In a previous blog post, I introduced you to Performance Profiling and described it as the alternative to using a personality test (otherwise known as either a psychological or psychometric test). In that article, I also mentioned that the technique of Performance Profiling was developed especially to help organizations implement successful employee retention strategies by linking together recruitment and management into one cohesive process.
The performance profiling technique helps organizations improve both job applicant screening and employee management through a better understanding of both job applicants and employees in each of the following areas:
- Core behavioral traits and motivations
- Role-related performance issues
- Employee-specific management needs
Personality test questionnaires typically consist of multiple-choice questions. When an individual answers these questions, their answers are analyzed and a report is generated which describes the individuals core behavioral characteristics. When test publishers develop such tests, they correlate the relationship between the ways in which individuals in a test group answer the multiple-choice questions with their core behavioral characteristics as described by people who know them well.
Performance Profile Development
In the construction of the performance profile test, however, we correlate the relationship between the ways in which individuals in a test group answer the multiple-choice questions with their performance as described by their managers.
One of the key challenges faced in the development of this technology relates to the fact that performance ratings are subjective and can be influenced by many factors, not all of which should have any bearing on the process. As a result, performance ratings can be inaccurate.
Let me describe how, through a process of both repeat measurements and triangulation, we have been able to create a stream of performance data sufficiently reliable for use in the development of the Talent Chaser Performance Profile Questionnaire.
Take a look at the map below. This was created in 1489 by the cartographer Albino de Canape. This map was created to provide mariners of the day with port-to-port compass settings for journeys across the Mediterranean. Satellite images have subsequently demonstrated that the locations shown were mapped with incredible accuracy. Look at the map and you will see the outlines of Spain and Italy very much as they appear in today’s modern maps.
Ancient cartographers like Albino de Canape and others were able to achieve this accuracy even though they had to rely on the information contained in the relatively inaccurate logs of mariners working in the Mediterranean. The technique they employed is used to support the way in which Talent Chaser learns and adapts.
In constructing this map, Albino de Canape first identified the busiest Mediterranean ports. He then took all of the mariners logs covering cross-Mediterranean journeys to and from these ports and from this established their relative positions. While each log entry was relatively inaccurate, he had access to literally thousands of such logs. Because of inaccuracies, each log indicated a somewhat different relative position between each port-to-port pair. By laying these positions over each other, he was able to interpolate between them and identify the most representative position for each port.
The resulting accuracy of the map he produced through this process tells us is that, even though, the individual measurements themselves lacked accuracy, by using many repeat measurements an accurate picture was obtained.
Frequent Measurement of Outcomes
Frequent measurement of outcomes underpins the adaptive engine within Talent Chaser. Repeated performance measurements, when taken as a whole, provide an accurate picture describing how each employee performs. Using this methodology, it has proved possible to create a performance map of any organization and keep it up-to-date on a continuous basis. These Performance Maps provide the information necessary to support a truly objective evidence-based approach to the management of any organization.
Prior to the advent of performance profiling, questions had arisen regarding the ability of managers to rate subordinate performance accurately. Through the use of repeated performance measurements, we have discovered that, even though each measurement may have inaccuracies, over a period of time a clear and unambiguous view of each employee’s strengths and weaknesses is obtained. This is then used as one stream of data that we can rely on as we screen job applicants and identify those likely to become long-term employees.
To this subjective stream of data, the actual length of employment of employees recruited through the technology is also taken into account.
In a manner similar to the way in which cartographers in the fifteenth century proved able to create accurate maps from inaccurate data, so we have independently verified evidence that through the employment of the Performance Profile Questionnaire it is not only possible to reduce employee turnover rates significantly but that ongoing reductions year on year can also be achieved.
Talent Chaser’s recruitment and employee management software combines adaptive technology with an evidence-based approach that helps human resource professionals and managers hire, train, and retain the best performers for each specific organizational role.