Would you believe your challenges in hiring candidates who stay and thrive stem from you not understanding artificial intelligence (AI)? The AI I’m talking about in this case is pre-employment assessments. While it’s likely you already perform some sort of assessments—8 out of 10 employers do—you may not be conducting the right ones in the right way. Assessments are becoming so intelligent, so highly predictable, I expect them to one day soon replace person-to-person interviewing completely.
The category tipping scales? Culture assessments.
I’ve seen for myself how culture assessments can catapult hiring success. But to explain why and how it works, we asked executive consultant Sumeet Chahal about the trend. Sumeet is a licensed administrator of the Culture Index, an applied analytical traits assessment program. Here are the points he helped us clarify:
- Culture assessments help create objectivity. Everything that is traditionally part of the hiring process is subjective, except maybe the drug test at the end. The job candidate could have had professional help with their resume, and they’re certainly giving you their best, rehearsed self during the interview process. It’s sometimes not until after 60 or 90 days that a new hire might start showing you who they really are. Assessments give you a better way to stay objective. And while skills assessments have been popular for a while now, culture assessments are now just coming into their own.
- But you need to learn to trust the data over your gut. Sumeet admits this was hard for him to do at first. Once, as he was helping run a clinic in Memphis, a colleague recommended he hire a specific nurse. After meeting with her, he was reluctant. “I just didn’t think she was ‘the face’ I wanted for the clinic. She was rough around the edges,” he admitted. “I wanted to put my gut first, but I believed in the data. So I had her take the assessment and, based on her results, I hired her. She remains one of the top hires I’ve ever made. She was exactly who we needed when we needed it.” He estimates that “his gut” has an unpredictable 40-70% success rate with hiring. But he’s seen his work in hiring with the Culture Index surpass 90% success.
- You should lead with the assessment first. I’m such a believer in how culture assessments are evolving that I think they’ll make actual person-to-person interviews obsolete. Whether you believe that or not, I’d urge you to try something a little crazy: Start with a culture assessment first before you do anything else in the hiring process. Sumeet agrees and points out that more and more employers are having candidates fill out these quick assessments before being called in for an interview—saving both parties valuable time and energy.
- Culture assessments can help current employees succeed, too. Sumeet points out that culture assessments can also help existing employees who are unhappy or underperforming. It could be that an employee who fits the general company culture just isn’t right for their current position or team. “Say you’ve got someone in sales or customer service who would be a better fit for operations. Instead of letting them go, you might find they could be a star performer elsewhere,” he offers.
Hiring tools like culture assessments are evolving so rapidly that no employer is expected to master it all. So how do you keep up with the latest practices? Ask for help. At recruitAbility, we use assessments regularly and work with professionals like Sumeet who know how to analyze the data and who stay on top of the trends. We’re happy to help you tap into this power of AI for recruiting, too.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Nad Elias, CEO, recruitAbility
Nad has been in the search and recruiting industry for 15+ years. Recognized by the Texas Association of Personnel Consultants as one of the top 50 recruiters in Texas, he has a passion for building high-performing teams and disturbing the status quo of company culture.
A University of Texas graduate and Austin native, he is also a member of the Austin Technology Council and was named finalist for the Austin Under 40 Award in 2013. When he’s not chasing his two kids around, Nad plays basketball or a quick round of golf whenever he can fit it in.