Organizations compete to hire the best talent. Many companies invest large amounts of money, time and resources into advertising and recruiting strategies to attract the best candidates. Yet, when it comes to assessing which candidates are likely to perform most effectively and make the most productive contributions, many companies use a poorly designed candidate assessment strategy, USA. These companies fail to use scientifically proven assessments to guide their talent selection decisions. Many validated talent assessments have been shown to result in significant productivity increases, cost savings, decreases in turnover and other important business outcomes that can translate into millions of dollars. These bottom-line financial results are obtained by using proven assessments to guide talent selection decisions. Designing a candidate assessment strategy, USA should begin with a review of the critical competencies identified through a comprehensive job analysis. Once you decide what competencies to assess, you need to determine how to structure the assessment process. What assessments will be used? In what order should the assessments be completed? How many candidates will be assessed? How much time does the assessment process take? What is the anticipated cost?

Job Analysis

Job analysis is the process of gathering and analyzing information about the content, job duties and the human requirements of a specific job. While Job Analysis data is usually collected from incumbents through interviews or surveys, the product of the analysis is a description of the job. The purpose of job analysis is to establish and document the job relatedness of a company’s employment procedures such as talent selection, training and performance appraisal.

Technology Platform

The technology platform is another factor to consider in designing the appropriate candidate assessment strategy, USA. Most talent assessments can be administered online today. Technology can overcome distance challenges and enable companies to reach and interview a larger population of candidates.


Assessment reliability refers to the consistency of scores obtained when the same candidate is re-evaluated with the same assessment or an equivalent form of the assessment. A good assessment minimizes random sources of error. For most pre-employment assessments, reliabilities above .70 are regarded as acceptable. According to the US Department of Labor, .90 and up is excellent, .80 to .89 is good, .70 to .79 is adequate and below .70 may have very limited uses. Reliability is important when deciding which assessment to use for a given purpose. The test manual should report details of reliability and how it was computed. Reliability is critically important because it places limits on validity.


Validity refers to the relationship between performance on an assessment and job performance. Validity is the most important factor to consider when deciding whether to use a particular assessment. If the assessment does not provide useful information about how an individual will perform on the job it has little or no value. There are different types of validity. The most common measure of predictive validity is a correlation or a validity coefficient. Validity coefficients for a single assessment rarely exceed .50. A validity coefficient of .30 or higher is generally considered useful for most circumstances. A Validity Coefficient of .21 to .35 is likely to be useful. A validity coefficient of .11 to .20 may be useful. A validity coefficient of .11 or lower is unlikely to be useful. When multiple candidate assessments are used, you can consider the combined validity of the assessments. To the extent the assessments measure different job-related factors (e.g., verbal reasoning ability, assertiveness, detail orientation) each assessment will provide unique information about the candidate’s ability to perform the job. Used together, the assessments can more accurately predict the applicant's job performance than either assessment used alone. The amount of predictive validity one assessment adds relative to another is often referred to as the incremental validity of the assessment.

Legal Considerations

Any assessment used to facilitate an employment decision (e.g., selection, promotion) can be open to claims of adverse impact based on subgroup differences. Adverse impact is a legal concept used to determine whether there is a substantially different passing rate between two groups on an assessment. Common groups compared are: race comparisons and gender comparisons. According to the 80% rule, adverse impact is not indicated as long as the ratio of the pass rates for two groups is 80% or higher.

Pilot Study (Prove it!)

A Blind Pilot Study that assesses High Performers and Low Performers can show how accurate (Predictive) your talent assessment will be. Don’t reveal which participants are high or low performers until all of the assessment scores have been generated. If the talent assessment solution can’t identify or classify your current high and low performers accurately it won’t be able to do it with your candidates either. A good candidate assessment will deliver about 75% accuracy in its predictions. In other words, 3 out of 4 new hires should be high performers.

Contact Us for assistance in designing your candidate assessment strategy, USA.

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