• Opt4

Why pre-employment testing is a must, when employing staff!

Updated: Jun 14, 2018

Hiring staff is a costly exercise - hiring the wrong person can result in astronomical costs for your company.

The consequences of a wrong hire go beyond costs; there are also costs associated with a disrupted company culture, decreased work production, and potential loss of customers and revenue.

Bottom-line: Making the right hiring decision is crucial in establishing and keeping a company successful.

Top 9 reasons to test:

1. They give you unbiased results other than opinion based on interviews and referee checking

2. Personality testing can give you specific interview questions to ask, which are based on their answers; in fact, we test before the interview as all the tests can raise interview questions

3. They will help you reduce employee turnover costs and increase employee retention

4. They allow you to understand their skills level before you hire them, as either it will help you rule them out, rule them in, or help you develop an initial training plan

5. If not employing based on skills, but instead on attitude to fit your culture and aptitude to learn the job, then pre-employment testing will help you determine if they truly do have a good enough aptitude and the right attitude

6. Depending on the test, they can measure against the specific job and come back with a % match rating and also rate against all of the other thousands of people that have taken the tests

7. They can help you filter out candidates before spending precious time on interviews

8. They can streamline and speed up your hiring process

9. Makes it easier for you to make a decision as you have more facts at hand

Types of Pre-Employment Tests

There are many different types of pre-employment tests, but they generally fall into the following three categories:

Aptitude tests measure critical thinking, problem solving, and the ability to learn, digest and apply new information. These abilities are difficult to assess based solely on resumes and interviews, and that is where aptitude tests can help. If you need them to be a quick learner or a logical thinker, these tests can give you the answer.

Personality Tests seek to answer the questions: Will the candidate be comfortable in this role? Does the candidate have the behavioural traits that are linked to success in this position? Does the candidate have leadership traits? Unlike, with aptitude tests, there are no right or wrong answers on personality tests. Instead, these tests measure the extent to which people possess certain behavioural traits. Measuring these traits can help employers predict job fit by determining if a candidate's behavioural tendencies are a good match for both the position and the company culture.

Skills Tests measure job-related competencies; broad ones like verbal, math, and communication skills, or specific ones like typing, computer skills, MS Excel, number data entry etc. If you need someone to be fast at data entry, shouldn’t you then test them to ensure they are? It is important to understand the skill level against what you require, so firstly, you can ensure you are hiring the right skilled person and secondly, you could put a training program in place to upskill them in the areas where they are lacking.

To maximise the effectiveness of pre-employment testing, one useful strategy is to use more than one type of test. For example, it's very common to test aptitude, personality and the most essential skills. Using more than one test for each candidate allows employers to assess more than one relevant aspect of an applicant, providing more objective, reliable data to streamline the hiring process and make more informed decisions.


Pre-employment testing should be part of your hiring process to help you make a more informed decision and minimise the risk of hiring the wrong person! Often you are down to 1 to 3 final applicants applying for a position, the importance of being able to make comparisons can’t be underestimated. In conjunction with the interview and referee checking, these tests give a very accurate picture of a candidate’s potential to be successful in the position they are pursuing. So, they are not to replace the interview and referee checking, but to help back up your decision. Here, at Opt4, we can take care of all your pre-employment testing, give us a call on 577 9043 or email info@opt4.co.nz. We would love to help!

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