March 30, 2023

Your go-to candidate assessment techniques!

What is candidate assessment?

Candidate assessment is a process of evaluating a candidate through various methods, including tests, assessments, interviews, work samples, and reference checks to determine whether they are fit for a role.  

In this process, an HR or an employer assesses the candidate's skills, experience, expertise, and qualifications. It helps you screen inbound applicants quickly, equitably, and effectively.

evaluating a candidate

The goal of candidate assessment

 best fit

The main objective of this process is to evaluate whether or not a candidate is the best fit for the applied position. It aims to identify the candidate's skills, expertise, experience, and other relevant characteristics to determine whether they meet the job requirements.  

The purpose is to make informed hiring decisions to select the best fit for the open position and minimize the risk of costly hiring mistakes.

A roller ride to the candidate assessment process

It is the most critical component of effective hiring and varies from organization to organization based on their requirements.  

Organizations typically look at cultural fit, education, knowledge, skill competencies, behavioural and personality attributes, and knowledge.

Following are some common stages that take place in the assessment process:

Job description and postings:

The process takes start when the need for hiring arises at the organization. You plan and write down the requirements you want in an applicant and use different mediums to attract top talent.

To find out more about where you can source top talent.

Job applications and candidate screening:

After gathering the bulk of applications from different mediums comes the difficult part of assessing the candidates. Candidates are screened automatically, manually, or both, depending on the priorities and resources of the company. It also majorly depends upon the responsibility, complexity, and skills associated with the job title. For example, an entry-level candidate is evaluated differently than an experienced applicant. There will be a different level of screening for a data entry engineer than a candidate shortlisted for a content writing role.

The screening phase typically includes:

  1. Automated resume parsing and cover letters, that are typically done by ATS. Validate the resume and ensure it does not contain any fake information. But how to ensure that? Learn how to be aware and avoid being tricked by resume fraud.
  2. Cross-check the candidate's social profiles to gather more information or warning signs.
  3. Assessments and tests, that help assess the candidate's experience, knowledge, and skills.
  4. Telephone, video, or onsite interviews, that can be technical and behavioural depending on the position and the company’s needs.

Testing the candidates:

After the screening, the potential candidates get shortlisted and tested accordingly. Different types of tests are out there, depending on the role you are hiring for and the company's requirements. Following are some types of tests that can help you in your candidate assessment process:

  1. Tests specifically related to the skills of the candidate.
  2. Technical tests, like programming questions, etc.
  3. Personality tests to help comprehend whether the candidate is a cultural fit or not. Read more about the benefits of personality tests.
  4. Creative writing tests, like writing an article, etc.
  5. Situational tests, to determine how a candidate performs under different situations.
  6. Behavioural tests.
  7. Cognitive ability tests.
  8. Communication tests.
  9. Presentations.
  10. Assignments.

Learn how you can use the scoring cards to better evaluate and compare candidates.

Background checks:

Once you have verified the accuracy of the candidate's resume and confirmed its authenticity, it is advised to evaluate furthermore, on certain aspects to mitigate potential risks. Assure that what they’ve told you about their background and experience is accurate or not by background checking.

Below are some examples of background checks you can consider:

  1. Check for criminal records.
  2. Check and contact the mentioned references.
  3. Verify educational degrees and records.
  4. Confirmation of prior work experience.
  5. Security clearance checks.

Lawful and eligibility checks:

At last, make sure that your candidates are aware of and fulfil all the legal requirements before sending an offer to them.

stages that take place in the assessment process

Remember that stages 3-5 are not mandatory and can vary depending on the requirements of the organization.

What to avoid in candidate assessment?

avoid in candidate assessment

While conducting candidate assessments, keep in mind to remain fair and avoid personal biases and preconceptions about candidates. Avoid favouritism due to race, gender, colour, caste, etc. Treat everyone equally, give them all the same opportunities, and ensure the assessment process is fair.

Risky-disky in candidate assessment

There are multiple risks involved in candidate assessment, for example:

  1. Irrelevant tests: There may be cases where some tests are not accurate for evaluating the skills or qualifications of a candidate.
  2. Favouritism: Rather than evaluating the candidate on their talent and skills, favouring candidates on personal opinions and making judgments based on their group, caste, colour, race, etc.
  3. A failed experience, eventually a bad reputation: A candidate with a bad experience will spread the word about the company, ultimately harming the company’s reputation and making it difficult to attract top talent in the future.
  4. Time and cost: Assessing candidates requires effort and can be time-consuming and costly, especially if there are many candidates to evaluate and multiple rounds of assessments.

10 ways to screen your candidates like a pro

Let’s screen job applicants, using the following techniques:

  1. Testing skills: Test the applicant's skills by taking assessments to see if they can do the job. It improves the quality of candidates moving to the next stage, and only potential ones are shortlisted. Using an online tool will come in handy since manually creating the test would be more costly and time-consuming.
  2. Video Interviews: Save time and effort for both recruiters and applicants by conducting virtual interviews early in the recruitment process. It confirms the technical and cultural fit of the applicant before proceeding to a more complicated conversation. You can find a variety of tools out there to conduct video interviews.
  3. In-person interviews: In-person interviews can include technical and behavioural interviews. Technical interviews are designed to assess the candidate's technical knowledge related to the job description, whereas behavioural interviews are used to evaluate a candidate's soft skills.
  4. Phone screening: A short and minimal interview to assess a candidate's communication skills, usually done after evaluating the resume.
  5. Resume screening: The most popular way to screen candidates. It gives the recruiter a clear insight into the candidate's personal information, education, experience, skills, work experiences, hobbies, etc. It takes a lot of time if there are a bulk of candidates.
  6. An applicant tracking system: A tool that minimizes the effort and time required to manually assess the resumes. These systems automatically analyze resumes and find the best candidates on your behalf. Their main goal is to match applications with the required criteria. Read more about how an ATS can cut down your hiring difficulty and reduce your cost and time per hire to third.
  7. Reference check: It would be great if you check and hear about the performance of the applicant from previous employers. It gives a good overview of a candidate’s history and abilities. However, do not rely entirely on the previous employer’s objectiveness and play your part too.
  8. Social media screening: A free and particularly one of the easiest ways to screen candidates. Recruiters can find a lot about the candidates from their websites, public portfolios, or social accounts by doing a quick search. They can also validate the information in the resumes from social media sites such as LinkedIn or Facebook.
  9. Tests: Different types of tests mentioned above, can be used to evaluate candidates on various aspects.
  10. Assignments: Sometimes HR distributes home-based tasks after the interviews to put candidates’ on-paper skills to a quick stress test. They expect candidates to finish the assignments within the communicated time.
screen job applicants


Screening candidates is the first and foremost part of the hiring process. There are multiple techniques out there when it comes to candidate assessment, and the most suitable method for you entirely depends on your job description and the company’s requirements.

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Hirecinch is one of the best applicant tracking system I have used ever, literally my my job easier

Hirecinch is one of the best applicant tracking system I have used ever, literally my my job easier

Hirecinch is one of the best applicant tracking system I have used ever, literally my my job easier

Hirecinch is one of the best applicant tracking system I have used ever, literally my my job easier

Hirecinch is one of the best applicant tracking system I have used ever, literally my my job easier

Hirecinch is one of the best applicant tracking system I have used ever, literally my my job easier

Hirecinch is one of the best applicant tracking system I have used ever, literally my my job easier