While the recruitment space is ever-evolving, psychometric testing has retained its space. Recruiting a new hire is an expensive affair. Naturally, it’s in the interest of every company to ensure they hire the right talent who’ll add value to the business and help it grow and improve. To this end, psychometric test help identify and explore potential recruits’ long-term potential by measuring their behaviors, personality, and cognitive ability.

Herein, we delve into the what, when, and how to use psychometric tests to improve the quality of your recruits. We’ll look at the benefits of these tests and the potential pitfalls of using psychometric tests in your recruiting process.

What Is Psychometric Testing In The Hiring Process

A psychometric test assesses an applicant’s potential behavior, personality, and cognitive ability in relation to their suitability to work with the existing team of employees. By using psychometric tests, companies hope to hire applicants who are a good fit for the company’s culture and have the right skills for the specific role.

The test typically covers different areas and subject matters. Importantly, the assessment uses scientific methods and is objective by design. The test measures a candidate’s intelligence levels and aptitude regarding verbal, numerical, and logical skills. Additionally, the test measure and explore the applicant’s personality and emotional intelligence.

Some of the popular psychometric tests include:

– SHL Managerial and Graduate Item Bank

– Myer-Briggs Type Indicator

– Occupational Personality Questionnaire

– Minnesota Multiphasic Personality Inventory

– Raven’s Progressive Matrices

Components/Elements Of Psychometric Testing

Any psychometric test measures the full range of an applicant’s mental attributes. To this end, the assessment explores two main areas:

– Ability/aptitude

– Personality

Aptitude Tests – The aptitude part of the psychometric test involves assessing the applicant’s reasoning and logic. To this end, companies may assess for spatial ability, mechanical reasoning, data checking, abstract reasoning, numerical reasoning, verbal ability, and work sampling.

Personality Tests – As you would guess, personality tests are designed to help business assess and explore an applicant’s suitability to fit the company’s work environment and culture. Typically, the assessment uses questionnaires and explores the attitudes, behavior, motives, values, and preferences of applicants.

Why You Should Use Psychometric Testing

For many companies, a CV and cover letter are not enough. While cover letters and CVs are important, they tend to leave out a lot of elements of a person. Moreover, most are not as accurate as the recruiters might want, and the references tend to be biased. A psychometric test helps the recruiter attain an in-depth understanding of every applicant, especially regarding their suitability to fit the role.

Additionally, psychometric assessments help recruiters interested in a person’s holistic qualifications identify the most suitable person. In today’s job market, it’s not enough to have the requisite skills. Other aspects, especially soft skills, their personality, interest, personal story, and their ability to work with co-workers are also essential. A psychometric test will help recruiters peer into these qualities.

Psychometric tests are also perfect when you need to complement other interviewing tools. Whether you use in-person interviews, video call interviews, or any other technique, a psychometric test will improve your odds of hiring the right applicants.

Finally, psychometric tests help to standardize the interview process. The test brings structure to the recruitment process, ensuring the recruiters gain an in-depth understanding of every applicant, including their ability and personality.

When To Use Psychometric Testing

There are no strict stipulations as to when you should use psychometric tests. However, many companies tend to use these tests early on to eliminate all unsuitable applicants, reducing time wastage during the recruitment process.

That being said, there are companies that use these tests during the final phase of the hiring process. Since the tests help reveal some hidden attributes of applicants, they can recruiters affirm or question the suitability of their choice of candidate.

Pros And Cons Of Using Psychometric Testing When Recruiting

There are benefits and demerits to companies using psychometric testing when recruiting new hires. Here are some of the notable pros and cons.


– Negate unconscious biases of the recruiter

– Allow recruiters to glance into an applicant more than their CV can tell you

– The test can help companies save time and money during the recruitment

– The tests have been refined and improved after decades of use


– When used inappropriately, the results can be misleading

– With a wide variety of psychometric tests available, choosing just one to use can be difficult

– The test is imperfect as they do not account for cultural background, language barriers, etc.

– Some of the tests need expert input to decipher and understand the /results

How Effective Is Psychometric Testing During Recruiting

For any business, the biggest question is whether psychometric tests lead to good hires. Well, like many things in the business world, psychometric tests are not the be-all solution to recruitment. They have their place, but they often play a complementary role in recruitment. Businesses use the test to unearth what lies beyond a person’s CV. After all, the recruit must fit into the company and bring in skills and experience. Top hospitality recruitment agencies like Maria Logan swear by this type of testing to obtain the best staff for hotel and catering businesses.

Companies rely exclusively on psychometric tests for their recruitment and hire the wrong person for the role. A face example is Co-op Bank hiring Paul Flowers while heavily relying on psychometric testing. The test showed that he had excellent leadership skills even though he had nearly zero experience in the finance industry. He would resign after the bank had a £1.5billion funding black hole.

However, when used with CVs, in-person or video interviews, or any other recruitment tool, psychometrics can help weed out recruits that will not fit into an organization. Importantly, companies can add these tests to their recruitment regimen to bolster their recruitment process and ensure they hire the right people.


While psychometric tests are not the be-all recruitment tool, they have proven a valuable addition to the recruitment process in many companies. For any company interested in improving their recruitment process significantly and increasing the odds of onboarding new employees who will be great additions to the company, consider adding psychometric testing while hiring.

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