Some business organizations hire people outright after studying their resume and doing some interview, but others take recruitment to another level by subjecting applicants to a test.
Today, companies opt to digitalized or use computers to create tests and no longer use paper and ink. Similarly, a practical or simulated exam may provide better results than mere theoretical ones. Regardless of the method, it should easier to understand the essence of a person’s skills and attitude when that person goes through some examination.
Tests are standardized to a certain degree in order to clearly categorize applicants in that single aspect, and to help management choose the better hire. But tests should not be too rigid in that it prohibits people from becoming creative and imaginative, especially if the position requires such qualities. In this case, offering an exam with no predefined right or wrong answer is apt, and the examiner will then have to decide the more preferable answer.
Scores are measurements of a person’s abilities in a specific field, but should never be taken as an absolute to define such person. In the same way, not all who graduate with honors are certain to become financially or professionally successful in the future. This discredits those notable school dropouts who are now the big bosses of honor roll graduates.
A heterogeneous mix of hires may be more practical for an organization to succeed, than a homogeneous one where only the academically gifted are hired. The blend of recruits naturally depends on the culture a company wants to cultivate. When only one person fails an exam, it immediately makes him the least viable hire. When only one person passes the exam, it does not immediately make him the most viable to hire especially if they are all more or less of the same caliber, and that his score was only a hairline above the passing mark.
Yes, pre-hire exams are important guides to measure applicants’ competencies, but should not be used solely to define or categorize recruits. In order to hire the best people, HR must look beyond who got the best score in the exams.