Does a Cognitive Ability Test Really Have a Place in Recruitment?

Viewed from either side, recruitment is a challenge. For candidates, recruitment in the modern day can be very nerve-racking, intense, Apprentice-like. For employers, with so many people applying for jobs these days, it gets harder and harder to indentify the very best people for the job.

Which brings us to the cognitive ability test, or psychometric test. These are tests that are designed to carefully measure certain attributes of candidates, typically cognitive ability but also things like personality.

How can they aid recruitment? Anything that increases the rigours of the recruitment process obviously has some value, and extra testing is like an additional filter. By measuring applications across more dimensions, you can more easily identify the best candidate for the job.

What does a resume tell you? When you think about it, it’s scary how little a resume will actually tell you about a person, and that’s taking for granted that the candidate is being entirely honest. So, you might get a superficial idea of a candidate’s education and experience, but this doesn’t go deep enough into an employee’s actual ability.

Cognitive tests are able to drill down into the heart of a candidate’s ability, or lack of it as the case may be. They can be used to confirm or explode the assumptions that you might have made about candidates. It’s more information, and the more you know about a candidate the more able you are to make an informed decisions about them, it’s simple really.