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Employee Hiring, Development, and Retention

Use Employment Assessments To Prevent Interviewer Bias

Mike Poskey | February 7, 2020

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Most interviewers make up their minds about the candidate within the first 3 minutes of the interview. But that decision is only as reliable as the input used to make it. Humans naturally have biases that we apply to things and people. To ensure your interviewers are making accurate hiring decisions, you need to remove the risk of biases.

The best way to do this is to have as many data points as possible, and several of those data points should come from an objective hiring tool like an assessment. Incorporating an assessment with the candidate's résumé, references, and behavioral interview will set your hiring team up for the greatest success.

Follow Three Rules When Administering Employment Assessments

  • Be consistent. No matter what type of assessment you are using (e.g., cognitive, personality, emotional intelligence, etc.), it's important to be consistent. You must use the assessment at the same point in the hiring process for every job applicant. Doing this ensures all candidates are treated equally, giving everyone the same advantage.
  • Prepare for the face-to-face interview. The best time to use an assessment varies on whether you are using an applicant tracking system (ATS) or not. The rule of thumb is to use it early in the process, before the first face-to-face interview.
    • With an ATS: Using an ATS that is integrated with your assessment, administer the assessment at the system-recommended time during the hiring process.
    • Without an ATS: Review applications and select candidates for screening by phone or video interview. Based on the results from the initial screening, administer the assessment prior to the face-to-face interview.
  • Follow the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission best practices. Administer the assessment as early as possible to create a level playing field for all candidates. Do not use an assessment as the sole basis of making an employment decision—use the assessment in addition to the résumé, references, and interview(s). Document your hiring process and follow the same procedures every time for every candidate.


Assessments are very helpful in making more accurate hiring decisions. They remove biases, provide objective data points, and level the playing field for all candidates. Just be sure to follow best practices when using assessments to avoid any litigation or unfair situations.

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