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Work sample tests in recruitment and selection

Blog Post

Written by John Berry on 2nd May 2017. Revised 16th November 2020.

4 min read


Many recruitment consultants and recruiting managers conduct interviews. But few optimise the selection process. This blog sets out the role of a very special selection instrument – the work sample or skills test. 'Work samples' is one of four tools, which when used together provide the highest predictive validity of all staff selection methods.

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Designer and colour

Recruit like a punter: rationalise

Blog Post

Written by John Berry on 6th March 2018. Revised 16th November 2020.

5 min read


There are three approaches that humans take to make decisions - automatic, neuralistic and rational. Only one - rational - has any place in recruitment and selection. Automatic helps us survive. Neuralistic is fine for incident commanders. But only rational works for hiring decisions. Here's why.

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Horse Race

Talent is a thing – a very measurable, valuable thing

Blog Post

Written by John Berry on 15th January 2018. Revised 16th November 2020.

8 min read


On BBC Radio 4, Margaret Heffernan, the writer and entrepreneur, mounts an attack on the idea that talent is a good predictor of future performance - and hence it should not be used in recruitment selection. Her article is a good listen but a bit muddled. Here we clarify and suggest that talent is not the useless thing that Margaret Heffernan suggests, but a multi-dimensional set of characteristics about each candidate that need to be known before making a job offer.

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Recruiting when there's a skills shortage

Blog Post

Written by John Berry on 2nd January 2018. Revised 16th November 2020.

8 min read


The UK’s academic institutions are not turning out enough software engineers. Demand dramatically exceeds supply. This exemplifies the problem in many domains in the UK. So how do hiring managers find specialists? The key thing is to hire those with the right profile to contribute and learn. Profiling of personal characteristics and search for those must take precedence over high-level statements like ‘must be proficient in coding in MS.NET’. Coding and other specialist competencies can be learned.

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Psychometric testing: a focus on aptitude tests

Blog Post

Written by Sue Berry on 31st May 2017. Revised 16th November 2020.

4 min read


When recruiting a new member of staff you want to select the best person for the job. But how? Use psychometric tools to test for aptitude. [Published September 2014]

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Psychometric Testing

Bringing gamification to recruitment

Blog Post

Written by John Berry on 23rd August 2017. Revised 16th November 2020.

4 min read


Online gaming can be used as part of a selection process. If you play the game well, you get to make a job application. It’s a way of testing the applicant whilst promoting the organisation and informing the applicant about the job. TimelessTime's web-delivered customised assessment delivers quality in selection. It’s not America’s Army but it’s pretty close to CanYouCrackIt. Ultimately it is for that manager to validate what the automated systems are saying. What can gamification offer your firm?

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Psychometric Testing