Feedback Questionnaire

Does the science behind psychometric tests stack up?

Psychometric testing in recruitment is nothing new and is highly prominent in executive search but is also widely used when selecting candidates for promotions, graduate positions and where there are a high volume of applicants. For those that use them there is a clear believe that they bring a certain level of objectivity when selecting and judging candidates that interviewing alone cannot offer. When psychometric tests get it right it is easy to see why more than 75% of The Times Best Companies to Work For and 80% of Fortune 500 firms use them. They can offer a means of supporting managers by increasing their self-awareness, reducing unconscious biases and filtering large numbers of candidates and amounts of information in a short period of time. However, when psychometric tests get it wrong the consequences can be widely felt as in the case of the former Chairman of the Co-operative Bank, Reverend Paul Flowers. After a large scandal MPs heard through evidence given to the Treasury Select Committee, being held regarding the matter, that although Flowers, a former Methodist minister, had little experience in banking when he was appointed in 2010 he was indeed appointed to the senior banking role after “He did very well in the psychometric tests.” So, could psychometrics really be to blame for one of the country’s most high profile and misjudged appointments? Many believe the answer to be a resounding yes as they should have highlighted that Flowers had a tendency towards extreme risk taking and was therefore clearly unsuitable for his role. So, have businesses become too reliant on psychometric testing for recruitment and...