/ Asked by Jackson
I read in the Wall Street Journal recently about extensive personality testing and other screening for candidates prior to "on boarding" - is this common for first jobs or more executive level? And, any advice if I have to take one of these tests?
Answered by Ellen, Hiring Expert at Hospira, on Monday, April 20, 2015
This is a great question.  Actually my experience is more companies are conducting pre-employment testing at all levels.  Most of the instruments are tied to "fit" but some do cognitive testing, as well.  The best advice I can provide is take the test in a quiet area so you do not have any distractions.  Some tests are timed.  Answer the questions honestly.  Don't over think the questions.  Many companies use the results to help coach employees once they onboard.  Hope this is helpful and good luck!
Answered by Stephanie, Hiring Expert at Asurion, on Monday, April 20, 2015
Personality tests are a great way to learn more about a candidate and their strengths. They allow for more insight than a 30-minute interview does. There are a number of personality tests and each serves a different purpose. For example, the StrengthsFinder identifies the top five areas in which an individual naturally excels. Taking this assessment prior to interviews is beneficial for a number of reasons: it provides you with an answer to the interview prompt, "Tell me about your strengths"; reading the short chapters about your strengths in the StrengthsFinder book also teaches you about the type of work/work environment in which you might excel, helping you better understand yourself. It is becoming more common for an individual to list their StrengthsFinder results somewhere on their resume or LinkedIn profile. Other common personality assessments are the Myers-Briggs (MBTI), the DiSC, and the True Colors assessment. Personality tests are a great way for you to learn more about yourself, prepare for interviews, and also help employers understand you more. I definintely recommend taking a few assessments - there really aren't downsides of doing so. 
Answered by Charlene, Hiring Expert at Gap Inc., on Tuesday, April 21, 2015
Great you ask this question!  More and more companies are doing assessments at all levels, prior to extending candidates offers. Companies have found that these assessments are helping them retain employees longer.  The assessment is trying to ensure the position/company you are applying are a good match for both of you.  So the best thing to do is not overthink the questions.  It is very important you plan and allow yourself enough time to take the assessment, as some can take 30-45 minutes to complete.  The last thing you want to happen is not being able to complete the assessment or to be distracted while taking the assessment. It is very important part of the application process so take it seriously, be authentic and Good Luck! 
Answered by Kaitlin, Hiring Expert at Textron Inc., on Wednesday, April 22, 2015
There are more companies now that are utilizing personality and aptitude skill tests. These types of tests are normally sent to the candidate in the beginning of the interview process once they have had a phone screen with the recruiter. It is beneficial for a company to see the candidate’s personality and if they would be a good fit for that type of position based on their results. The aptitude test allows the recruiter/hiring manager see how the candidate will react to different situations and how they perform on tasks. If possible, sit in a quiet room when taking these tests and answer the questions honestly. If you are unsure of what type of questions they may ask you; there are practice tests online that you can take to become more familiar with the content. Good luck!
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