Earlier today Derek Grant gave a great talk on building a sales department at The Ultimate Sales Conference. One of his recommendations was to use a written assessment during the hiring process, which has several benefits:
- Reveals level of interest by the potential recruit
- Demonstrates ability to research information and articulate a response
- Shows candidate’s responsiveness and turnaround time for an assignment
- Creates more valuable conversations throughout the interview process due to more background research
We first implemented the written assessment at Pardot after Adam and I had a debate about hiring a candidate with no experience. I thought the candidate really fit our corporate culture and had the right acumen to succeed on our services team. After going back and forth a few times, we decided to give a technical assessment and written assessment. He passed with flying colors.
Going forward, we’d ask each candidate to write short answers to the following types of questions:
- What do we do?
- How do we differ from Google Analytics?
- What are three trends in our industry?
- Who are our three main competitors and why?
- How do position ourselves in the market?
Candidates were expected to research the questions and provide short, thoughtful answers. Everything about it worked great. Once that first one worked out well, written assessments became a best practice for the hiring process.
What else? What are your thoughts on written assessments in the hiring process?