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Assess first, interview second.

I never imagined that validation of the HireMatch.me pre-assessed candidate model would come from my brother Tony, but lo and behold it has. A little bit about my big brother: he has four daughters and works three jobs (one full time and two part time) while taking online classes to earn his bachelor’s degree. The guy flat out hustles for his family and makes me immensely proud.

We both grew up on a printing factory floor. We have printing ink running through our veins (since I’m no longer in the printing field mine is thinning a little). He is currently interviewing for a supervisory position at another printing company. And, with almost thirty years of printing experience, he is more than qualified. He lives and breathes things like dot gain and ink viscosity. Always has. It’s a family tradition started by our dad.

During his interview process, he has successfully navigated three rounds of interviews for a great new job that will make it possible for him to work only one job (while still taking online courses). He has been told off the record that he is the only candidate remaining, but after all the interview questions and reference checks (one of which is the president of his current company, impressive!) he is now being subjected to a profile assessment. Now?!?! After three interviews?!?!

Why now? Why not after the first interview or even the second? I’m assuming most will argue the expense of the assessments prohibits most companies from administering them until they are almost certainly sure that the candidate is the one they absolutely probably want to hire. Pending the outcome of the assessment, of course.

On the surface this makes some sense, until you start adding up the company soft costs involved in interviewing that is – especially multiple rounds of interviews. There are also costs incurred by the candidates: travel and time off from their current jobs to attend interviews (plus anxiety, which increases with each round). They fail to factor in the cost of scheduling interviews, the time and productivity lost by company employees conducting the interviews, time spent evaluating each interview, etc. In other words, interviewing isn’t free. It adds up quickly.

My point is if you’re going to use assessments as a way of eliminating candidates, then surely it should be done after the first interview at the latest. Obviously, I’m a big believer in assessing work behaviors and cultural fit to determine the ideal employee. They are crucial elements in predicting long-term employment, especially in a supervisory role like the one for which Tony is interviewing. However, just as important in this case is industry knowledge and work ethic. Both of which my big brother has by the buckets full.

This is where two of the biggest assets in the HireMatch.me arsenal will come into play:

1) EVERY candidate is pre-assessed to determine work behavior and cultural fit at no extra cost to anyone

2) Since every assessment is completed before the candidates join our talent community, they don’t actually know the exact jobs they might be matched to. More here in a previous blog post.

This prevents natural skewing of results towards specific jobs and so candidates are able to paint a more honest picture of themselves. Knowing work behavior and cultural fit ahead of time saves everyone involved time, money, anxiety and frustration. Everyone wins (except the traditional assessment companies). Hopefully my brother wins in spite of not having the advantage of the pre-assessment.

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