May 23, 2024 | 4
Minute Read

How to Choose the Right Assessment Tool



It’s crucial to understand that not all assessment tools are created equally. Not only do different assessments measure different aspects of an individual, but the source of the assessment is just as important. 

For example, as you shop around, you might find similar assessment tools that both claim to measure an individual’s motivation. How do you decide which one better suits your needs? That decision comes down to the quality of the assessment, as well as the reliability and reputation of the assessment provider. 

Different tools do different things; you must align the tool you select with your purpose. Here’s how to choose the right assessment tool. 

Find the Right Consultant

If you’re focusing on development in your organization, it can be the perfect time to bring in a professional. Harness the experience and guidance of a consultant or coach to guide both assessment use and the proceeding developmental plans based on uncovered insights. 

Finding the right consultant for your business can help you avoid pitfalls with assessment use. Psychology Today shared, "The tools used in an assessment process should be selected for their relevance to the situation and their ability to help the assessor make job-related inferences. Each tool will provide insight, limited by its inherent advantages and disadvantages.” 

Selecting the right assessment tool can be easier with a trusted professional guiding your decision.

Determine Areas of Development 

Next, decide which areas you want to focus on developing. Are you looking to gain insight into an individual’s skills? Do you want to know more about your team’s level of emotional intelligence? Do you want to improve communication or enhance your culture? What kinds of behavioral profiles are most common within your organization? Assessments can answer all of these questions. 

It’s important to remember that assessments provide information—it’s up to your consultant and, ultimately, you to apply the insights to your life and development. 

One of the best ways to get the most out of assessments is to embrace a multi-science approach by using several assessments  that uncover different personality aspects.

“Personality is complicated,” shared Dustin Hebets, TTI Success Insights’ Cognitive Behavioral Research Analyst. “The whole sum of someone’s personality is far too complex and multidimensional to be completely and accurately measured. However, assessments give us insight into specific aspects of an individual’s personality and let us measure and quantify those aspects.”

The same Psychology Today article also states, "It’s important to use multiple methods that cut across a continuum of traits and behaviors in an assessment that will help you understand 1.) what an individual has done and 2.) what they are likely to do in the future.”

Decide Who Will Be Involved in Development 

Your next step is to decide who will be involved with development and then choose assessment tools to best serve their needs. Are you developing your executive team? Do you want to focus on pre-employment assessments? Is your entire team going to be developed?

It’s important to know what outcome you’re looking for when working with assessments. The good news is that even across departments and within different teams, assessment use can increase awareness and improve communication. If even a single team leader can learn how to increase their emotional intelligence, their entire team can benefit from those insights as they improve their behavior. 

If you want to maximize the impact of assessment tools, consider using the same tool for every team member. When you do this, you create a shared language and new vocabulary of understanding on that team. By giving a shared, measurable understanding of communication and behavior, you can immediately improve communication and collaboration.

Understand the Difference Between Assessment Tools and Personality Tests

A common misconception is that assessment tools used in the workplace are personality tests. There’s a reason quick quizzes and ‘pop science’ tests are so popular: people want to know more about themselves and enjoy the shorthand associations that come with it. However, science-based skills assessments go far beyond that. 

One of the fastest ways to determine whether an assessment will help fulfill your needs is to find out if the tool is based on science. Look for an assessment provider with a research department working on reliability studies, peer-reviewed publications, white papers, technical reports, and case studies. This work will help ensure that the insights for individuals, teams, and organizations uncovered by assessments are based on scientifically validated, trusted tools. 

It’s also important to remember that assessments aren’t tests since they cannot be failed. An assessment like DISC digs into an individual’s behavioral patterns. There is no ‘correct’ behavioral style, so there’s no way to fail or cheat a DISC assessment. This is true of all assessments at TTI.

Ensure Your Purpose Makes Sense 

Finally, you need to understand exactly what you want to get out of assessment use. Decide on the scope and focus of the behavioral assessment—will it cover behavioral traits, specific competencies, or skills? This purpose will help make sure you know how to choose the right assessment tool for your specific situation. 

Remember that assessments don’t automatically solve problems in the workplace. They reveal insights and can uncover areas for improvement and development, but further action must be taken after an assessment to expand on the information revealed. 

For example, if an employee struggles with communication, having them take an assessment will not automatically solve the issue. You can’t expect them to know how to leverage the assessment results independently. This is where working with a trusted consultant comes in; someone outside of your organization who deeply understands your values and goals can guide the development of the employee and their team, using the assessment as a framework of understanding. 

Also, remember that you cannot legally use assessments as a unilateral decision-maker, and they cannot solely determine hiring or firing decisions. Make sure your purpose is clear and understood by identifying the specific areas where behavioral assessment will be beneficial and clearly outlining the goals and objectives of the assessment use as professional development. 

Choose the Right Assessment Tool, the Right Way 

Choosing the right assessment tool for professional development is a strategic process that requires careful consideration and thorough evaluation. By following the steps outlined above, organizations can ensure that they select a tool that aligns with their objectives, addresses their specific needs, and provides actionable insights for development. 

If you can’t do it all on your own, don’t worry! Working with a trusted consultant can help navigate the complexities of assessment selection and maximize the impact of their use for professional development. With the right assessment tool and guidance in place, organizations can unlock new opportunities for growth, improve communication, and foster a culture of continuous learning and development.




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Jaime Faulkner