15
Employment Testing in Private Industry

Wanda J. Campbell and David J. Kleinke


ASSESSING CLIENT NEEDS

One of the first lessons that you learn when you make the transition from academe to testing in the private sector is that tests are tools. Organizations want tests that identify competent people, don't have adverse impact, don't offend anyone, look like tests should look, don't cost a lot of money, and can be developed quickly. The job of a corporate psychologist is to find a comfortable balance in meeting these goals, which may at times be in conflict. Personal allegiances to any particular selection tool quickly fall by the wayside if the test cannot meet many of these criteria.

In this chapter, we are going to describe some of the ways corporate psychologists have been performing these balancing acts. We will describe some of what we and our colleagues have learned along the way.


What Kind of Test Is Best for the Particular Need?

When you are faced with a need for a selection instrument, the first issue is what type of test should be used. Resolving this issue is not about reliability and validity. Certainly, reliability and validity are important in evaluating selection instruments; however, there are a number of different testing technologies that can produce reliable and valid tests. Your responsibility is to find the technology that will best meet the needs of your client.

Therefore, your first job is to find out what the client's needs are. What are the problems? Are the people selected unable to complete the training program?

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