What is a Psychometric Test?

On the face of it, a psychometric test is not unlike any other exam. They are completed under set conditions on a computer or sheet of paper and a score is given in return. However, rather than testing a specific subject or scrutinising knowledge, these tests look to analyse traits, attitudes and aptitudes.

An introduction to psychometrics

Psychometrics is a scientific field focused on measuring the psychological. The specially designed tests give people the opportunity to learn more about the motivations behind certain behaviours and can provide a genuine insight into overall aptitude, especially in the workplace.

Psychometric tests are a means to investigating and evaluating the human mind.

Typically presented in the form of multiple choice questions and answers, they are designed to identify characteristics and abilities quickly and objectively. They can be concentrated on deciphering ability or personality, with altering circumstances for either. World famous examples of assessments include the Myers-Briggs personality types and Stanford-Binet intelligence scales.

For businesses, these tests can be useful in numerous ways. They can use psychometric assessments to discover more about people and what makes them work. In terms of ongoing recruitment or employee retention, they enable companies to look beyond refined CVs and establish genuine insights into people.

Why companies use them

Source: www.psychometrics.cam.ac.uk/news/news.25

Why do companies use them?

Psychometric measures can complement standard recruitment and hiring processes with a wealth of additional information. Establishing an understanding of a person’s suitability via psychological measures, never mind at the start of the hiring process, can ensure candidate quality and company culture are maintained and reinforced with every hire.

A CV may say the candidate works well as part of a team, but a psychometric test can investigate this claim more methodically. If you’re looking for a customer orientated extrovert to join a sales team or a creative and decisive person who is adept at working with data, a psychometric test can help you find one.

They can be used to pick up on everything from resilience and tolerance through to arithmetic ability and deductive reasoning. The results pinpoint strengths and weaknesses that can be consulted to make sure you hire who you need, not just somebody who has thoroughly prepared for an interview and put a sharp CV together.

China

India

Middle East

Eastern Europe

Usage is increasing in the UK in areas ranging from the treatment of mild mental disorder to organisational selection. Growing use in China, India, the Middle East and Eastern Europe is feeding back new approaches to human measurement.(www.psychometrics.cam.ac.uk/news/news.30)

How does a psychometric test work?

In traditional pen and paper form, these tests typically consist of a booklet of multiple choice questions and a separate answer sheet containing boxes for each possible answer. They work similarly when done on a computer, but are usually on a single webpage. Whether an assessment happens alongside an application or on the day of an interview, employers use them to find out something different from academic study and experience

While circumstances will vary depending on what’s being tested, psychometric tests look at the answers given to simple questions on topics ranging from patterns to emotional responses. They can be purely informational, but if a test is scored it will chiefly look for accuracy, consistency and speed.

Psychometric tests are not grueling investigations into the subconscious, but useful tools for identifying behaviors.

All psychometric tests run throughout the UK are governed by the British Psychological Society. There is also a requirement for an auditable trail to be maintained, allowing all queries or complaints to be investigated easily. To work and offer valid information, these tests need to be reliable, accurate and legitimate and it is the BPS that ensures this.

The range of psychometric tests apply theories of human behaviour to find matches for responsibilities and internal culture. This further understanding of a person’s characteristics in terms of personality, capability and motivations should not detract from usual appraisal or interviewing processes, but enhance them by validating or challenging interpretations.

In fact, the advantages are far reaching.

Discover the Advantages