How to select the right candidates in a tough job market

Figures from the Office for National Statistics (ONS) show that UK unemployment fell in the three months to December 2012 and the number of people in work rose by 154,000 to 29.7 million, with more than 580,000 more people employed than a year ago. However competition for vacancies has never been so tough as highlighted by the recent news that 1,700 people applied for approximately eight jobs at a new coffee shop in Mapperley, Nottingham. Here Getfeedback Consultant, Alana Inness, provides advice on how to select the best candidates in a tough job market.

Increasing the accuracy of your recruitment decision making

Research has shown that when you measure more than one aspect of the individual you can increase the accuracy of your recruitment decisions to up to 85%, as opposed to accuracy of only 25-30% for traditional interviews. Here at Getfeedback we assess a number of different aspects of the individual when helping our clients to make appointments. Our first step in helping our clients make the best decisions is to understand the role that they are recruiting for – what does good look like and what are the most vital elements of that role. There are a number of elements that we think about when choosing the best assessment methods, represented in our onion model below:

As well as whether the individual is academically or experientially qualified it is important to consider a number of other elements that can help predict future performance.

Ability: Cognitive ability has been proven to be the biggest predictor of how well an individual will perform in role.  This is particularly important where the role is very complex or the individual will be expected to operate in ambiguous situations.  We have a number of ability assessments that can be used for different types of roles.  One of the most popular is the Watson-Glaser Critical Thinking Appraisal, which measures the ability to recognise problems, look for evidence to solve it and also assess evidence in a logical way in order to determine new knowledge and direction.  It is an assessment that can be used with graduates, managers and leaders.  There is an accompanying assessment that has been designed to measure numerical reasoning – the Rust Advanced Numerical Reasoning Appraisal – and we often recommend these tools be used in combination in order to understand a candidates’ cognitive ability.

Personality: Personality psychometrics measure an individual’s character traits.  These traits are the things that enable us to predict how they might behave in certain circumstances.  Understanding someone’s personality helps to understand how they work, what type of work they will excel in and how they will relate to their colleagues and manage others.  Getfeedback offer a range of personality tools; from broad-spectrum personality tools based on the “Big Five” such as Orpheus to Dimensions personality psychometric, which provides a new and efficient option for measuring personality with a range of reports available.  We help our clients to select the best personality tool for the role requirements.

Motivation: Understanding the internal motivators and drivers of an individual can help identify an individual's ideal role, important in ascertaining not only what they can do but what they will do.  Getfeedback’s IntrinsicTM motivation assessment offers an understanding as to how an individual will convert competency into performance.  This complements the 'extrinsic' motivation drivers - such as salary or bonuses – that can be assessed during an interview but have less of an impact on how engaged with a role and the organisation an individual will be.

Behaviour: Whilst psychometrics are excellent tools to measure the internal factors such as motivation, personality and aptitude we also need to understand how these factors are affecting what we can observe.  Getfeedback recommends the Schroder model of High Performance when assessing and developing individuals.  This highly robust and recognised behavioural framework has been researched and developed for over 20 years making it one of the most validated frameworks available.  To understand how an individual’s behaviour is likely to affect how they undertake and perform in a role we can use either a standalone Behavioural Event Interview or a range of behaviourally observed exercises as part of a bespoke or off-the-shelf assessment centre.

Our assessment methodology –using psychometric and behaviourally based assessments together - has proved to be 93% accurate in predicting in-role performance.  If you would like further information please get in touch.