Types of tests commonly used by firms in selection of employees

Types of Tests commonly used for recruitment in firms

So far, a wide variety of tests have been devised by the industrial psychologists. But a detailed study of various tests is beyond the scope of this book. Hence, we shall confine our discussion with a few type of tests commonly used in all firms. They are as follows:

1. Performance Tests: This is the most common and obviously the simplest method of testing used by majority of the firms. Performance tests are generally conducted to find out the skillful workers and their ability do the job assigned to them. These tests are generally used in selection of most experienced employees in a firm.

2. Intelligence Tests: This test is used to measure the mental ability or mental alertness of the applicant. Individuals differ in their ability to learn various types of technical jobs. Bright people can learn almost any job quicker than those who are less intelligent. Therefore, the tests are invariably used by all establishments to identify the brilliant candidates.

Moreover, these tests not only measures a single factor but a combination of several factors such as verbal comprehension, mathematical aptitude, inductive reasoning and straight memory. A large number of tailor made tests i.e., standardized tests are available for this purpose. These tests are highly useful for entrance level, clerical and trade.

3. Personality Tests: For many positions, particularly at higher level, personality appears to be a critical factor in job performance. Personality tests seek to measure personal characteristics like motivation to work, temperament, cooperativeness, dominance, self-confidence, etc. These tests were developed during Second World War when a great number of trained technicians were in demand.

4. Aptitude Tests: In a sense, aptitude test is a kind of intelligence test that measures the overall learning ability i.e., the applicants’ potential ability rather than past achievement. The aptitude tests were developed by psychologists with a view to predict the livelihood that an applicant if given adequate training will be able to learn specific job.

5. Achievement Tests: These tests are also known as proficiency tests. The skill already acquired by the candidate either through his education or experience can be measured through these tests. These tests, in a sense, are similar to the performance tests.

6. Interest Tests: These tests are conducted to see the field of interest of a candidate in terms of his liking and disliking. Interest is a positive factor which leads to favorable results on the job. Ascertaining the interest of the applicant will enable the management to place him at the most suitable job.

How Many Tests or What is an ideal number of tests to be conducted?

There are hundreds of different tests and we have mentioned only a few of them. It is humanly impossible to conduct all tests but it is desirable to conduct five or six tests to ascertain the ability of the candidate. Besides, it is also not enough to conduct a single test and rely upon the results of that lonely test. Hence, psychologist have suggested to conduct a series of tests called a ‘battery’ rather than a simple test. Thus, a combination of several test i.e., battery is desirable for the proper selection and placement of candidates.