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I am a M.A. in industrial/organizational psychology. Most of my experience has been in human resources and change management. My passion lies in employee assessment, organizational development and employee opinions. Website: www.IanMondrow.com LinkedIn Profile: http://linkd.in/drBYoC

Friday, July 16, 2010

Know your assessment tool

Every industrial psychologist sighs when they hear about an employer using Myers Briggs as selection tools. I once got into a huge debate with a stranger over LinkedIn regarding it. The truth is that Myers Briggs has been proven to have little reliability and thus little validity as well. An assessment can be a powerful tool in selection, but the tool itself must be valid and reliable. In addition to the standard validity, the assessment tool should be able to predict success in a position (criterion validity). An assessment that has not proved criterion validity is at risk for adverse impact. If adverse impact occurs, the hiring organization can face legal consequences since validity was not established.

Content validity can also be used to protect an organization. Content validity means that the organization utilized the results of a job analysis to develop the tool. However, content validity alone does not conclude that the assessment is picking a candidate that is most likely to be successful in the position. It merely infers that the assessment is based on the requirements of the job. Therefore, individuals that pass an assessment with that has only shown content validity may only meet the minimum qualifications.

I stand by the belief of criterion validity! An assessment that has proof to have criterion validity can help an organization identify the high performers in a candidate pool. Criterion validity can be identified using one of two methods:

  1. Current employees can take the assessment and then their scores can be correllated to their performance appraisals.
  2. Candidates can be hired based on their assessment scores. After a performance appraisal, their performance scores are correlated with their assessment scores.
I strongly suggest utilizing an individual with a strong psychometric background to conduct these studies.

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