recruitment process

TestGorilla offers several personality and behavior tests you can incorporate into your hiring process. These include the following: 

1. 16 Personalities test

The 16 Personalities test is based on the work of Carl Jung and reveals a candidate’s sources of motivation and energy and how they process information. It also informs you about someone’s likes and dislikes, fears, abilities, and aspirations. 

The test takes an introspective approach, asking candidates a series of questions about their own perceptions of themselves. Their answers will give you insights into their inner world, enabling you to get to know them better.

2. Big 5 (OCEAN) test

The Big 5 (OCEAN) test evaluates five dimensions of personality: openness, conscientiousness, extroversion, agreeableness, and emotional stability. 

The test is based on the five-factor model, which defines five overarching personality traits. Each personality trait sits on a spectrum. A person can be efficient and organized or easygoing and extravagant, open to experiences or overly cautious, energetic or solitary, and so on. 

The results indicate the kind of person the candidate is and what to expect from them in the long run if they are hired. 

3. Enneagram test

The Enneagram test maps out nine different personalities that describe core belief systems and worldviews. To help you visualize these beliefs, it places candidates on a nine-pointed diagram called an Enneagram. 

Again, this assessment reveals someone’s personality traits, how they interact with others, and how they would act in a professional setting. The results of the test describe a person’s strengths and the challenges they might face. 

You can use these results to ask specific questions that relate to the candidate’s worldview, strengths, and areas of improvement.  

4. Culture Add test

The Culture Add test will help you find people whose values match those of your organization. It will enable you to learn more about candidates’ belief systems, mode of operation, and behavior in a team.

Having a strong culture is an essential building block of every company, so hiring people who can add to that culture is critical.

This test will give you a better understanding of what drives a candidate to do their job, which indicates whether they’re the right person for your business. 

5 advantages of testing behavior

Testing behavior will help you make better hiring decisions by showing you a candidate’s potential to develop, grow, and work well in a team. Here are five benefits of introducing behavior testing into your hiring process: 

1. Get a sense of a candidate’s personality

By testing behavior, you can get an accurate picture of a candidate’s personality. Though people do change and grow over time, their core personality traits tend to stay the same throughout their lifetimes. Therefore, their results on a behavior test can accurately reveal how they would act in a specific situation. 

For example, someone may write on their resume that they work well under pressure, but this doesn’t appear to be true when you put them in an actual stressful situation.

However, using behavior testing to learn about their worldview and how they would react to certain situations can give you a more accurate view of whether they actually have this ability. 

Similarly, if the results of a behavior test show that a candidate is goal oriented and focused on their tasks, these traits will likely be reflected in their actual job performance. Therefore, the results of these tests will help you understand these small details about candidates and find a good match for your business. 

2. Predict an employee’s performance 

Relying on what someone has written on their resume to predict their future job performance isn’t recommended since it’s possible for them to exaggerate or lie about their past experience.

One study found that 55% of Americans have lied about their personal information, skills, experience, or references in their resumes at least once.

That’s why using pre-employment testing in your hiring process is vital.

However, only using behavior testing won’t give you a complete view of how someone will perform on the job. Studies have shown that these tests can’t fully predict job performance on their own.

Therefore, you should combine them with role-specific skills tests and situational judgment assessments to assess candidates comprehensively. Only then can you be sure that a candidate is the right person for the job. 

3. Ensure objectivity in hiring 

Even if hiring teams have the best intentions and a high level of professionalism, hiring bias can be a real issue. Someone’s race, gender, age, and looks can sway an interviewer in one direction or another when making a hiring decision. 

For example, studies have shown that applicants with White-sounding names received 50% more callbacks than those with African American-sounding names.

Following a standardized behavior assessment process enables you to compare candidates’ answers, making the process more objective.  

4. Make decisions based on data and facts

Behavior tests are created by psychologists and data scientists, who compile large amounts of data on behavior and form questions based on that information. You can rest assured that these tests are backed by science and facts.  

By asking all candidates to complete a behavior assessment, you will have enough information to make a hiring decision based on the test results rather than your own intuition. 

5. Customize tests to your recruitment needs

Many pre-employment tests can be customized to suit your business and open role. This means that you can add specific questions that aren’t covered in standard tests. 

With TestGorilla, you can customize aspects of your assessment. For example, you can add custom questions to tailor it to your company or position. 

6. Assess candidates quickly

Recent advances in behavioral tests can greatly reduce time spent on administration and processing.

By using certain behavioral tests, such as our Big 5 (OCEAN) test, you can cut administrative times by 50% to 75%. This can reduce your time-to-hire and help you focus on the most suitable individuals who have behavioral traits that match your business.

Disadvantages of testing behavior

Although the benefits of testing behavior outweigh its disadvantages, these tests do come with limitations. 

  • Behavior tests don’t give the full picture about a candidate, so you shouldn’t rely solely on them to assess applicants

  • While taking the test, a candidate might be nervous and give answers that negatively affect their results

  • On the other hand, a candidate might give false answers based on their research into your company to create a more positive impression

As mentioned, to counter these limitations, you should combine behavior tests with other assessment methods to take the guessing game out of the equation. 

In addition, even if someone doesn’t possess the desired skills and traits but shows potential, they can learn a lot on the job and develop their character traits and skills. As the hiring manager, this is where you need to use your understanding of the business to make a hiring decision that will benefit the organization in the long run. 

How can you find out if a behavioral assessment is reliable?

The best way to determine if a behavioral assessment is reliable is to consider whether it has been crafted by experts and produces reliable results. The best behavioral assessments are backed by science and provide dependable and consistent data.

At TestGorilla, our behavioral assessments yield accurate results and are based on scientific research.

TestGorilla Quality control

Use our behavioral tests to find the most suitable talent for your team

If you’ve decided to reap the advantages of behavior testing and are looking for the best behavioral tests to complete your hiring process, TestGorilla is where you’ll find them. We have several behavioral tests to help you learn about your applicants’ personalities, traits, and behavior before you hire them.

Remember, you can shorten your time-to-hire metrics, find and shortlist candidates whose values fit your organization’s values, and train existing employees simply by using a behavioral test.

Visit our test library to find behavior tests, such as the Big 5 (OCEAN) test, and hire suitable candidates with minimal effort.

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