A helpful tool for recruitment agencies and businesses alike, psychometric tests have grown in popularity over the last decade and are now commonplace in a number of high-demand jobs. But with so many variations currently in the marketplace, it can be difficult to understand what they are and what potentially makes them so useful. 

So, what exactly is a psychometric test and how can it potentially help when it comes to finding quality professionals to help your clients?

What is a psychometric test?

Also known as an aptitude test, psychometric tests are designed to help evaluate and understand a job candidate’s strengths and weaknesses. While certain tests like whiteboard programming or problem solving quizzes can help assess a client’s specific skills, taking a psychometric test allows employers to get a more rounded view of the client’s skillset. 

These can be geared toward a number of roles but primarily seek to assess-

Problem Solving Skills: Tests can ask takers to find solutions to problems, most often within a time limit. This allows organisers to assess the speed with which they resolve an issue, the number of clicks they use and more. 

Practical Knowledge: Tailored tests can be provided to assess job specific knowledge through open ended questions, closed questions, or practical problem solving. 

Relevant abilities: Many technical or soft skills are required outside of the standard scoring metrics. This can help assess an understanding of a taker’s professional responsibilities, their approach to work, or additional skills that are essential for the work. 

Behavioural Responses: These are perhaps the best-known version of aptitude tests and allow test creators to assess leadership abilities, capacity for reasoning, abstract calculation and more. 

What questions are asked?

While many tests can be customised to fit your userbase, they are often made up to specifically target a number of key employment criteria. These include but are no means limited to.

Error Resolution Questions: Common in almost all tests, these involve spotting mistakes in volumes of work. This can take the form of catching punctuation, grammatical, layout, and formatting issues across a range of potential sectors. 

Logical Questions: One of the most popular question types, these test abstract reasoning and logic. These range from pattern recognition, inductive and deductive reasoning, diagrammatic reason questions and more. 

Memory and Concentration Questions: Common in many tests, this checks an applicant’s ability to carry out and internalise tasks in quick succession – asking them to memorise and recall values with a high degree of accuracy or under distraction. 

Numerical Questions: These are deployed to test numeracy, dealing with equations, graphs, formulae, and other problems. 

Spatial questions: These require the management of 2D and 3D constructs to demonstrate your capacity to understand spatial ability – from folding and compressing objects to visual spatial awareness and mental visualisation. 

Technical Questions: These are deployed for skilled technical roles that require extensive vetting. These most often ask for the application of the foundational mechanical, computational, or logistical knowledge that underpins a job. Most often not tied to regulatory standards, these can be added where required. 

Verbal Questions: Most commonly represented by true/false propositions, these require the ability to parse and understand text, often asking takers to digest large amounts of information in a limited period of time. 

If required, other bespoke questions can be added to the test – with digital deployment methods allowing for a high degree of customisation, validation, and follow up analysis for takers. This can then be analysed to give employers a rounded picture of the employee’s personal and professional strengths – giving them additional insight into their capacity to carry out their job successfully. 

How are they used?

While psychometric tests can be applied in a range of environments, the rise of digital technologies allows takers to potentially fill out their tests in a number of locations. Doing so provides metricised data that can be used to better understand the potential that applicants represent.

Working with psychometric tests are a highly efficient and customisable way to assess a large number of applicants in quick succession. This can involve taking tests at home through tamper proof digital portals, on site in dedicated test centres, or as part of a job interview. This high degree of flexibility makes them a useful tool for adding extra detail to recruiting action without excessive time or resource expenditure. 

A good test also allows you to look at a range of variables and seek out additional information such as response time, error rates, and other essential interaction data. This can also be used to help guide decision making while being fed back into the system to improve form structure and clarity when it comes to wording or removing obstacles that prevent takers from successfully answering questions. 

However, while these tests are helpful, they are not an end in themselves. Any employer should use the tests as a guide to help view an employee’s skillset and should help validate a decision that is reached independently of taking a test. 

Ultimately, managing to deploy a psychometric test can allow you to access a range of options that allow you to save time, energy, and – most importantly – find the right individual for the job when it truly matters the most. 

What next?

If you want to learn more about how to improve your employee efficiency, our team at Practical Software is here to help. With many years’ professional experience, we work with you to understand your professional needs and provide a tailored software solution that works for you.You can view our full list of products and services from here. Or, if you have any specific questions or queries about our work, please do not hesitate to get in touch directly and let our teams know exactly what you need.