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Pre-Employment Testing: Pros and Cons

Perfection is an illusion. No one is perfect; we all have combination personalities balancing the strengths and weaknesses. All the efforts are to utilize the strength and improve the weak areas.

 In this context, the recruitment procedure may also have deficiencies. Considering this fact the recruiters have started a structured screening program known as Pre-employment testing. These tools are being used by major companies in the recruitment process.EU agencies use EPSO test to filter most applicants who apply for a job. Many organizations have found Employment Personality testing by Berke Assessment quite helpful. 

Pre-employment tests are designed to judge different traits of the applicants but too cannot be ranked perfect. This well-structured program with many positives, also has some shortfalls. Let’s have a look at the pros and cons of pre-job tests.


Objective based

These tests are designed to extract more objective results than those of resume screening and pre-interview calls. 


These tests have the same standards for all applicants in this way it is easy to evaluate different candidates on the basis of the same questions. 

Interview and call screening may not fulfill this prerequisite, for the questions may differ from person to person.

Saves time

The biggest pro for this tool is that it is less time consuming, makes the process quicker and more convenient.  Different personality traits of a candidate are tested in one go. In addition to the personality and knowledge assessment, skills like typing, communication, problem-solving are also weighed.

Legally defensible

Pre-employment tests endow the recruiters’ decisions with strength against any legal claims for discrimination and biases. The results of the tests can be provided as evidence to prove the transparency of the recruitment procedure.

Relevant to job

Tests are designed specifically for a particular assessment. The focus is always on job related and knowledge-based questions. As they are well structured, the chances of distraction are least. On the contrary, during the interview, the conversation may go off the track.


The pre-employment testing has some downsides too


These tools are not budget friendly. The tests are purposely structured so the charges are high. Large companies, generally, have provisions for different types of expenditures.  But for small businesses, it becomes unfeasible to avail such facilities. 

One test is not enough

Tests are categorized under various segments i.e. personality tests, skill tests, job knowledge tests, drug test, etc. therefore one test is not enough in order to assess an applicant completely.

Creates ambiguity

Test results may be called ambiguous as it comes to the perception of different people about the same thing. Questions not related to the calculative values, like of general or moral nature, might be answered differently. Applicants come from different cultural backgrounds having different social values and contrast religions. Everyone answer on the basis of his belief, which creates ambiguity about the results.

Manipulates results

One of the many reasons to conduct a pre-employment test is to obtain real insight of the applicant as the resumes can be fake. But, to some extent, tests also can provide misinformation. 

For instance, no applicant would nominate himself as an introvert, anti-social, unethical, etc. every candidate opts for the best answer and the result are manipulated this way.


Pre-employment tests are a great tool to be used in order to increase objectivity but to rely completely on testing only in cynical. A combination of various assessment methods is the best decision.

Sanath Pollemore
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