Having a well-written resume, qualitative experience, and confidence in a face-to-face interview isn’t enough to get a job anymore. The prohibitive costs of bad hires and high turnover rates have made it clear for companies that they need to hire better. In fact, it is estimated that up to 75% of all hiring decisions result in a mis-hire. In most cases, making a wrong hiring decision can cost a company up to roughly 3.5 times the employee’s annual compensation which has a negative impact on the ability to implement a nonprofit’s mission.

Therefore, nonprofits need to run an evidence-based talent acquisition process. Finding the most suitable candidate for a specific position requires companies to innovate in the way they screen, assess and select candidates so they can hire the right candidate for the job.

Thanks to the automated candidate screening and soft skills assessments, predictive hiring technology can help improve the quality of hire. AI-based predictive hiring allows companies to identify which traits are predictive of performance and engagement in the job they’re hiring for and to match the profiles of candidates against that predictive model.

Five reasons you should use personality assessment in your search process:

  1. Data-driven recruitment leads to better hiring decisions

It provides objective data that enables better decision-making. Personality assessment provides you with standardized, useful insights regarding how candidates behave in a work context and predict job performance and company fit. By using this data to identify and hire the right candidate you’ll also improve the overall productivity and effectiveness of your teams.

Unlike resume analysis or face to face interviews, a personality assessment allows you to accurately assess important personality traits of the candidate like openness, conscientiousness, extraversion, agreeableness and stability and various characteristics such as sociability, need for recognition, leadership orientation, cooperation, consideration, dependability, efficiency, even-temperament, achievement striving, self-confidence, abstract thinking, and creative thinking.

  1. Personality assessments improve the candidate’s screening at the top of the funnel

Using personality assessment to screen candidates early on significantly improves your selection process. When combined with other types of assessments, such as motivation and cognitive ability, and structured interviews, the personality assessment provides powerful insights to improve the selection process and inform the recruiters’ decisions.

Applying it at the beginning of the process, and not at the end, helps to screen out candidates that are not a good fit at all. This makes it easier for recruiters to focus only on the most promising profiles throughout the selection process and to identify and hire the best talent at the end. At Catalyst Consulting Services, we utilize assessments provided by our partner Criteria prior to our behavioral interview to help fine customize the questions and get to the heart of behaviors the candidate possess.

  1. It’s possible to assess if a candidate has the ideal personality regarding a wide range of job categories

Research shows that well developed personality assessment can successfully predict employee performance across the wide range of job categories. What you are looking for in a candidate may vary depending on the department or nonprofit industry you are hiring for. For hiring senior level executives you’ll probably want to assess overall personality traits, but if you’re hiring a server maybe you’ll be specifically interested in personality traits like sociability or conscientiousness.

However, no matter what the traits you’re more interested in, if you use a personality assessment, it’s possible to quickly compare candidates’ scores, which helps not only individually assessing a candidate, but also to compare him with all the candidates competing for the same position.

  1. Finding the most suitable candidates increases employee quality and retention

As important as hiring the right candidate, it’s crucial for nonprofits to retain talent and reduce turnover. With a personality assessment, you can screen candidates more efficiently for aptitude and personality and assess whether a candidate is likely to stay in the role and fit in with the nonprofit culture.

To assess if candidates are fit for a position, there are many factors that can be considered such as passion for learning; overall ambition; ownership and initiative; empathy; communication skills; critical thinking skills; collaboration skills; honesty; motivation; curiosity; etc. Screening for these skills during a standard face-to-face interview can be extremely difficult.

Employees that aren’t the right fit for a job will eventually underperform in terms of engagement with the role and productivity and, thus, are more likely to leave. And as you well know, replacing a bad hire can be expensive and time-consuming. But using personality assessments in your recruitment can reduce costs on hiring and training costs by providing you with data that will help you hire the right people for a position the first time.

  1. Driving an evidence-based recruitment process increases legal defensibility

Using personality assessments can increase the legal defensibility of your recruitment process. Of course, you must follow the same guidelines as any other hiring selection method (including resumes, interviews, etc.), which means that this kind of assessment is completely legal to use as long as it is job-related.

If you employ a well-designed and reliable assessment in your recruitment, you’ll add a layer of legal defensibility to the process, given the fact that it provides employers with objective, scientifically validated predictors of success in a job, in opposition to other subjective hiring methods. This actually gives companies a chance to better defend their hiring procedures if someone questions their hiring process legality.

For all these reasons, here at Catalyst Consulting Services, promotes the use of the personality test as a way of assessing candidates’ personality traits during the recruitment process, in order to gain a better understanding regarding how a candidate’s personality can influence job satisfaction and performance and find the right candidate for a specific job.

There’s more to a candidate than education and experience and hard skills and past experiences are getting less relevant every day. Today, the key is to be able to predict future success to make the right hiring decisions.


Michelle Turman, MA, CFRE is the CEO of Catalyst Consulting Services whose mission is to facilitate positive change for nonprofits in the areas of executive searches, organizational management, and fundraising. With over twenty-seven years of nonprofit experience, Turman has been responsible for increasing the impact and best practices of nonprofit organizations she serves and has raised over $82 million for the Tampa Bay community through her professional and personal philanthropic efforts.

If your organization has questions on personality assessments while hiring or you and you are looking for help in the hiring process, contact Catalyst Consulting Services at (813) 839-2282

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