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A workplace is were individuals of different age groups, work experience, talents and cognitive abilities work together to bring about growth, innovation, and development in the organisation they work in.  But how often does an organisation’s workforce comprise of people who are well suited for the job and the company culture? There are many psychological aspects to be taken into consideration while hiring a candidate who has the skills as well as mental abilities to perform and excel in a job. 

Recruiters use traditional interview practices and also rely on references received through job portals, recruitment agencies, recommendation by friends or colleagues, etc., to reach out to a potential candidate and hope to find a right fit. Often recruiters rely on these sources to get a recommendation of someone with a good character and common job-related qualities. A failure to assess a candidate for specific cognitive and personality traits can result in a loss of time and effort.

Psychological assessments help recruiters focus on the negative or positive difference a candidate can make to the job they would be performing, the team they will be working for, and the organisation as a whole. The tests shed light on the intelligence as well as the emotional quotient of an applicant. The level of these intelligence and EQ factors should ideally match with the benchmark percentage attribute to the vacant job role. Psychological assessments help find candidates who match all the psychological prerequisites and also stand apart for their above-average intelligence and EQ levels.

Types of Psychological Tests

There is nothing outstanding about hiring a candidate who fits a few of the job prerequisites and can function in a job role. Success lies, however, in the methods used to assess a candidate’s personality and intelligence levels in correlation with the job you are hiring for.  Sure, a traditional face-to-face interview method gives great room for observation and can give you direct feedback on a person’s verbal abilities, communication skills, and body language. But modern assessment tools offer effective methods to thoroughly examine and delve deeper into the candidate’s psychological attributes. Psychological assessment tools are most commonly used to analyse an individual’s personality. The two basic psychological test types that are applicable in recruitment are listed below.

Cognitive Tests

Cognitive tests help measure a candidate’s practical knowledge. Through these tests, a recruiter will be able to analyse how good a candidate is with regards to thinking or solving a problem, the ability to process verbal, auditory and semantic content, and how successfully they are able to combine these two factors to give an acceptable result. These tests help recruiters expand their scope of unearthing positive aspects of a candidates’ behaviour. This helps them give precedence to a candidate’s practical knowledge over their academic score.

The top cognitive tests used by leading organisations in their recruitment process are:

1. Inductive reasoning aptitude which is used to measure a job applicant’s ability to find solutions for problems by accepting, adapting and working with new and unfamiliar information.

2. Situational judgement test which is used to examine how a candidate responds to certain situations, which are often modelled around real work scenarios.

Personality Tests

We can broadly classify the common personality types at work as follows: The rebel and the conflict resolver; the team player and the lone wolf; the initiative taker and the stickler for rules; the extrovert and the introvert.

All the above-listed categories are not necessarily good or bad, and they both may have their advantages and disadvantages based on different situations at the workplace. The challenge for the organisation lies in identifying the possible categories a recruit or an existing employee may fall under and mapping them with the job role they are hiring for or are most fit for.

This is where a well-accepted personality assessment like the Big Five (otherwise known as the OCEAN) test type is most applicable in. OCEAN stands for and measures a candidate’s Openness, Conscientiousness, Extraversion, Agreeableness, and Neuroticism. According to case studies, these tests give ample insights into a candidate’s personality traits and help recruiters decide whether or not to call an applicant on board.

Applications of Psychological Assessment Tests

Psychological Assessment Tests often consist of test types like self-report questionnaires, multiple-choice questions, and true or false questions that help discover valid insights about the candidates’ hidden psychological qualities. By analysing these assessment results, recruiters can recruit the right candidates. This process facilitates zero bias and thus benefits both the candidate and the hiring organisation.

One of the greatest challenges in mass recruitment is making sure only the right-fit candidates are selected when you have to oversee hundreds of job seekers applying for a specific job. Online Psychological Assessment tests are designed to specially meet such mass campus hiring needs and is highly preferred over traditional hiring methods. This process helps to filter out graduates who have not yet acquired the skills or cognitive abilities necessary for transitioning into work life. This way, recruiters are able to save time and effort by interviewing the most deserving candidates only.

These tests also help in lateral hiring of employees by assessing their mental abilities and related skills that come with age and work experience. Organisations also use psychological assessment to help employees who are in need of support or training. These tests can be customised to check specific traits of an employee, which makes it more easy and effective to address their training and development needs for improved productivity and better quality work and personal life.

MeritTrac Platforms for Psychological Assessments

MeritTrac provides scientifically designed assessment platforms that give accurate and equated psychological assessment test results supplemented with detailed analytics. MeritTrac offers over 360 validated tests for assessment, which has been used to evaluate over 40 million candidates worldwide. MeritTrac’s psychological assessment services help recruiters find candidates with desirable personality traits through self-report multiple choice questions, fill in the blanks, descriptive answers, true or false questions, and more.

MeritTrac’s Pariksha provides administrators with the option to author, design, and schedule tests.

Top features of Pariksha:

  • Administers tests and filters desirable traits in candidates
  • Delivers tests on web-enabled devices
  • Provides a remote proctoring option
  • Supports Windows and Linux platforms
  • Removes judgment-based decision making while hiring candidates

MeritTrac’s SmartTest aids assessment in three simple steps, step one involves catalogue selection, step two involves candidate mapping, and the third step is the test delivery.

Top features of SmartTest are:

  • Options to customise competency-based assessments
  • Secure assessment and test delivery
  • User-friendly interface for seamless assessment experience
  • Plug and play option on multiple devices



1. What is a psychological assessment?

A. Psychological assessment can help recruiters hire candidates with desirable psychological qualities and also provide training for existing employees based on assessment results.

2. Why are psychological assessments used for recruiting and training?

A. Good ideas come from bright, active, and alert minds. A job applicant with poor psychological qualities may struggle to give optimal output. Recruiters can use assessments to examine candidates and hire only the right-fit candidates. An existing employee may also face problems due to stressors at home or work. A psychological assessment helps identify such issues and provide support through training and development programs.

3. What are the psychological assessments used in recruitment?

A. Most of the frequently used workplace-based psychological assessments questions help to scale Extroversion, Neuroticism, Conscientiousness, Agreeableness, and Openness in a candidate.

4. What are the USPs of MeritTrac’s psychological assessments?

  • Generate and organise content
  • Design and define psychological assessments
  • Create an exam schedule and deliver question papers
  • Easy result creation and report tabulation.