Since decades now personality tests have been used as a tool for recruitment. However this has been limited to only certain types of careers such as the military, government and research organizations. It was considered that jobs in these careers were such that individual's personality would influence his performance. Hence the custom of conducting personality tests as part of the evaluation process for recruitment.

In recent years, it has emerged that personality tests may have a much wider application. Innumerable surveys have thrown light on the fact that an individual's psyche, personality and mental makeup affect his performance in just about any job. Be it a janitor, teacher, clerk, accountant, doctor. Each job has its own requirements which make it suitable for a particular personality profile and not so suitable for another.

The awareness of this has moved from surveys and researchers to actual industry. Corporate HR chiefs are beginning to appreciate the value that such tests can bring to their organization. Finding out the personality profile of job candidates before hiring them allows them to hire the right person. This prevents a bad hire and the losses that go with it such as - time, effort & money spent on training the bad hire, money spent on his salary, the ugly situation of having of firing him and the restarting the job of looking for a replacement. In fact some human resource chiefs consider it so advantageous that they are even having their existing employees go through such personality tests! There are different schools of thought on how a personality test should be applied. For e.g. some companies and HR professionals base their personality tests on the candidate's past work experience. They are of the strong belief that the behavior of the candidate in previous professional scenarios holds the key in evaluating him.

While this type of thinking has many takers there is another school of thought which is steadily become popular. It professes that personality tests should instead focus on finding out the type of job that an individual would most thrive in. The propogaters of this theory feel that that this method 'looks forward' than the other type of personality tests which they feel are 'backward looking'.

Personality assessment that was once strictly done during interviews is now being done through personality tests. Infact due to the ease with which such tests can be administered they are now commonly being used in the very first stage of evaluation. Only if the candidates cross this hurdle are they evaluated on their aptitude, knowledge and job skills. The reasoning being that even if a candidate lacks in job skills then he can make up for these in time. However, if he does not have the right personality for the job, then he is never going to fit in.

Whilst IQ test and evaluation- based on job skills would always remain, there is no doubt that administering of a personality test has become the primary & most important evaluation & recruitment tool for today's businesses.

Author's Bio: 

Shelly Ray is an editor with, a site dealing with IQ, Personality, Career and other Self-Assessment Tests.