Around for about 50 years and widely used by various companies across the U.S., the Caliper Profile evaluates how an individual’s traits will relate to his or her job performance. There are a few different types of questions. Candidates encounter a series of statements from which they must determine the statement that best matches their perspective. Other questions require them to choose the statement that least reflects their perspective.
There may also be true/false questions, as well as questions with a five degree of agreement scale. The Caliper Profile is unique in the sense that it examines both positive and negative qualities to provide a well-rounded picture of an individual.
This test was created a few decades ago, when research by Gallup suggested that personality assessments focused too much on weaknesses. Based on responses to 177 statements that speak to 34 positive traits that the test-taker might possess — from discipline to communication — the test identifies the top 5 strengths out of all 34 that most strongly represent the prospective employee.
Conducted as an online assessment, two statements are presented on each screen of the test. Respondents must pick the statement that best describes them. They can note that it “strongly describes” them, that their connection to both statements is “neutral,” or it falls somewhere in between.
Unlike the Caliper, Gallup looks at strengths that are real indicators of success, rather than simply flushing out people’s negatives and downside. For example, you may rank highly in positivity, implying that you’d be stellar in a position that has you dealing with rejection on a regular basis — such as at a call center, or in fundraising. Or perhaps, you score as an achiever, suggesting that you might naturally excel at Type-A gigs, like an executive or another high-level manager role.
Myers-Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI)
One of the most well-known tools for mapping employee personalities is the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI). According to the test’s publisher, 89 of the Fortune 100 companies use the MBTI. The MBTI measures whether an employee’s personality leans toward one of two tendencies in the following groupings: Extraversion vs. Introversion, Intuition vs. Sensing, Thinking vs. Feeling, and Judging vs. Perceiving. An employee can fall into one of 16 personality types.
The Myers-Brigg Type Indicator allows employers to determine if a candidate would be a good cultural fit for the company and thus be able to transition into a team with ease. The MBTI has 93 questions that are presented at a 7th-grade reading level. The questions are formatted in an A/B format, meaning a question will ask if you prefer A over B.
The Myers-Briggs Type Indicator is not a normalized exam, nor are the questions scaled. It has not been proven valid for recruitment use, but is more appropriate for understanding how a candidate may perform in a group.
The SHL Occupational Personality Questionnaire
One of the most established workplace personality assessments, the SHL Occupational Personality Questionnaire has been around for more than 30 years. Now owned by CEB, the questionnaire helps employers identify behaviors that directly impact job performance — and candidates who are most likely to be dependable workers based on these behaviors.
The test is comprised of 104 questions that measure 32 specific personality characteristics. These are clustered within three domains — relationships with people, thinking style, and feelings and emotions — which align with various occupations.
The Predictive Index (PI) is a behavioral assessment tool that determines the unique motivators for workplace behavior of employees and helps employers make informed and sound hiring decisions to benefit a company as well as the employees. PI tests are a modern way for employers to pick out the strongest potential employees.
Since online applications can be easy to falsify — and there is no personal attachment or indication of personality (as in handwriting) — employers need to see what skills you truly possess. The developers of the test claim it is based on reliable scientific research and therefore eliminates the element of human bias, making it highly reliable in the eyes of hiring managers.
Used in a variety of industries — including finance, manufacturing, hospitality, and transportation — the Predictive Index assessment takes approximately 10 minutes to complete, and the results are interpreted immediately. This test utilizes different statements to measure your personality; the best way to answer is to be as honest as possible. Avoiding strong answers and sticking with neutral options results in a lower score.
Next time we will conclude our series on pre-employment testing with highlighting additional tests