Why a potential analysis is not a test - and why you should not be afraid of the result

We often hear that applicants have to take a test at the recruiter's office after the first interview. Uncomfortable feelings and memories of the training period are awakened. What is expected of me, how can I achieve the best possible result? How can I prepare myself?

Well, not at all. Nor should anyone prepare for it. What is sometimes flippantly called a "test" is also reality in the application process at HILL International. However, this has nothing to do with putting candidates under calculated stress, but simply to get to know them better objectively as they are.


Hard facts are good, but not everything

But why, you may continue to ask, does the experienced consulting professional need this when you can adequately demonstrate your experience and competencies in your application materials and in the interview? Simply because this is important, but not everything. And because the HR professional wants to get it right in the deepest sense - for the company, i.e., the client, as well as for those applicants who make the shortlist. It means first taking on the challenge of filling a position as accurately as possible in the interests of all concerned. Call it professionalism and appreciation.

No right or wrong, a potential analysis does not evaluate

The good thing is: there is no "right" or "wrong". It is therefore impossible to "fail" and we never speak of a "test". In a good potential analysis, there is no evaluation, and no simplistic types are presented in the result. What is made transparent, on the other hand, is what characterizes a person. There are no positive or negative personality traits per se. The evaluation only finds its value in comparison with the requirements of a specific job.

This shows how well personal characteristics, interests and competencies fit a specific job profile and the challenges in a defined company or team with its culture. In a broader sense, this is matchmaking, as it is also used in private life. The hard facts from the CV are one thing, but in the rather intensive "living together" in the professional environment, several other important factors are added.

Imagine that your life partner is - what is important to you - reliable in dealing with finances, planning ahead and as an example, gifted in garden design in Mediterranean style. It´s a match. However, a very loud and impulsive, sometimes quite distrustful evening person, who would like to commit firmly, while you prefer the quieter and diplomatic tones, an early start in the day and a loose commitment. This could be difficult... It is the same in the professional environment.

How well does a person "fit" a challenge?

Since people are unique individuals, the professional environment is also very much about the personal sides of a person, which tend to be obscured in "socialized" answers to interview questions or exaggerated in promising self-promotion.
However, to be able to perceive the person in a large part of his facets, a potential analysis such as the HILL Competence Analysis® shortens this otherwise quite long process of getting to know someone massively. The many gradations and combinations of characteristics make it possible to get an "unvarnished" picture of someone you hardly know.

Thus, based on a procedure that "measures" everyone in the same way, the HR consultant can assess whether, given the same professional aptitude, person A, B or C fits better into the existing team of a company, feels comfortable there, therefore also acts more motivated and ultimately a sustainable, productive, and satisfied cooperation is created for both sides. It is the respect for the responsible process that we as personnel consultants are allowed to accompany and the appreciation towards each person to consider him objectively and as comprehensively as possible in his potentials.

Positive for companies and applicants

As feedback from customers, we often hear that an interview impression has been completed and that the results provide valuable information on what needs to be paid particular attention to in the company in future cooperation. Even from our candidates' side, the time investment in the competence analysis is never pointless. There are interested applicants who subsequently ask for feedback and in doing so deal more intensively with their personal preferences and strengths.
As a result, you will reflect on your personal career path and manage it more consciously yourself.

Therefore, should you be invited to a "test" at the personnel consulting company again: Lean back, now you know that they also value your personality and your well-being in the company!

Would you like to learn more? Read here about the HILL Competence Analysis.

Mag. Birgit Pfannhauser, Franchise Supervisor, Marketing Manager
Franchise Supervisor, Marketing Manager

Do the best you can until you know better. And when you know better, do better.