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The popularity of psychometric testing has been rapidly growing over the past few decades, especially in organizations. In fact, they have become so popular that there are over 2, 500 different psychometric tests on the market today that come in all shapes, sizes, and prices.

And guess what? Their popularity isn’t unwarranted. Organizations are now using them for pretty much everything; recruitment and selection, succession planning, reducing turnover, and even improving collaboration and team productivity.

Is a free psychometric test too good to be true?

I have gathered a few pointers for you to consider before making any decisions.

Differences between psychometric tests

Psychometric tests differ in their content, capabilities, and purpose. Some tests focus on ability, while others on personality. Some are more centered on aptitude, and others on cognitive ability. And more often than not, psychometric tests measure combinations of two or more of these facets.

Before you choose a test, analyze the difference between psychometric and personality tests, and other psychological tests. Determine your needs and what you want to assess, and then identify the test most suitable for you!

Psychometric tests also differ in many other ways. After you have identified your needs, you may be tempted to find a free psychometric test which claims to offer you just that. However, there are some things you should consider before choosing a psychometric test.

More and more, we notice a trend towards the use of a psychometric test or personality test as a convenient way to enhance the selection process and evaluation of the next generation. The range of tests available on the market and the aspects they evaluate may raise questions about the best choices an organization can make.

Things to consider before opting for just any free psychometric test

Choosing the right psychometric test is crucial. Selecting the wrong one would not only get you useless, ineffective results, but also cost you in terms of the time you could have spent getting actual, useful data.

1. Reliability

Reliability is a very important measure of any employee assessment and can be statistically measured. A reliable measure is one that will consistently give you the same result across time, individuals, and situations.

When evaluating the reliability of a psychometric test, make sure your assessment tool is reliable across time (test-retest reliability), and across its measurements (internal consistency).

2. Generalizability

In research, generalizability refers to the extent to which the results of an assessment tool are representative of the entire population from which the sample was drawn.

It is another measure used to determine reliability, and is particularly important when talking about assessments tools in an organizational context.

Here are two questions you should ask when determining how generalizable a test is:

  • Is the sample that was used to develop the psychometric test representative of the entire population? In other words, was it tested using subjects of different ages, gender, ethnicity, nationality, etc.?
  • Do the results obtained represent the entire population that they intended to represent?

Answering these two questions in the affirmative ensures that you are not only getting more precise results, but also that you are complying with human rights legislation and avoiding being discriminatory against certain socio-cultural groups.

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