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Equal Employment Tests Hiring Screening Applicants

We have been approached by a company that sells pre-employment tests. Their brochures look pretty good, but I have heard that there is an issue regarding test validity that can cause troubles for a company. When I mentioned validation to the company representative, he told me not to worry since the tests are all validated. Is that possible?

The company representative did provide you with a valid response on the issue of validation, but there are a few additional items that need to be reviewed. In the area of psychological testing, there are several types of validation, and you need to be certain that the test has criterion-related validity. In a word, does the test predict successful performance on the job, and, importantly, does it do so without discriminating against women and minorities?

If the testing company has conducted validation studies in a workplace similar to yours, in which the work behaviors are similar to yours, in a labor market similar to yours, and the testing company has specifically examined its findings to be sure that they are non-discriminatory, then you may be able to rely on the testing company's assertions about validity. Be sure to obtain and review copies of such studies.

However, unless these criteria are met, you will need to have the tests validated for your company. Failure to do so can cause a broad range of problems, not only in terms of equal employment opportunity issues, but also in terms of the likelihood of rejecting suitable candidates and hiring inappropriate candidates.

Before you select any test company, make sure that company can pass your tests first.

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