Globally, the pandemic era phenomenon known as the Great Resignation shows no signs of slowing down with senior executives planning to leave their organisations in the next two years, according to a recent report released by KellyOCG, the outsourcing and consulting business of Kelly®. The 2022 KellyOCG Global Workforce Report – Re: work uncovers the disconnect between evolving employee expectations and the support firms provide.
To better retain talent after they join the organisation, in India, almost all our clients use either personality or technical assessment tools as part of their hiring processes. The industries where we see these assessment tools used often are technology, finance, and BPOs.
The assessment tools help narrow down the pool of candidates to those who are a better fit for the role or the organisation, thus reducing the number of interview rounds and shortening the hiring timeline. Having a diverse and inclusive hiring process can open up more talent channels that organisations could be missing for the workforce skills that they need. Thus, it is vital for employers to have a proactive plan to promote, attract, and engage talent from a diverse pool of candidates.
There are many leadership tools in the market used to assess employees’ leadership skills. These assessment tools provide additional perspectives besides work performance and co-workers’ feedback of the employee. In addition, organisations can consider assigning such talent with projects to better assess the necessary skills the organisations are looking for in their future leaders.
“Assessment platforms help find better fit candidates when there is a high volume of applicants or when companies would like to get a better understanding of the profile or personality of the candidates. However, the assessment tools do not directly address the talent crunch issue in the market.”
In India, the most common assessment tool used is Mettl as it customises the assessments based on the needs of the clients, whether it is a functional skills assessment or a personality assessment. For coding skills assessment, Hackerank is commonly used by our clients.
For junior positions, the assessment is meted out to candidates before the first interview to filter out the candidates with the right skills and capabilities as required by the role. On average, minimally 20-25 percent of the candidates are filtered out after the assessment.
For middle to senior management positions, personality assessment tools are usually administered after the first interview or later in the interview process. The main objective of the assessment is to know the candidates’ personality, leadership skills, and work styles to better identify where the candidate would be a good fit in the organisation.
The Covid-19 impact
Before the pandemic, 100 percent of our clients administered assessment tests for junior roles. Currently, only 20 percent of our clients have an assessment test in place for junior IT and recruiter roles due to the talent crunch for these two roles. It has been observed that the candidates drop out of the hiring process at a higher rate when they know there will be an assessment test. So companies are now focused on getting candidates to fill the roles rather than getting the right fit for the organisation.
In the current market situation, KellyOCG’s clients have less than 5 percent of open positions which employ assessments before the first interview round to filter out the candidates on the basis of their coding expertise. For these roles, we are submitting close to 700 profiles (20 profiles per position) on a daily basis but only 10-12 percent of candidates take the assessment test. The rest of them i.e. around 90 percent drop out even after confirming their attendance for the test. The reason is, that they have other interviews lined up which don’t mandate an assessment test.
As for personality assessment tests, about 40 percent of our clients use them in hiring. Generally, we see that candidates do not mind going through personality assessment tests as organisations will be sharing the findings with them. The candidates themselves would like to have a deeper understanding of their personality profiling.
As mentioned, talent for IT and recruiter roles are in short supply. This is partly due to Covid as many business transactions and work processes have digitalised resulting in huge demand for various IT roles. And when companies have a huge demand for those roles and are unable to hire, there is a strong demand for recruiters to help with the hiring challenges companies face, particularly post-pandemic as hiring demands ramp up again.
Assessment platforms help find better fit candidates when there is a high volume of applicants or when companies would like to get a better understanding of the profile or personality of the candidates. However, the assessment tools do not directly address the talent crunch issue in the market.
Presently, companies are most eager to hire candidates with IT experience, such as those with coding experience, hardware or software skills, etc.
What can one do to improve these assessment tests?
- Make it competitive for candidates
“We should also try to reintroduce the assessments for high-volume roles, after the first round of interviews so that they are not seen as an elimination tool. The assessment scores should be shared with the candidates to get a sense of their ability level, which will help them upskill as their career progresses.”
We still need to highlight the importance of these assessments for roles that are not subject to the current talent crunch – in fact for as many roles as possible – as this will create awareness, competitiveness, and readiness among candidates.
We should also try to reintroduce the assessments for high-volume roles, after the first round of interviews so that they are not seen as an elimination tool. The assessment scores should be shared with the candidates to get a sense of their ability level, which will help them upskill as their career progresses.
- Present bench strength of key industries
Only services companies have managed to keep a bench strength of about 10-15 percent in the past, and other organisations create this bench with fresh campus hires to create a talent pool. Keeping a bench may help the organisations to some extent. However, working in collaboration with colleges before hiring them and creating that bench assessment and training resources will help us to stay ahead with these skill gaps.
Year of Incorporation: Kelly India – 2001
Number of Employees: As of May 2022 – 245 FTEs
Founder: William Russel Kelly
Business Line: KellyOCG is the leading advisor of talent supply chain strategies and workforce solutions
Hiring Pipeline: Average of 25 resources joining us every month
Workforce Pie (in %): Operation- 77%, Global Resources – 18%, Support – 4%, Sales 1%,
Key HR Factor: 65% women employees, HRMS tool, No ESOPS, Employee benefits – R&R programs, Wellness, 24/7, free EAP services provided for all employees