The importance of putting the right people in the right roles within a company cannot be overestimated when it comes to forming successful teams and businesses. Personnel decisions such as these often take place during the recruitment process, with the implementation of skills tests becoming increasingly popular. But it need not end there – personality tests can also be an incredibly valuable tool, both as part of hiring strategy and of managing established workforces.
What are personality tests?
While skills tests can effectively measure how well someone will perform the functions of a job, they cannot predict a person’s personality, values or likelihood to gel with the team. Personality profiles therefore fill this gap, allowing employers to get a better insight into somebody’s attitudes and behaviours. Using these tests can help organisations to assess the personality traits of their applicants - this includes their cooperativeness, how they communicate, their independence, conscientiousness, how they respond to conflict and much more. There are a plethora of personality tests out there, such as the Myers-Briggs test, the Big Five test and the DiSC test – but at SkillsArena, we offer our own Character DNA test which profiles personality types into four colour-coded categories.
The SkillsArena Personality Test Colours
The four unique personality types that we define in an organisation are as follows:
Personality Tests Result - Red:
An individual with a red personality type is one who brings direction, focus and determination to the table, continuously keeping the team on target and challenging the status quo.
Personality Tests Result - Yellow:
Individuals with yellow personality types always offer new ways of solving problems. They make the impossible possible by always finding a way to achieve results and keep up the team spirit.
Personality Tests Result - Green:
Another type of personality that an employee may be categorised as is green. Green personality types are loyal to the team whilst maintaining a sense of balance. Calm and conscientious, they are always capable of seeing both sides of an argument.
Personality Tests Result - Blue:
The final type of personality that we use to define an employee is blue. Blue personality types are individuals who organise a project’s most important details. They are the members of the team who bring a wealth of technical expertise, focusing on the intricacies of a task and acting as the team’s quality controller.
Why personality tests should be used for existing teams as well as during recruitment
When recruiting, it can, of course, be useful to have job candidates take a personality assessment at some point in the process, especially prior to reaching the interview stage. However, in order for the new hire to be a good fit for the team, profiling existing employees first is the most effective way to understand which traits (whether common or complementary) are desirable in a new team member. Doing this allows for better recruitment outcomes in another way too, as job descriptions can be fine-tuned to attract applicants with those specific personality traits. Profiling existing employees can also be used as a way of appropriately dividing responsibilities within a project, ensuring that tasks are completed by those with the most relevant dispositions and preferences. Even if you decide not to include a personality assessment in your company’s application process, there is a case to be made for doing so during onboarding for this same reason; effectively allocating workload once the individual has joined the team. Additionally, waiting until this stage to include a personality test is likely to provide more accurate results, as the hired candidate may answer more honestly than they would if they feel as though there are certainly boxes that they should be ticking. These tests can also be useful indicators when it comes to the question of leadership. While personality tests can be immensely useful when recruiting into established teams to ensure that the new recruit is a culture fit, when offering higher positions to internal employees, personality profiling can be an excellent means of identifying strong leaders, and can help open the door to deserved promotion opportunities and career steps.
Understanding employees/job candidates better
Personality assessments can provide valuable insight into a candidate’s or employee’s values; something that is particularly important when considering a company’s culture. If the company culture of a workplace and the values of its employees do not align, it can lead to a negative work environment for all through differences in goals, conduct and outlook, and can severely impact a business’ productivity. When personality assessments take place, productivity can also be boosted due to managers having a better understanding of each individual’s work preferences. By learning what keeps an employee engaged, what motivates them and how they communicate, those in leadership roles can better understand what employees require to reach their full potential.
Enabling more effective recruitment
Unfortunately, unconscious bias comes into play all too often within recruitment processes. In the same way that skills tests can help to reduce unconscious bias during hiring, personality tests can be implemented as a way of anonymously selecting candidates who possess the character traits necessary for a given position. Using these tests can not only help to eliminate bias, but it can speed up the hiring process by effectively filtering out unsuitable candidates early on. If a company does not wish to include personality testing at the initial hiring stage, it can still be of use once applicants have been selected for an interview. With the details of each interviewee’s personality profile available to them, a panel can better adapt interview questions for each individual and, by extension, make more informed decisions.
Creating a well-balanced workforce
Putting together an effective team is not as simple as identifying people with similar strengths. For example, a group entirely made up of people with a Red Character DNA would lack balance, technical expertise and problem solvers, whereas a team which includes employees of all Character DNA colours is much more likely to work more efficiently and harmoniously. A strong team, therefore, is made up of individuals with different yet complementary personality types, albeit with shared core values that are aligned with the organisational culture that has been put in place.
Playing to a team’s strengths
Despite the importance of having a variety of personalities in a workplace, it remains important to identify whether a team shares any common traits. If an established group of employees works particularly effectively together and a unifying characteristic (not personality type) has been identified, it can help ensure that new additions to the team do not throw a spanner in the works if they also share this with their colleagues. Personality profiling can not only help businesses learn about their employees, but can help employees learn more about themselves, and one of the many aspects of a person's personality that these tests can shed light on is their communication style. Having access to this information can aid communication amongst team members, helping them achieve a smoother working relationship.
Ensuring lower rate of staff turnover
It is no secret that a business' staff turnover should be kept as low as possible. Not only is low turnover more cost-effective for the company and less time-consuming for managers, but teams will rarely flourish if they are not able to become fully established. So, by using personality tests to select team members who work strongly together and placing each individual in an appropriate job role according to their profile, employers can reduce the rate of staff turnover and give teams the best chance at success. We have laid out a few of the benefits of using personality tests in your workplace, but it is no substitute for seeing them for yourself! Take our character profiling test here, also available for remote workers, hiring managers and team managers. Alternatively, get in touch to sign up for one of our interactive Character DNA days for an in-depth insight into how you work within a team.