How to Leverage Situational Judgement Tests for Better Hiring

By Astrid Wonderley on June 1, 2023

In today’s competitive job market, finding the right candidate for a role can be a challenging task. Traditional hiring methods often fall short in assessing an individual’s decision-making abilities and their suitability for a specific job. The lack of information makes hiring harder than it needs to be— this is where Situational Judgement Tests (SJTs) come into play.

SJTs provide valuable insights into how each candidate approaches realistic job scenarios. This information helps your team evaluate their suitability for a given role. In this article, we’ll explore how you can leverage SJTs to enhance your hiring process and secure best-fit candidates for your organization.

What is a situational judgement test?

An SJT is an assessment tool that can be used throughout the hiring process. SJTs present a candidate with realistic work situations, and for each one, asks them to choose the best course of action from a set of options. These scenarios are designed to reflect the challenges and demands of the target role, which helps gauge their judgment, problem solving, and decision making skills.

How do situational judgement tests lead to better hiring decisions?

SJTs lead to better hiring decisions by providing your team with objective measures of important candidate traits.

According to the U.S Office of Personnel Management, many research papers, and meta-analyses, SJTs have a high degree of validity, high ROI, low administration costs, and can be applied to a variety of industries and roles. The insights from SJTs are ideal for roles that require candidates with a high level of social or interpersonal skills.

According to the U.S OPM, SJTs are particularly effective for measuring the following:

  • Managerial and leadership competency
  • Conflict management
  • Interpersonal skills
  • Negotiation skills
  • Facilitating teamwork
  • Cultural awareness

How can I implement situational judgement testing effectively?

To implement situational judgement testing, it’s crucial to integrate it into your hiring process. Determine at which stage of the process the SJTs will be administered—whether it’s during the initial screening, after screening, or as part of the interviewing stage. Use SJTs alongside other evaluation methods to gain a comprehensive understanding of a candidates’ suitability for the role.

It’s recommended to reach out to an experienced assessment vendor, such as HighMatch, who can work with your team to determine your specific needs and develop a solution that works for you.

In short,

Situational judgement tests are valuable tools that enable your hiring team to make more informed decisions. By leveraging SJTs effectively, you can evaluate several different critical candidate competencies and secure best-fit hires for your organization.