Employers can use testing methods to assess the skills, aptitude and potential of new hires and employees in the organization. Workers can be tested at the time of hire into the company or when being considered for an advanced position. Testing can help the employer make hiring decisions and find the best worker for every position.
Aptitude tests can measure an employee’s ability to reason, think logically, visualize in three dimensions and understand the principles of machinery. An aptitude test helps the employer determine which employees will have the aptitude to learn the specifics of a job. Aptitude tests do not test the specific knowledge the potential employee possesses; instead, they measure the worker’s ability to learn specific types of job knowledge.
Knowledge tests can measure the level of skill the employee has for a particular position in a company. For example, a knowledge test for an employee in a law office might include legal terminology or legal research techniques. The test determines the employee’s qualifications for a position. Employers hiring employees for financial or accounting positions may use knowledge tests to measure the candidate’s knowledge of the field. For an accounting position, the employer may administer an accounts receivable test, which evaluates the job knowledge the candidate has in this area of accounting. Tests on general bookkeeping or other areas of accounting can help the employer assess the candidate's strengths and weaknesses.
Employers may use skills testing to determine a candidate’s mechanical or assembly abilities. Skills tests are a practical measure of potential employees' abilities to perform the physical duties of a job. Timed assembly tests are one measure of a potential employee’s manual dexterity. A skills test for an electrician or electric worker measures the candidate’s ability to repair electrical systems. Typing tests for secretaries or administrative assistants is another example of a skills test.
Employers can use personality tests to identify job applicants who display the temperament, work ethic and motivation for a position. The test identifies the characteristics that may predict the candidate’s success in a particular position. Some of the personality characteristics that relate to the employee’s performance on the job include initiative, attention to detail, analytical thinking, ambition, dependability and teamwork.