I think some companies are missing the bug picture when it comes to assessments and their strategic management of their human capital. They often see them as a “check box” to be considered as part of the hiring process and they get pigeonholed there without any real link to broader corporate goals. I think that companies that do this miss a whole dimension of value.
Of course, using assessments for hiring is a strategy in itself, but it’s a very narrow one. Most of the time the information gathered is solely about the candidate, and not correlated to the culture or environment of the organization or team. Candidate information is interesting in isolation, but not actionable unless matched to the employees and teams the candidate will be working with. In fact, assessing candidates as a first step is actually the reverse of how assessments should be used.
At Shadowmatch, we always tell clients to understand “where you are now” before starting to add or make changes to their human capital process; after all, you can’t know how to reach goals if you don’t know what your starting point is. Understanding the foundation of your human capital often highlights and provides solutions to many problems without resorting to churning and hiring (this should be the last thing you do). Also, by understanding the foundation, organizations suddenly start to see exactly how employees and teams impact strategic goals, and suddenly the conversation changes from tactics to strategy.
Why do assessments get pigeonholed so much? I think sometimes it’s just the legacy perception of the past, and sometimes because they have been designed to only perform as a tactical tool. If you are in either of these buckets then you definitely need to take a second look. There is a bigger picture to be seen when you use the right assessments in the right way, and a different conversation that solves strategic vs. tactical business problems.