The Benefits of Utilizing Outplacement Services

The Benefits of Utilizing Outplacement Services

These are unprecedented times. When you drive through East Texas, it’s like a ghost town, with empty parking lots and dark businesses everywhere. We don’t know when it will end and how far the economic impact of the Coronavirus pandemic will reach, but companies are already floundering, and unemployment numbers are shockingly high.

If you own or run a business, you’re facing hard choices. It’s heartbreaking to have to let staff go, especially when things are already difficult, but you don’t have to just walk them to the door and hope for the best. As a business owner, you can partner with Brelsford Personnel to help them navigate this environment and locate new work with outplacement services.

Replace Fear With Hope

You and your employees have a lot of legitimate worries. Where will you find the money to pay the bills? How much worse will things get before they improve?

If you have to lay off staff members, the anxiety only gets worse for you and them unless, at the same time, you also offer hope. Outplacement services give them tools and resources so they can put processes in place to get back to work as soon as possible. Instead of floundering alone in what feels like a sea of other job searchers, they have the advantage of being supported by a firm with outplacement experience, as well as years of experience helping people find the right employment match.

As an employer, you can’t answer all their questions about what steps they should take next, but you can give them tools to find the answers and the processes to help them get there. The resume and cover letter development skills, interview preparation, and career coaching that employees receive through outplacement services aren’t just temporary help. They gain abilities that will stay with them for a lifetime.

Encourage Your Remaining Workforce

The people who still have a job are thankful, but they are also weighed down by the knowledge this pandemic is far from over. It helps when they know your company will support them whatever may happen.

Managers making tough decisions are disheartened when they have to let people go. It may be the only way to keep the company afloat and keep on at least some of the staff, but it still makes you sick inside. It helps when you know Brelsford Personnel has worked with laid-off employees in the past—one-on-one or in groups—to provide them with the tools, knowledge, and a roadmap to direct them down the path to new opportunities.

Show You Care

Offering your employees outplacement services demonstrates that your company cares about them and their future. Importantly, it also demonstrates your commitment to your community. Another way to show support is by offering a severance package to the degree possible. It shows not only your concern for their well-being but also your appreciation for their loyal service through the years.

Partner for the Future

Things are going to get better. Your business will thrive again. When it does, you’ll need qualified staff to fill those empty desks. In between now and then, your staffing needs might fluctuate.

When you use Brelsford Personnel for outplacement services, you have a strategic partnership. The structure and cost of their outplacement services can be tailored to your objectives, scope, and budget.

Find out what outplacement services we offer when you contact us today.

4 Indispensable Skills for a Customer Service Representative

4 Indispensable Skills for a Customer Service Representative

Customer service can make or break a business. Dimensional Research found consumers rank customer service the number one factor impacting whether or not they trust a business. When Microsoft surveyed consumers around the globe, 96 percent of them said customer service was the deciding factor in brand loyalty.

Good customer service wins trust and loyalty, but poor customer service loses business. Eighty-nine percent of consumers report they’ve switched to a competitor because they had a bad customer service experience. That’s what makes the right customer service representative indispensable to East Texas employers.

At Brelsford Personnel, those employers sometimes ask us to send them workers who will be an asset to their customer service department. Here’s what we’re looking for when we evaluate customer service representatives.

Professionalism

People don’t typically chat with, call or visit customer service because they’re having a nice day and they have positive things to say about what the company offers. They call because they have a problem and they need help. Problems make people feel confused, frustrated, angry and impatient. Often they wear those negative emotions on their sleeves.

A strong customer service representative can act professionally even in emotionally charged situations. They remain polite and friendly, even if the customer is rude. If they can’t resolve the issue or the customer’s emotions get out of control, they know when to transfer the situation to a supervisor.

Empathy

A good customer service representative can turn problems into positive interactions because they empathize with the customer. They can identify the emotions that person is feeling and remember a time they felt that way. It helps them form a connection with the person they’re helping. That connection helps the customer feel heard and eases their frustration.

Strong customer service representatives realize just having to contact support is a headache most people would rather avoid. They’re sensitive to the feelings that come from having to navigate a long phone menu or wait on hold. They make things a little better when they sincerely thank the customer for their patience and loyalty.

Good Listening

Great customer service representatives have strong listening skills that allow them to answer questions quickly. They’re attentive and engaged, even when they’ve been on the clock for hours. Customers know they’re listening because they note small details. They never sound bored or like they’re reading canned responses from a script.

Problem Solving

Sometimes there’s not an easy solution to a customer’s request. It’s not just a matter of issuing a refund or providing an exchange. That’s when a good customer service representative’s problem-solving skills become invaluable.

Consumers appreciate when support representatives take personal responsibility for their care. When you stay positive and don’t give up, customer loyalty often results.

Workers who come with all those traits are so hard to find, employers sometimes wonder if they’re unicorns. Brelsford Personnel has an extensive database with highly qualified customer service representative candidates. Learn more about what we offer employers or get in touch today.

6 Surprising Facts About Commuting in East Texas

6 Surprising Facts About Commuting in East Texas

The drive to and from to work cuts into your personal time five days a week. If you have a long commute that means you have to get up earlier, spend more on gas and stay away from home longer. Unfortunately, commute time has been increasing for Americans and Texans for more than a decade. So how does yours stack up? Let’s compare.

Most East Texans Have a Shorter than Average Commute

Across the nation, the average time for the drive to work is 27.1 minutes. That means in a Monday through Friday work week, people who take two weeks of vacation and work the rest of the time spend an annual 225.8 hours getting back and forth to the office.

In Texas, the average commute time is 26.7 minutes. That’s just slightly less than average, but still eats up almost an hour of every workday for the round trip.

Some States Have Speedier Drives

An American Community Study from the U.S. Census Bureau found people in South Dakota get to work fastest, averaging 16.6 minutes for their morning drive. Wyoming and Montana aren’t far behind, with around 17 minutes one way. Alaska comes in third at 18.5 minutes.

It Could Be Worse

If you work in Washington D.C., the average time it takes to get to the office is a whopping 43.6 minutes. New Yorkers have about a 35-minute commute.

Commute Time Varies Widely Within Texas Counties

Several East Texas counties have one city that acts as a hub for area workers, with communities clustered at varying distances from that hub. For example, Tyler acts as the major employment center for Smith County, Longview employs many Gregg County residents and people from all over Bowie County travel to Texarkana. Those larger cities are also where most of the population clusters, shortening their commute.

That means averages don’t tell the whole story. In Smith County, while the average is 23.8 minutes, 13.1 percent of workers take less than 10 minutes to get to work. However, almost a quarter of employees drive up to an hour to get to their workplace. Both groups are far from the average.

Smith County Workers Come From All Over

The Tyler area provides jobs for people from all over the region. As of 2017, of the 103,344 people working in Smith County, almost half of them (46,989 people) lived in another adjacent county. About 54 percent live in Smith County, the rest drive from Van Zandt, Henderson, Anderson, Cherokee, Wood, Upshur, Gregg and Rusk Counties.

Commuting is Safer in Texas

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration Fatality Analysis Reporting System (FARS) compiled data from 2012 and 2016 to analyze when and where people had fatal traffic accidents while driving back and forth to work. Texas was in the bottom 10. New Hampshire, South Dakota and Oklahoma topped the list of states where fatal crashes occurred during commuting hours.

Job Search Emotions – Surviving the Roller Coaster

Job Search Emotions - Surviving the Roller Coaster

Looking for a new job is exhilarating and exhausting, electrifying and draining. Sometimes it takes a while to find the right fit. Every time you fill out an application or submit your resume, your emotions yo-yo from hope to nervousness to frustration to excitement.

If you know what’s normal, it can help you survive the bumps and curves. Let’s look at common job search emotions, and then talk about how to make the ups and downs a little less extreme.

Normal Emotions During a Job Hunt

Whether you’re a 16-year-old applying for your very first job or a seasoned member of the East Texas workforce, these emotions are all completely normal.

  • Excitement – You’re energized by the possibility of change and ready to go find that great new job.
  • Overwhelmed – When you start to realize how many choices there are and all the work you face finding a new employer, it can feel like too much.
  • Fixation – You apply at one company that seems like a perfect fit, and suddenly all you can think about is working there. You feel like you can’t wait to hear from them and your life just might be over if they don’t offer you the job.
  • Hope – The employer calls you for more information or to request an interview. You see a potential light at the end of the job search tunnel.
  • Frustration – Time goes by and you’re tired of knocking on doors, tired of waiting to hear something, just fed up with the whole process.
  • Impatience – You’ve lost track of how many times you checked your email, voicemail and text messages. It feels like you should have heard something by now.
  • Deliriously happy and relieved – You finally hear you got the job.

Tips for Staying Focused

Just recognizing what you’re feeling is normal will go a long way toward making things easier. Most people connect what they do for work with who they are as an individual, so it’s understandable if you feel unsettled when things are up in the air.

If you’re out of work, treat job hunting as an actual job. Make sure your resume is mistake-proof and accurately showcases your skills. Use your contacts to find openings that might not yet be posted. Apply for more than one position at a time so you have a chance of hearing back from multiple employers.

Recognize when you don’t get the response you hope for, most of the time it isn’t because you aren’t likeable or skilled at what you do. Sometimes organizations promote from within. Other times they’re looking for something specific that wasn’t on your resume. When you stay positive and keep moving forward, eventually you’ll find the right fit.

Work With a Staffing Agency

At Brelsford Personnel, you’re not just a list of qualifications on a piece of paper. Our primary mission is to provide truly personal staffing services. We love what we do for work, and we thrive on helping others find ways to do the same. Search our open positions and see if we can help you find the job of your dreams.

Virus Proof Your Workplace in 4 Steps

Virus Proof Your Workplace in 4 Steps

The news is full of unsettling information about Coronavirus spread, and that’s likely to escalate in the next few weeks. But the truth is, there are almost always germs floating around, and no one wants to risk getting sick.

Bosses and managers can emphasize good habits and show workers they care about their overall well-being by prioritizing good health. Protect against both bacterial infections and viruses in the workplace when you follow these steps.

Educate Everyone

It’s okay for them to think of you as the company germophobe if it leads to better health. At your next meeting, spend a few minutes giving a refresher course on how microscopic organisms like bacteria, viruses, fungi and protozoa spread. Then explain how regular, thorough hand washing kills them.

Most germs, including Coronavirus, spread through moisture droplets that pass from person to person. Sneezes, coughs, saliva, even breath can transfer infection. Since with many illnesses, hosts can be asymptomatic and still contagious, employees should be proactive about guarding themselves and their co-workers from the risk of infection.

Supply Germ Fighting Products

It doesn’t do any good to cover your mouth when you cough or sneeze if after you do, you touch doorknobs, light switches and shared computers. It’s better to catch those germs in a tissue, but employees don’t always have much warning before a coughing or sneezing fit. Help them out when you stock up on tissues and place them where they’re easy to reach.

Place hand sanitizer right next to the tissues. Grab a squirt now and then yourself to subtly encourage others to do the same.

Pass out packets of sanitizing wipes so staff can disinfect their personal workspaces. If employees eat lunch in a breakroom or other shared area, leave a tub of wipes there as well.

Encourage Sick Staff to Stay Home

Some employees don’t call in when they aren’t feeling well because they’re afraid it will reflect negatively on their performance. Others feel like they need to “tough it up” and power through, so they take medication to mask symptoms and report to work as usual.

However, it’s better for everyone if sick employees stay home. They’ll get well faster and won’t risk infecting their co-workers. Make sure your team knows you encourage them to take time off if they get sick.

Make Disinfecting Easier

Virus and bacteria-laden droplets can stay infectious for hours, even sometimes days after they land on surfaces. Disinfectant kills them, but if your workplace is cluttered, they have plenty of places to lurk in the mess.

Consider requiring employees to clear their desks at the end of the day and to not leave personal items in shared work areas. That will make it easier for your cleaning crew to thoroughly disinfect.

When everyone works together, germs don’t have a chance to spread. You significantly reduce everyone’s risk of getting sick at the office.

How to Know if Job Hopping is Hurting Your Opportunities

How to Know if Job Hopping is Hurting Your Opportunities

Nobody ever sets out to bounce around between employers, sometimes life just works out that way. If you’ve made a few job changes and you have a reasonable explanation, it might not hurt, but if it’s a pattern, it can be a red flag to employers.

So how do you know if recent job changes are keeping you from finding a better job? How much change is too much? Is there anything you can do if you’ve made several moves in the recent past? Read on to find answers.

How Much is Too Much?

Last year the Bureau of Labor Statistics released the results of a national longitudinal survey that sheds some light on averages. They looked at people born between 1957 and 1964, individuals who have had plenty of time to experience job movement. On average, they held 12.3 jobs after they turned 18. They were employed 78 percent of the time. When they were working, 75 percent of their jobs ended in fewer than five years.

In contrast, people born in the 1980s had worked at an average of six jobs by the time they reached their 26th birthday. People are changing jobs more frequently than they did in the past, especially younger workers.

Some movement is expected. Employers aren’t looking as much at your overall number of jobs as the time you’ve spent at each one. When employers see you’ve had multiple jobs and you’ve been at each of them for a year or less, that’s when job hopping becomes a problem.

How Long Should You Stay at a Job?

The Bureau of Labor Statistics published averages for that too. In a 2018 survey, median employee tenure was 4.3 years. Most of the time, older workers stayed longer in one position (an average of 10 years for those between 55 and 64), and younger workers moved sooner (workers between 25 and 34 changed at about 2.8 years). It’s not a problem if you quit one job soon after your hire date, what concerns employers is when quitting becomes a pattern.

It could hurt your chances of getting a new position if you quit before your one year anniversary unless you have a good reason. Employers will understand if you had to move when your spouse got transferred or if your company shut down, but if you changed frequently because you were bored or you didn’t like your co-workers, they could feel you’re not going to stick around at their company either.

What You Can Do at Your Next Interview

If you’re looking for a new job because you feel like your current situation isn’t working for you, take a hard look at what you don’t like now and what you want for your future. If you’re looking for a company with more advancement opportunities, better technology, a more flexible schedule or some other benefits, only apply with employers who offer what you’re looking for. Then don’t turn in your notice with your current boss until you’ve found a job that will be a long term fit.

Ask questions at your next interview to learn about the benefits, opportunities and culture of the company you’re considering. Let your interviewer lead, but look for signs you could be happy working there long-term. If you jump into a new role just thinking short-term, you might find yourself unhappy again in a few months, but with a little patience and research, you could end up on a rewarding career path.

Brelsford Personnel has positions with the opportunity for long-term career growth, and we take the time to talk with candidates about their career objectives. On our website you’ll find resume writing tips, dress code guidelines for the job search and interview tips to help you land a job you’ll be happy with for years to come.

Change In the Wind at the 2020 Energy Summit of Northeast Texas

Change In the Wind at the 2020 Energy Summit of Northeast Texas

Mark your calendars now for the 10th annual Energy Summit of Northeast Texas on March 24. In the past decade, this event sponsored by the Tyler Area Chamber of Commerce Energy Committee has become the most well-attended and recognized regional energy conference. Here’s what you need to know about this year’s event.

What’s Changing in Texas Energy

This year’s theme is Texas Energy Matters: The Changing Face of Texas Energy. The conference has always offered the latest insights on oil and gas. Now for the first year ever, part of the focus of the Energy Summit of Northeast Texas will be on renewable energy. Consider these statistics:

  • Texas ranks number one in the nation for installed wind capacity and number of wind turbines.
  • Texas, Kansas, Iowa and Oklahoma, just four states, account for 52 percent of the nation’s wind electricity generation. Of that, Texas generates more than 25 percent.
  • The U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) predicts by 2050, renewables will provide almost half the world’s electricity, with wind energy making up nearly 35 percent of that total.

Oil and gas won’t be going away anytime soon, but the mix of energy sources is changing. There’s so much room for growth in terms of renewable energy. It’s an exciting topic Energy Summit speakers will explore in-depth.

Why 10 Years of Energy Summits

The Tyler Area Chamber of Commerce Energy Committee has sponsored the Energy Summit of Northeast Texas 10 years in a row to raise awareness about the industry in general and to highlight its connection with jobs in Northeast Texas.

“Most people relate to the energy industry only when they are filling their car up with gas,” said Gates Brelsford, Chairperson for the event. “But it’s one of the most important industries in Northeast Texas. Not just in Tyler but in Longview, Kilgore, Gladewater and the surrounding areas.” As much as one in six area jobs are tied to the Texas oil and gas industry.

The impact of Texas energy spreads far beyond Northeast Texas. “We’re literally changing the future of countries” says Todd Staples, President of the Texas Oil and Gas Association and one of the event’s speakers, “because we are making affordable, reliable, clean-burning energy available for them.”

Who Will Be Speaking

At the Northeast Texas Energy Summit, this list of current speakers (to date) will address the significant changes and adaptations happening now in the industry:

  • Wayne Christian – Chair of the Railroad Commission of Texas (RRC). This state agency regulates the oil and gas industry, industry safety and surface mining. Because of RCC’s influence on oil and natural gas pricing and supply, it might be one of the most important regulatory entities in the United States.
  • Brent Bennett, Ph.D. – Energy Storage Consultant for the Texas Public Policy Foundation. The challenge when it comes to renewable energy involves storing harvested wind and solar energy and putting it into the grid. This Texas native shares his expert knowledge in utility-scale energy storage systems.
  • The Honorable Jason Isaac – This four-time State Representative is now Senior Manager and Distinguished Fellow of Life: Powered at the Texas Public Policy Foundation. He’ll speak on the topic of Raising America’s Energy IQ.
  • BP Strategic Planning Group – A representative will share with attendees The Impact of Renewables on Global Energy Demand.

Who Should Plan to Attend

The 2020 Northeast Texas Energy Summit is for anyone who has an interest in developments in the energy industry. Last year’s event had more than 450 attendees and speakers integral to the industry, with similar numbers expected this year. Event participants weren’t just from oil and gas companies, they were a broad mix of representatives from accounting firms, banks, government agencies, law firms and other business entities.

Sponsorship opportunities are still available and are a way to help raise awareness of top energy industry issues while getting your name in front of a large audience. The Conference takes place in the Green Acres Baptist Church Crosswalk Conference Center on March 24 from 10:30 to 2:00. For more information or to secure tickets, call the Tyler Chamber of Commerce at (903)592-1661.

How to Help New Employees Feel Welcome

How to Help New Employees Feel Welcome

As an employer with a new hire, you spent time and resources recruiting, interviewing and hiring that staff member. You’re hopeful you made the right choice, but there have been times in the past things didn’t go as planned and the new hire didn’t stick around.

That may be due to what happened when the new employee reported to work. During the first days of employment, they are evaluating you just as much as you’re evaluating them. A third of the time something goes wrong, with 33 percent of new hires quitting in the first 90 days.

It takes courage to get through the first few weeks in a new position because the unknown can feel awkward and frustrating. The expectations, the technology and the people all come with a learning curve. New hires hope to make a good first impression, and you can do the same by offering a friendly welcome.

Welcome Employees Before They Start

Of the new hires that quit, a large percentage hit the door because the job wasn’t what they expected. One way to keep that from happening in your workplace is to make sure employees understand what you’re about to require from them. Double-check to see if your job posting fits the actual responsibilities and that your new hire is qualified to fulfill them.

You can make a positive first impression before new staff reports for duty by being the first to reach out. Send a brief personal note via email congratulating them on being the top pick and stating you’re looking forward to working with them. Include information on how to get in touch if they have questions before their start date. If your company is active on social media, send them a link to your feed and invite them to participate.

When you reach out, you can also send first-day paperwork so they can complete it digitally. Doing so allows them to fill out forms from the comfort of their own home instead of having to do it with paper and pencil on their first day.

If possible, send them an outline of what they can expect when they report for duty. If you’re scheduling an orientation or safety training, let them know ahead of time. Explain your employee parking system if you have one.

Positive First Day Impressions

You want a productive employee, and your new hire wants to know exactly what he or she is supposed to be doing. Have a plan in place that meets both your needs to eliminate the uncertainty and awkwardness that makes onboarding hard on everyone.

Prepare their workstation before they arrive. If the last person to sit at that desk left things behind, clear them away. Make sure the phone and computer are hooked up and you have login information for systems they’ll need to access.

Assign each new-hire a mentor. Greet them as soon as they walk in the door and introduce them to that person. Then have their mentor provide a tour. Even if your office is small, show them where to find the coffee pot, the restroom, the coat closet etc. Explain office quirks like how to work the recalcitrant copy machine or what to do when the vending machine goes on the fritz. Then offer on the job training starting with simple tasks. Allow them to gradually settle in and develop confidence.

Welcoming Employees Beyond Day One

Day two might be even more challenging for new hires. Initial training is out of the way and the new has already started to wear off, but it’s too soon to have built relationships or become comfortable with their role and responsibilities.

Make sure their mentor continues to show them the ropes. As their supervisor, check in on them to see how they’re doing and ask if they have any questions. Listen if they have concerns. Over time, your effort will turn what could be an uncomfortable interaction into a positive experience.

Brelsford Personnel helps East Texas employers with everything from recruiting to onboarding. Find out more about our services here.

5 Must-Have Resume Sections (And 3 Optional Ones)

5 Must-Have Resume Sections (And 3 Optional Ones)

What are your career goals in 2020? A well-written resume can help you reach them. It’s a critical document in every job search, and for some people that’s intimidating. That’s why we’ve created an easy-to-follow template that will work for almost any position. Here are the basic sections every resume needs, along with many of the optional categories that can help get your foot in the door.

Always Include These Resume Sections

Make your resume visually appealing and simple to understand so employers can see what you offer at a glance. Use easy-to-read font, high-quality paper and consistent formatting. Here’s what every resume should include.

The Header

The top section of your resume should include your full name and all of your contact information. Use large letters for your name, then list your name, phone number, cell phone number and email address. Including your physical address or social media handles is optional. Avoid using your current work email address on a resume, and make sure the email address you do provide makes a good first impression.

Summary/Objective

In this section, briefly communicate what you’re looking for and why you’re the best pick. Start with an objective statement that includes the job title you’re applying for. Then state two or three of your top qualifications or most relevant skills. Conclude by letting the employer know what they stand to gain by choosing you.

Education Section

This resume block is pretty straightforward. Start with your highest completed degree and work backward. If you earned a college degree, you don’t need to list your high school diploma.

Include the type of degree you earned, your major and minor, and the name of the school from which you received your degree. If you received academic honors, list those as well.

List licenses and certifications in much the same way. State the name of your certification, the institution from which you received it, the date you became licensed or certified and applicable location information. For example, if you’re only licensed or certified in a certain state or region, clarify where you can use that education or qualification.

Work Experience

Again, start with your most recent job experience and work backward. Include this information for each entry:

  • Employer name
  • Your job title
  • Dates employed
  • Job tasks and responsibilities

Under each employer, highlight your achievements using data wherever possible. If you increased sales by 15 percent, reduced marketing costs by $3,000 a year or saved 100 man-hours every month, let that hard evidence speak in your favor.

Skills

Employers are looking for candidates who already possess the skills the position requires. They’re looking for abilities like problem solving, teamwork, organization, flexibility and strong time management. Evaluate your strengths and make a list, then revisit the skills section of your resume every time you apply for a job.

Look at the skills each employer lists on the job description. If you have those skills, make sure they’re on your list.

Optional Resume Sections

Almost all employers are looking for the above information on your resume. You also might want to include the following optional sections:

  • Awards
  • Volunteer work
  • Professional associations

How do you know whether or not you should include optional sections? Ask yourself how each relates to the position. Your first place award at the state chili cook-off doesn’t make you a more attractive candidate at a CPA firm, but it definitely counts if you’re applying to be the kitchen manager at a local restaurant. If you’re applying for a social worker position, your volunteer experience at that children’s summer camp says something about your heart.

When your hobbies or professional associations show you’re more qualified, connected or passionate, include them on your resume. If they aren’t connected to the position for which you’re applying, leave them off.

More Job Resources

If you’re looking for East Texas jobs, we want to help. Find more resume tips in our online resources or browse our available positions today.

What Personality Tests Reveal About Job Candidates

What Personality Tests Reveal About Job Candidates

Recruiters, employment agencies and HR departments are split over whether or not it’s beneficial to use a personality test to evaluate job candidates. Pre-employment personality testing is designed to evaluate character traits and temperament to find new hires that will be an exact fit for teams and departments. It seems like a solid hiring practice, since when a person’s temperament and interests are suited to a position, he or she stays more engaged.

But what do personality tests really reveal? Are they accurate, and should you be incorporating them in your interview process? What’s the best way to remove the guesswork and hire the right fit for your organization?

Most Important Thing to Know About Personality Testing

Personality testing for work has been around for a long time. Experts continue to publish new research and new test variations regularly appear. What doesn’t seem to change is the data indicating personality testing alone gives some insight, but isn’t enough to evaluate fit.

Researcher Frank Schmidt conducted a meta-analysis of productivity data and selection practices over the past 100 years to identify the correlation between test scores and predicted job performance. His research showed when employers base hiring just on an interview, reference checks and a personality test, often that wasn’t enough to make accurate predictions about job performance.

Personality tests are one hiring tool, but they don’t offer a complete picture. Plus, there are thousands of personality test variations to choose from, and they’re not all created equal. Schmidt found personality testing works best when you choose a test designed for evaluating job candidates and combine it with other types of testing.

Candidates Can Manipulate Data

Do a quick search that includes personality testing for work and you’ll find first page results with tips on how to pass, fake or beat the evaluation in order to get the job. With a little bit of research and practice, candidates can sometimes skew answers so the data shows they’re a better fit than they really are.

It’s not that most candidates are deceptive, they just already have a sense of what employers want to hear. Taking a test alone causes anxiety. If they “pass,” they have a shot at the position. If they “fail,” their hope of a job with your company goes out the window.

Some Personality Tests Aren’t For Hiring

The popular Four Quadrant or 4-Q personality test has been around in some variation since 450 BC. In all that time, it hasn’t changed that much. Today’s candidates choose words from a list that are most and least like their preferences.

Potential candidates who want to make a good impression simply choose the words they think best align with the job description. Plus, 4-Q tests tend to measure “states” or emotions and feelings. Those are subject to change.

Another well-known personality test for work is the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator, a questionnaire employees complete to reveal how they make choices and interact with others. It offers insight into the type of work candidates like to do, but doesn’t evaluate how proficient they are at anything. Since the answers are open-ended, candidates can reply based on what they think the test administrator wants to hear.

Both types of tests can be useful after hiring to better understand employees and build stronger teams. Employers might use them to better understand communication habits, to plan future staff development or to measure traits important to customer satisfaction. They just aren’t a reliable indicator of whether or not employees are a good fit.

Choosing the Best Personality Assessments

The best personality tests on the market measure traits, not emotions. They include control questions or a lie-detector scale that tips off the administrator candidates might be trying to work the system. Strong personality assessments for hiring allow you to compare scores across candidates and traits. Test vendors can provide data to prove their test is bias-free, in compliance with local and federal guidelines and that it’s reliable and accurate.

Hiring the Right Fit Every Time

Hiring is time-consuming and expensive. Hiring the wrong person is even more so. When you work with Brelsford Personnel, we put decades of hiring expertise to work for you. We match candidate personality and skills with employer requirements and culture for a good fit. Let us know your staffing needs when you get in touch today.