Talent Science blog series - Myth #2: Candidates react negatively to assessments

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July 5, 2023

Talent assessments have become increasingly popular in the world of work as a tool for identifying and developing individuals' skills and abilities. However, despite their widespread use, there are still many myths and misconceptions surrounding talent assessments that can prevent individuals and organizations from fully realizing their potential.

In this blog series, we will explore and bust some of the most common myths associated with talent assessments. By doing so, we hope to help individuals and organizations gain a better understanding of the true value of talent assessments and how they can be leveraged to maximize human potential.

Myth #2: Candidates react negatively to assessments

There is a perception that assessments hurt the candidate experience. There are some valid considerations there – of course candidate experience matters:

  1. It is indeed the case that candidates will infer what it’s like to work for your company based on the candidate experience
  2. And it is quite likely that if you’re in a service industry, your candidates are potential customers, so you don’t want to turn them off with a bad experience

TRUTH: Candidate experience is elevated with assessments

One thing we’re able to do at Talent Science is offer for candidates to complete a survey about their experience right after they finish the assessment, and we do that periodically. Earlier this year, we opened up a couple of surveys and had a little over 5,000 candidates respond to them. These were candidates to a variety of different roles across a number of industries, but the majority would have been candidates for hourly jobs. Of that group:

  • 93% reported they thought the assessment was easy to complete
  • 89% said it took a reasonable amount of time
  • 95% said the assessment was a positive experience

We also asked the question, what is a reasonable amount of time for assessment?

Myth #2-Candidates react negatively to assessments.png

In this cumulative graph, if someone indicated that 10 minutes was reasonable, we assumed they also would think 5 minutes is reasonable. The most common response was 10 minutes, which makes sense because the majority of survey participants had just completed a 10-minute assessment. Interestingly, we did look at the data for those who had completed 2 assessments totaling a little over 20 minutes, and the most common response for that group was – you guessed it – 20 minutes. So it seems that people will tend to say whatever amount of time they just spent is reasonable. Taken together, we think this is pretty strong evidence that candidates do not find assessments to be a negative experience.


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