Psycho tests for work – where to find them?

Mental capacity tests are among the most useful and valid methods for predicting how successful a candidate will be at his job and job training for various professions, under the condition they are selected correctly. When testing candidates for business purposes psychologists most commonly measure verbal, numerical, perceptive, spatial and general cognitive abilities. Psychologists also examine and measure various aspects of the person’s personality, his attention, concentration and various other psychological traits. In addition, employers also sometimes also test physical ability, knowledge, and sometimes they check specific types of work activities.

Examinees know that during the interviews psychological tests are generally conducted, so they often search for „psycho tests“, „job tests“ or „interview tests” on the Internet. They seldom ask and sometimes even demand that we send them tests so they could practice the said skills. Due to numerous inquiries we feel the need to stress the following:

According to the Law on psychological work and the Rulebook on psycho diagnostic instruments the psychological tests used for staff selection (or for assessing and staff selection) are procedural and interpretative complicated instruments and because of this fall into the category of protected psycho diagnostic instruments. So, the tests used for staff assessment or for assessing work ability cannot be found on the Internet! Nor can they be applied by someone who is not a psychologist!

Situation is so serious that for a large number of tests even psychologists themselves have to take specific, additional training. Accordingly, if a person doing the job testing is not a psychologist, they are in violation of the Law on psychological work and you can sue the person, because this is the same as a laic doing a diagnosis and treating, for example, a patient with a heart problem! It is incredible, but even today there are people who (probably because they are not informed) use tests they found on the Internet in order to select candidates for employment.

Except for the psychological tests in order to assess the candidates for a certain job, tests measuring the current level of knowledge or the level of skills required for performing a certain task are also used. These are proficiency tests and working rehearsal tests, that is, tests and rehearsals of skills acquired and experiences in real samples of work assignments.

Proficiency tests are comprised mostly out of specific questions to determine the level of knowledge regarding a specific matter regarding business tasks and responsibilities. These kinds of tests are usually paper-based and lately the computer administering is becoming more and more popular. Samples of proficiency tests are tests for accountants and IT specialists. Proficiency tests usually have a high level of accuracy, however, without psychological tests we cannot find out important information on candidates’ abilities and preferences and the way the worker will possibly behave in different work conditions.

Work samples, work tests are situations in which candidates are asked to demonstrate or do one or more work activities. These kinds of tests usually have a high level of relevance in relation to the aimed (targeted) work. For example, you can ask a candidate for a job of an office machines mechanic to do a diagnosis of a malfunctioning machine. The candidates usually believe these kinds of tests are fairer than the other kinds of testing.

However, if we use work tests as a basis for making prognoses on the work successfulness of the candidates – we will probably make a mistake – because we are ignoring a whole specter of listed traits which can affect how successfully will a candidate perform his work. Besides, the whole procedure, from choosing the work sample to conducting the testing and evaluating the work done can be extremely complicated and the price of the procedure high.