April 30, 2023

Pre-Employment Assessment: The Top 8

Zoha Siddiqui
Product Designer | Frontend Developer

What are Pre-Employment assessments?

Pre-Employment assessments are the tests or examinations given to job candidates, by employers to gain a better understanding of the applicants before making a hiring decision. These are the standardized ways of gathering data on candidates during the hiring process and are conducted to measure candidates' skills, personality traits, behavior, emotional intelligence, and abilities.

Pre-Employment assessments

Why do employers need pre-employment testing?

pre-employment testing

In order to predict job performance or determine whether an applicant is the best fit for a specific position or not, employers conduct pre-employment testing. This testing screen candidate and select the best candidates, to make sure they hire the best fit.

Key benefits of pre-employment testing

Following are a few advantages of pre-employment testing:

To step up your hiring process

Pre-employment testing help organizations by streamlining their recruitment process as they make sure that the new employees will be successful in their roles or not, leading to optimized cost and time.

Knowing the applicant's abilities beforehand

It is good to know the qualities of an applicant prior to onboarding because it will help you get to know whether the applicant fits your company culture and job role or not. These tests are constructed, keeping in mind the job description, and then match the results of these tests with the description.

Refining the quality of hire

Pre-employment tests help you identify the best candidates out of the pool and narrow down the number of applicants because they filter out the candidates based on the requirements mentioned in the job.

Improving the quality of interviews

You can ask specific questions from an applicant in the interview, with the help of results gathered from the test, leaving a positive candidate experience because it will show your interest in the personality of a candidate as an interviewer.

Eliminating common hiring bias

As pre-employment tests evaluate candidates on the same criteria, thus reducing biases and discrimination in the hiring process. It tests candidates entirely on their merit and abilities.

Effect of pre-employment tests on candidates?

There are some positive as well as negative effects of pre-employment tests on candidates:

Positive Effects:

  1. You can get insights into a candidate's personality from the results of the test and it will help you engage more with them in the interview.
  2. Candidates feel more interested and motivated when the interviewer asks them questions related to their answers mentioned in the test. For example, the interviewer can ask: "You answered a question in this way, why do you think this is the only way, or why this answer is right in your point of view?"
  3. Pre-employment tests help candidates understand more about the nature and requirements of the job.
  4. Candidates feel more confident if they perform well in the test and it can help them get more prepared for the next stage.

Negative Effects:

  1. Sometimes candidates might get confused and nervous if they are unfamiliar with the format of the test.
  2. Sometimes these tests can take more time than usual and it becomes frustrating for the applicant they try to complete the test as early as possible, without even reading the questions.
  3. Candidates may get worried if they feel that the test was not capable enough to fully capture their abilities or potential or was irrelevant with respect to their personality.

8 test types to consider for your next assessment

The pre-employment tests can be conducted online, in person, or both, depending upon the requirements of the job and organization.

The 8 most important pre-employment tests that must be included in every hiring process are:

Job Knowledge Tests

Job Knowledge Tests

Job knowledge tests are used to measure a candidate's technical abilities and expertise in the job they are applying for. They contain basic conceptual questions related to the industry of the job role and are effective for jobs that require specialized knowledge. Job knowledge tests also help the hiring managers or interviewers to validate the knowledge of previous work experience of the applicant, if any.

Personality Tests

Personality Tests

Personality tests are the most common and important pre-employment tests used by the majority of organizations as they have several benefits. They are crafted in such a way as to find out the interests, personality, attitude, and several traits of a candidate to make sure whether they are fit for the job role and company culture. These tests are useful to find out whether the candidate is comfortable in the open role. Do his traits match the potential required for the open position? The main thing about these tests is that they do not have a right a wrong answer, but understand the behavioral traits of an individual.

Cognitive Ability Tests

Cognitive Ability Tests

These are the most basic tests, designed to measure human intelligence. Cognitive Ability tests include IQ tests that assess the thinking abilities like problem-solving, reasoning, and verbal ability, and measure the general mental ability of a candidate. They evaluate a candidate's potential to perform certain job tasks. These tests might sometimes have biases, which may unfairly disadvantage certain groups of candidates.

Skills Tests

Skills Tests

Skills Tests are the skills that applicants might have picked up throughout their education and career and are helpful for the hiring managers to understand what strategies or solutions, the applicant already knows or will apply to a problem based on previous experience. They measure the candidate's attention to detail, numeracy, and much more.

Situational Judgement Tests

Situational Judgement Tests

Situational judgment tests or ‘SJTs’ determine how a candidate reacts or will react in a certain situation, and how well he can handle unwelcoming situations in the workplace. In these tests, candidates are presented with different scenarios related to risks or stress, and their behavior and actions are noted. Situational Judgment tests are particularly helpful for managerial and leadership requirements.

Integrity Tests

Integrity Tests

Integrity or honesty tests are conducted to check the reliability of employees and whether they will follow the company rules or not. They are used to predict the behavior of the candidate towards violations such as theft, lies, time-wasting, usage of drugs, fraud, etc.

Emotional Intelligence Tests

Emotional Intelligence Tests

Emotional intelligence tests study the emotions and understandings of a candidate. They are helpful to check abilities such as effectiveness, teamwork, motivation, and decision-making of an applicant. Strong emotional intelligence indicates that the applicant will possess good management skills, whereas weak emotional intelligence suggests that the applicant might not be suitable for leadership roles.

Physical Ability Tests

Physical Ability Tests

As the name suggests, these tests are conducted to test the physical fitness and strength of a candidate. These tests are mostly conducted where the job description demands a lot of physical work such as a firefighter, event planner, trainer, etc.

It is completely upon the nature of the job and requirements of the company to include which test/s in their hiring process. Draft and list down all the necessary questions that you need to ask the candidate in the respective test.


Which is the best pre-employment test?

It completely depends upon the nature of the open position and requirements of the company, which test/s they want to incorporate in their recruitment process. If one wants to check the general mental ability of the candidate, then IQ tests are the best, and if you want to know if the applicant has the learning capability or not, you can opt for aptitude tests and so on.

When to conduct pre-employment tests in the hiring process?

When to conduct employment tests depends on the employees or the hiring managers and the preferences of the organization. Sometimes companies consider organizing the test in the initial phase of the process and sometimes it's just the last screening step of the hiring process, just before the offer. It depends on when the organization thinks it's useful to conduct the test or when to wait.

What type of questions can I ask in integrity tests?

It's totally up to the companies to craft questions for integrity tests but to get you an overview, we have gathered a few sample questions:

  1. If a client has an illegal requirement, will you fulfill that?
  2. Will you ever publish or hand over your company works to another client?
  3. Will you ever disclose the current company's processes to another client or organization, even after leaving the organization?
  4. If you see any illegal activity, will you stop it or report it, even if you are not involved?
  5. How would you act if a senior member of your team violates a company law?

Are there any Pre-employment Assessment Tools available?

Yes, as most of the companies use pre-employment assessment tools to find suitable candidates for a certain job role because these tools save a lot of time by boosting the hiring process. There are a lot of tools out there that might assist you in creating Pre-employment tests.


The main goal of pre-employment testing is to provide significant insights and data about the overall abilities of an applicant so that employers can make more informed hiring decisions.

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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