Quality of Hire & Improving Hiring Efficiency – How you can accomplish both with valid pre-hire assessments

May 14, 2020 Brandon DeCaro

The evolving COVID-19 pandemic has drastically changed the landscape of recruiting and selection. The new economic reality is that many organizations are laying off or furloughing workers. But in other organizations, hiring is ramping up, and talent managers must deploy new models of finding great people in the midst of disruption. Companies that provide essential services are seeing a surge in demand. News channels are filled with stories of praise for frontline workers and other essential employees: store associates, pharmacy aides, delivery drivers and fulfilment center associates, to name a few. This narrative is a testament to the important role essential workers play in keeping businesses afloat and the public supplied with necessities like food, medicines and other critical items. 

In these unprecedented times, businesses need competent workers who can learn and follow procedures, work collaboratively and provide excellent customer service. Simply put, they need people who will show up and get the job done. The companies that stay strong, and successfully navigate the many challenges of these tumultuous times, will be the ones that can pivot quickly and assemble a workforce of dependable, flexible and courteous essential workers.

HR teams and recruiters need a fast, frictionless way to identify candidates with the right skills to fill their essential roles. Here are three ways talent assessments can help organizations better fill their essential roles with the right people to drive their businesses forward.

Take the Risk Out of Hiring

The people risk all organizations face is the risk of mission failure if they don’t have the right people on their teams. This is especially true for essential businesses who need to fill critical roles very quickly. The consequences of not working in a conscientious manner were considerable before COVID-19 and are catastrophic now.

Poor hires can result in careless mistakes being made, and this coupled with being understaffed means a company can very quickly run into serious problems meeting consumer needs. Consider the detrimental effects of out-of-stock items, sparse shelves, missed delivery deadlines or safety violations. Not only do these issues pose a problem for the general population – many of whom are struggling to keep on top of basic needs – but they also reflect poorly on the company brand.

However, these risks can be mitigated because they are the result of behaviors, which are based on work styles and preferences that can be measured. This is where talent assessments add value. They can help you hire in volume without sacrificing quality of hire. For example, Aon’s science-backed ADEPT-15® Essential Skills solution identifies employees with the five skills and traits that result in quality hires across a range of sectors and roles. By assessing key behaviors such as being respectful to coworkers and customers and following through on commitments, it gives insight into who you can count on to keep your business moving forward and allows you to predict who will be a good worker before they even start. Aon found that top- scoring candidates are 26% more likely to be top performers and 20% more likely to learn and follow procedures.

Hire Quickly and Efficiently

In times of crisis, it may seem like pre-hire assessment will slow you down, but the opposite is true. Utilizing assessments saves time and effort by quickly focusing in on candidates most likely to be successful employees.

A quick, easy to complete assessment can contribute to a frictionless hiring process that allows you to fill essential roles faster than traditional methods. Reducing time-to-hire means new essential workers can get up and running faster and begin contributing to the bottom line. By implementing online assessments, we’ve seen retail clients reduce time to hire by up to 40% and one retail client saved $2.2M in manhours by eliminating unnecessary interviews.

Moving quickly is essential. Moving quickly with the right essential workers is an even better strategy.

Streamlining the hiring process brings tangible efficiencies and allows your HR team to devote valuable time to other pressing issues in areas such as work-from-home, return-to-work, employee wellness, safety, and communications coordination.

Know Who Has the Skills to Succeed

Predicting performance with assessments leads to confident hiring decisions. When we measure a person’s level of essential skills, we gain real insight into how he or she will perform on the job. The cost of a bad hire has always been consequential. Today, it’s more apparent than ever that companies cannot afford to keep workers on staff who arrive late, disappoint customers, or put themselves or coworkers at physical risk. So why risk bringing them onboard in the first place? It’s best to assess for essential skills from the start.

Our research has found five skills to be predictive of success across sectors and roles, and we’ve created an off-the-shelf solution to measure them. It’s a fair assessment that is face valid and backed by robust psychometrics.

Here’s how we define essential skills:

·      Dependability – Is reliable, dependable, follows through on commitments and shows up to work.

·      Flexibility – Willing to shift between tasks and activities as needed.

·      Willingness to Learn – Learns and maintains knowledge of procedures, rules, policies and is willing to learn new areas of responsibility to assist as needed.

·      Decisiveness – Is comfortable approaching others and engaging in conversation. Ensures others are following proper rules and procedures and is comfortable speaking up to address issues or violations. Is able to make decisions as needed to carry out work.

·      Cooperativeness – Is considerate, polite and respectful to coworkers and customers.

Why Assess for Essential Skills?

Aon’s research has found that top performers are:

·      26% more likely to be top performers

·      46% more likely to use judgement and make decisions

·      22% more likely to work productively and drive results

Using a predictive tool like Aon’s Essential Skills Assessment means you’re making the best-informed decisions based on a validated, legally defensible process that mitigates risk and bias.

Moving quickly is essential. Moving quickly with the right essential workers is an even better strategy.

Visit our website to learn more about how our off-the-shelf Essential Skills assessment can help you hire top quality candidates at top speed.

About the Author

Brandon DeCaro

As a member or Aon's North American Assessment Solutions team Brandon helps Enterprise organizations implement digital ready assessment solutions across all phases of the Talent Life-cycle. This includes Talent Acquisition, Development, Retention, Success Planning and more.

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