In the context of recruitment Big Data is data set available to an organisation which they can use to identify the key skills and attributes they are looking for in their newest recruits. Big data is a collection of the mass of data and information generated by companies and their stakeholders (e.g. customers, staff etc) which can be efficiently analysed to inform strategic decisions about hiring.
Historically, traditional candidate tests focused on core numerical and verbal reasoning skills with candidates results being compared to others who sat that same test. But, as psychometric testing has developed and become more mainstream in the recruitment process, employers are looking for more intuitive methods of identifying the most appropriate candidates for their roles. An opportunity to put your Big Data to work is by creating bespoke psychometric tests like situation judgement tests and personality tests.
While candidates can prepare in a more traditional way for the more traditional numerical and verbal reasoning assessments, preparing for a situational judgement test requires careful consideration of the organisation you are applying for.
By utilising their Big Data and investing heavily in ‘intelligent’ psychometric testing or save money in the long term as the risk of employing less suitable candidates is lower. This doesn’t just save on the bottom line but boosts productivity with a more suitable candidate hired. For example the personality and behavioural traits a client facing professional services law firm are looking for is potentially quite different to those which an analytical actuarial firm are seeking.
Big data essentially allows psychometric testing to become more ‘intelligent’ and a more valuable recruitment and investment tool. While large recruiters like the Big 4 accounting firms will use bespoke situational judgement tests it is possible to improve your chance of passing by understanding what “competencies” employers are generally looking for. These typically include generic skills nearly all organisations require their employees to have like teamwork and relationship building (you can read more about these competencies on our Situational Judgement page).
In summary, big data insights are allowing organisations to identify the traits of their best divisions, departments and employees and by using this data to construct bespoke psychometric tests they are able to identify the most suitable candidates for their roles, thus gaining a competitive advantage over others in their market.