Online assessments on the rise, says new research

by L&D13 Apr 2016
If you’re not using online assessments, you’re in the minority, according to a new study.

Indeed, 52% of organisations now use online assessments to primarily develop and recruit key employees such as managers, white-collar workers, apprentices and graduates.

The research also found that the global market for online assessment has risen by 18% in the last three years. 

The study involved 2,776 HR, recruitment and talent practitioners across 14 countries. The report, Global Assessment Barometer 2016, was conducted by the international assessment specialist cut-e.

In particular, assessments are helping to achieve greater diversity, as employers aim to make faster and more objective selection decisions, according to Dr Achim Preuss, Managing Director of cut-e.

“We’ve been monitoring worldwide trends in psychometric assessment since 2010, looking at how HR practitioners, hiring managers and L&D teams use different tests in different countries,” he said.

"Assessment used to be about reducing the risk of making a bad hire but this year, we’ve seen a marked change.

“Shorter, more customised, brand-relevant tests are now being used earlier in the selection process to identify the right people. Increasingly, employers want to predict which candidates in their applicant pool will ‘fit’ their organisation and be strong performers who will add value to the business.” 

The study found the fastest growing assessment tools are development centres, assessment centres, integrity and values questionnaires and Situational Judgement Questionnaires.

Moreover, two new trends have emerged this year: pre-application assessment and testing via mobile devices. 

“Pre-application assessment is about educating potential applicants on the role and the organisation, before they apply,” said Dr Preuss.

“This helps employers to find the right people and it stops browsing candidates from applying for jobs that aren’t suitable for them. Mobile assessment, via smartphones and tablets, allows candidates to complete their assessments whenever they want.”

Dr Preuss added that over the past two years, it has become much easier to measure and evaluate the impact of psychometrics on business outcomes.

“There’s now a greater demand for accessible and interpretable analytics which can give fresh insights about all aspects of an organisation’s talent strategy," he said.

“Employers want to ask sophisticated questions and get real-time answers from their pre-hire data and their employee performance data. Talent analytics and using validity studies to establish the best predictors of success are likely to be the growth areas in assessment in the future.”