Pre-Employment Test

Definition

The term pre-employment test refers to an assessment used by employers to screen applicants prior to a firm offer of employment.  In practice, an applicant may have to pass a number of pre-employment tests, in addition to a background check, before being offered a job.

Explanation

Also known as pre-placement testing, pre-employment tests are conducted by employers prior to providing a job candidate with a firm offer of employment.  In some cases, a candidate may be offered a position contingent upon them passing a number of tests.  These tests are used to assess the candidate's knowledge, skills, and personality in addition to drug abuse.  Companies utilize pre-employment tests to help identify candidates that will perform well on the job.  This can decrease training costs and lower turnover due to poor performance.

While some tests may be administered to all potential employees, the number and types of tests used may also be a function of the position.  For example, all employees may be screened for drugs and alcohol as well as a personality test, which can be used to determine the applicant's integrity or emotional intelligence.  If the position involves working with tools, the applicant may have to pass a motor skills test.

Companies may also conduct routine background checks on all job candidates before making them a firm offer. Background checks are used to verify information appearing on a resume or job application such as the applicant's work history.  Examining driving and arrest records may also be part of a background check.

Related Terms

applicant pool, employment background check, non-disclosure agreement, employment eligibilityemployment credit check, pre-employment drug testing