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This truly is the age of the ineffective management tools.

Tenchiro

Attention K Mart Shoppers
Jul 19, 2002
5,407
0
New England
So I am temping for a company, in the IT dept. A company who is in desperate need of quality employees in this department. Not only are they doing a rollout of all new PC's w/ a new OS, they are also in the process of switching from Novell to Windows for their network infrastrcture. All the while they are re-organizing the IT dept and moving most of the valuable employees from their current jobs to newly created positions. So this is creating quite a few new openings.

Now I have been here making a sub par wage since May, all the while being told how good of a job I am doing. To the point where my contract has been extended more times that I care to remember. The only reason I have stuck around is because I knew that there was a good possibility of getting on and a a decent wage.

Well it finaly comes around that they get my resume processed and contact me. I am asked to take a "Customer Service Aptitude" test on-line. The HR douchenozzle, just says to answer it honestly and it should be no problem.

I take the test which has NOTHING to do with customer service, but is basically a Myers Briggs personality test. It is loaded with questions like "Do you think that healthcare workers are more prone to on the job injuries" or "Do you think that most employees are honest with their employers" types of questions. The choices of answer are simply Strongly Agree, Slightly Agree, Strongly disagree, etc. Well I go through the test as best as I can, but because of the sweeping generalizations that these questions were making there was no way I could really have much of an opinion on any of them.

Come to find out today that the company that scores these tests said I would not make a good candidate, because my answers were "not candid enough"... Surely I think that just that one thing won't totally screw me over for the job, because I have been performing this job for the last 5 months and getting nothing but compliments and extensions, and have even been with training other people when needed. But no, every person involved is acting like there is absolutely nothing they can do because of that f@cking test...

So now they are not only going to hire someone totally new and pay to train them and get ramped up in the job, but I am sure it will be me that trains them...

The worst part is, the testing company is located on the east coast. So I can't go and hang out in front of their building and punch random employees in the face. :angry: Not candid enough my ass...
 

H8R

Cranky Pants
Nov 10, 2004
13,971
20
Tenchiro said:
So now they are not only going to hire someone totally new and pay to train them and get ramped up in the job, but I am sure it will be me that trains them..
:devil: :devil: :devil: :devil:

What an excellent opportunity to:

A) Show you really are the one for the job - or,

B) Train this new fool with ALL the wrong info.


:devil: :devil: :devil: :devil: :devil:
 

Westy

the teste
Nov 22, 2002
36,651
3,475
Sleazattle
Your probably better off in the long run. A company that would make hiring decisions for such stupid and random reasons is not going to be very successful down the road.
 

Tenchiro

Attention K Mart Shoppers
Jul 19, 2002
5,407
0
New England
Westy said:
Your probably better off in the long run. A company that would make hiring decisions for such stupid and random reasons is not going to be very successful down the road.
That is what I keep telling myself... It doesn't really help though. I am waiting for my anger to subside so denial can set in.
 

Tenchiro

Attention K Mart Shoppers
Jul 19, 2002
5,407
0
New England
H8R said:
What an excellent opportunity to:

A) Show you really are the one for the job - or,

B) Train this new fool with ALL the wrong info.
Or

C) Chicken Bomb in the ceiling tiles. :devil:
 

Tenchiro

Attention K Mart Shoppers
Jul 19, 2002
5,407
0
New England
I Are Baboon said:
A personality test? WTF kind of company makes you take a personality test? You temping for the CIA or something?
It is just a lousy IT job in a hospital...

Since when do geeks have a personality? :sneaky:
 

ALEXIS_DH

Tirelessly Awesome
Jan 30, 2003
5,350
153
Lima, Peru, Peru
I Are Baboon said:
A personality test? WTF kind of company makes you take a personality test? You temping for the CIA or something?
anybody knows how effective those tests are??
everybody knows what might be inferred from the answers, thus everybody can reply according to the image they want to give of themselves.

so we know, they know we know... and we know they know we know, and they leave a few questions to see if you are lying.. but they are pretty easy to screen...

are they effective?? are they ultimately dependant on the sincerity of the test taker??
 

Tenchiro

Attention K Mart Shoppers
Jul 19, 2002
5,407
0
New England
I have spent the better part of an hour composing an e-mail trying to convince them otherwise. How do you think this sounds?

HR Mucky Muck,

I understand why this decision was made. But the more I think about it, the more I wonder; is there really nothing that can be done about this?

I have been working in the Service Desk at Swedish since the beginning of May. I have gotten nothing but compliments on my performance so far, and my contract has been extended several times. I feel that am more than capable enough to succeed at this position. Plus I have almost 10 years experience in doing exactly what this job requires.

I am surprised that all that could be trumped by not being considered “candid” by an on-line personality test. If there really is nothing else that can be done, then this is the last you will hear of it from me. But I really do think should be reconsidered.
 

H8R

Cranky Pants
Nov 10, 2004
13,971
20
Tenchiro said:
I have spent the better part of an hour composing an e-mail trying to convince them otherwise. How do you think this sounds?

The greeting is weird, but otherwise it sound good to me.

:)
 

Ciaran

Fear my banana
Apr 5, 2004
9,844
11
So Cal
Tenchiro said:
I have spent the better part of an hour composing an e-mail trying to convince them otherwise. How do you think this sounds?
My changes are in bold


WhileI understand why this decision was made, the more I think about it, the more I wonder; is there really nothing that can be done about this?

I have been working in the Service Desk at Swedish since the beginning of May. In that time I have recieved nothing but compliments on my performance so far, and my contract has been extended several times due to my outstanding performance. I feel that am more than capable enough to succeed at this position. In addition, I have almost 10 years experience in doing exactly what this job requires.

I am quite surprised that my experience and qualifications could be so easily trumped by an on-line personality test. If there really is nothing else that can be done, then this is the last you will hear of it from me. But I really do think should be reconsidered.

You may consider using a different word than "trumped"... disregarded, negated, or something like that. Your last two sentences don't really work... Maybe something like...

While I feel that reconsideration would be beneficial to not only myself, but the company as well, I will refrain from any further communication should there truely be no other avenue in which to persue employment with your company.
 

Westy

the teste
Nov 22, 2002
36,651
3,475
Sleazattle
Do you feel you have worked well with others at work? If so put that in your message and urge HR to ask those you interact with about you if they are concerned about your personality.
 

Tenchiro

Attention K Mart Shoppers
Jul 19, 2002
5,407
0
New England
Westy said:
Do you feel you have worked well with others at work? If so put that in your message and urge HR to ask those you interact with about you if they are concerned about your personality.
Funnily enough, I interact with HR people all day long. Fixing their computers...
 

sunny

Grammar Civil Patrol
Jul 2, 2004
1,108
0
Sandy Eggo, CA
Ciaran said:
My changes are in bold


WhileI understand why this decision was made, the more I think about it, the more I wonder; is there really nothing that can be done about this?

I have been working in the Service Desk at Swedish since the beginning of May. In that time I have recieved nothing but compliments on my performance so far, and my contract has been extended several times due to my outstanding performance. I feel that am more than capable enough to succeed at this position. In addition, I have almost 10 years experience in doing exactly what this job requires.

I am quite surprised that my experience and qualifications could be so easily trumped by an on-line personality test. If there really is nothing else that can be done, then this is the last you will hear of it from me. But I really do think should be reconsidered.

You may consider using a different word than "trumped"... disregarded, negated, or something like that. Your last two sentences don't really work... Maybe something like...

While I feel that reconsideration would be beneficial to not only myself, but the company as well, I will refrain from any further communication should there truely be no other avenue in which to persue employment with your company.
Here is my contribution to the last paragraph:

I am quite surprised that my proven experience and qualifications could be so easily trumped by an on-line personality test that requires the subject to strongly agree or disagree with a number of broad generalizations. However, if company policy allows you no flexibility in this matter, I will not pursue the subject further. I have had a very positive work experience at Whatevertheplaceis, and wish you continued success.


fwiw...
 

Tenchiro

Attention K Mart Shoppers
Jul 19, 2002
5,407
0
New England
sunny said:
Here is my contribution to the last paragraph:

I am quite surprised that my proven experience and qualifications could be so easily trumped by an on-line personality test that requires the subject to strongly agree or disagree with a number of broad generalizations. However, if company policy allows you no flexibility in this matter, I will not pursue the subject further. I have had a very positive work experience at Whatevertheplaceis, and wish you continued success.


fwiw...

Damn, that is good.
 

sanjuro

Tube Smuggler
Sep 13, 2004
17,412
0
SF
I don't want you to get into trouble, but why don't you publish the names of the companies involved? Nothing like an internet confession to embarass them...
 

laura

DH_Laura
Jul 16, 2002
6,262
15
Glitter Gulch
I Are Baboon said:
A personality test? WTF kind of company makes you take a personality test? You temping for the CIA or something?

target. target makes you take a 30-60 minute personality test, (with questions like, "would you tell a manager if you knew a fellow employee was stealing?") and a drug test. all to make 7 bucks an hour and wear a tacky red uniform, and deal with people who shop at target all day long.


you should find another place to temp for. if it doesn't look like you are moving up any time soon, and you can fiind another job, i wouldn't waste my time.
 

Reactor

Turbo Monkey
Apr 5, 2005
3,978
1
Chandler, AZ, USA
My boss got very worried when I showed up with the Myers-Briggs-Keirsey type of "Mastermind" :) (60/40 split with "Field Marshal")

Seriously... do you want to work for a place that would give a personality test based on a pedophiles (yung) theories more weight than 5 months of work and ten years of experience?
 
J

JRB

Guest
The hospital Julie works for constantly screws people. It appears to be the norm. Most hospitals cut IT first, from what I see. If they don't think you are candid, who cares??? What the hell does candor have to do with a computer???

Let's see.

Tech - computer, I am seriously tired of your crap.
computer - (no response)
Tech - computer, if you would please try to act right, things would be better.
computer - (no response)

Nope - no difference.

*note - they would love for me to be LESS candid here.
 

MikeD

Leader and Demogogue of the Ridemonkey Satinists
Oct 26, 2001
10,094
110
chez moi
ALEXIS_DH said:
anybody knows how effective those tests are??
everybody knows what might be inferred from the answers, thus everybody can reply according to the image they want to give of themselves.

so we know, they know we know... and we know they know we know, and they leave a few questions to see if you are lying.. but they are pretty easy to screen...

are they effective?? are they ultimately dependant on the sincerity of the test taker??
Well, the people who promote the use of these tests claim that the tests actually SHOW when someone's trying to manipulate the test and when someone's being honest.

It's like going up against a Sicilian when DEATH is on the line!

But seriously, those kinds of tests SUCK. I'm pretty sure I was dropped from consideration by the FBI due to a similar part of their entrance exam. Luckily, I found a better job with a better government agency who relied on extensive personal interviewing and essay samples than standardized tests and/or polygraphs...

MD
 

SkaredShtles

I love NEWCASTLE and will ONLY drink NEWCASTLE!!!!
Sep 21, 2003
49,050
3,018
In a van.... down by the river
Sounds like you may have missed your opportunity to rake in some $$$. When I was doing contract work and the people at the company liked my work I'd hit up my contract company for another couple bucks an hour. They'd always piss and moan, but in the end they always gave it to me because:

1) They wanted to keep me at a client site that was satisfied with my work
2) They didn't want to jeopardize a client relationship because of a couple bucks
3) They build in so much spread that they have craploads of profit from a contractor

One place I went back several times. By the time I left the company a year and a half later I was making almost $5/hour more (from $11 - $16)

Remember that next time. :D
 

binary visions

The voice of reason
Jun 13, 2002
21,668
418
NC
Most businesses like Target, Best Buy, Circuit City, Staples, etc. make you take such tests now. The one at Staples was an absolute joke, since it was so explicit (questions such as, "What amount of money do you think it is acceptable to steal from a company in a year? None at all, $5-10, $10-50, $50-100, More than $100").

The ones at Best Buy and Circuit City are nearly identicle, and appear to be simply a personality test to determine if you're an angry troublemaker or not, with the strongly agree/agree/disagree/etc. options - e.g. "If I don't like what someone is saying to me, I will confront them.", or, "It's okay to tell someone off if they really deserve it."

I would be interested to know how effective they are as well.

Good story: several years ago, I applied to work at Staples and was basically hired on the spot, before I even completed the application. I was given a start date, some company information, etc. Then I filled out the application and subsequent test.

After I was done, I was told that I had failed the test and would not be allowed to work there. I was taken aback since the questions sought such an obvious response, so I asked a few questions until they finally revealed that I had admitted to stealing things from a previous employer. Of course, I had said nothing of the sort, but they insisted, so I said it must have been an error, and perhaps I had clicked the wrong box. The woman said there was literally nothing that could be done, she was totally unable to correct the results, resubmit a second test, or even contact someone to tell them it was a mistake. Nothing. Something about how it was associated with my SS# and there could only be one record for each SS# every two years.

Unbelievable. I just laughed at her, told her what I thought of the whole situation, including the stupid test, and walked out.
 

Ciaran

Fear my banana
Apr 5, 2004
9,844
11
So Cal
loco said:
The hospital Julie works for constantly screws people. It appears to be the norm. Most hospitals cut IT first, from what I see. <snip>
So very very true. I work in IT in a hospital. nevermind the fact that if the computers or the network went down everything would come to a grinding halt.... we're still just the red headed step child of Kaiser Permanente. Thrive my ass!
 

Tenchiro

Attention K Mart Shoppers
Jul 19, 2002
5,407
0
New England
sanjuro said:
I don't want you to get into trouble, but why don't you publish the names of the companies involved? Nothing like an internet confession to embarass them...
Well I still have to work there (for now), but as an added bonus today is the day I become a contract slacker.

I plan on working on my resume most of today. :devil:
 
J

JRB

Guest
Ciaran said:
So very very true. I work in IT in a hospital. nevermind the fact that if the computers or the network went down everything would come to a grinding halt.... we're still just the red headed step child of Kaiser Permanente. Thrive my ass!
These guys best is the fact that they cut some salaries for a few months by 2 - 5 % while building a new hospital. Funny how it has nothing to do with that. :think:
 

Tenchiro

Attention K Mart Shoppers
Jul 19, 2002
5,407
0
New England
Ciaran said:
So very very true. I work in IT in a hospital. nevermind the fact that if the computers or the network went down everything would come to a grinding halt.... we're still just the red headed step child of Kaiser Permanente. Thrive my ass!
Heh, I had a printer jam reported once. I was informed it was a "life or death" situation, because it was the only one in that area of the ER. They are apparently, unable to render medical aid if they can't print the patients info... :rolleyes:

But as reliant on computers and as integrated as they are, my manager still prints out e-mails that she thinks are important and hands them out to the team.
 

blt2ride

Turbo Monkey
May 25, 2005
2,334
0
Chatsworth
Tenchiro said:
So I am temping for a company, in the IT dept. A company who is in desperate need of quality employees in this department. Not only are they doing a rollout of all new PC's w/ a new OS, they are also in the process of switching from Novell to Windows for their network infrastrcture. All the while they are re-organizing the IT dept and moving most of the valuable employees from their current jobs to newly created positions. So this is creating quite a few new openings.

Now I have been here making a sub par wage since May, all the while being told how good of a job I am doing. To the point where my contract has been extended more times that I care to remember. The only reason I have stuck around is because I knew that there was a good possibility of getting on and a a decent wage.

Well it finaly comes around that they get my resume processed and contact me. I am asked to take a "Customer Service Aptitude" test on-line. The HR douchenozzle, just says to answer it honestly and it should be no problem.

I take the test which has NOTHING to do with customer service, but is basically a Myers Briggs personality test. It is loaded with questions like "Do you think that healthcare workers are more prone to on the job injuries" or "Do you think that most employees are honest with their employers" types of questions. The choices of answer are simply Strongly Agree, Slightly Agree, Strongly disagree, etc. Well I go through the test as best as I can, but because of the sweeping generalizations that these questions were making there was no way I could really have much of an opinion on any of them.

Come to find out today that the company that scores these tests said I would not make a good candidate, because my answers were "not candid enough"... Surely I think that just that one thing won't totally screw me over for the job, because I have been performing this job for the last 5 months and getting nothing but compliments and extensions, and have even been with training other people when needed. But no, every person involved is acting like there is absolutely nothing they can do because of that f@cking test...

So now they are not only going to hire someone totally new and pay to train them and get ramped up in the job, but I am sure it will be me that trains them...

The worst part is, the testing company is located on the east coast. So I can't go and hang out in front of their building and punch random employees in the face. :angry: Not candid enough my ass...
Take from an HR guy (don't worry I'm not a douchenozzle :think: ), those tests are a joke. The company I work for uses a test like that as a big part of the employment process and promotion process. I have seen a lot of great candidates, who scored low on the test, get passed over for a job or a promotion. I've actually gone to bat for a few candidates, but the company won't hire or promote someone without a "passing" score on the "personality test."

Subsequently, I have seen a lot of, well, less than desirable employees and candidates slide themselves into a job or promotion, because they scored well on the test.

Personally, I think that it is absurd to use a test like this in making an employment decision. To be honest, I'm really not too sure how a test like this can be "graded." Consistency is the key on a test like this, and don't answer the questions honestly, answer them the way the company would want you to. A good example would be: "Do you think that service workers get hurt more than other employees?" While the answer may be yes, because of their job duties, the answer the company is looking for would be "no." Because of workers' comp costs, etc. companies like to think that as long as you work safe, no job is dangerous.

I know it's kind of a low blow for you, since you have done a good job for them since May, and you already know the job. Did they say when you could take the test again? I know my company has a waiting period, and once it's up, people can take the test over.

Believe me, from an HR stand point, they want to hire you. Basically, it's just a matter of paperwork. Opposed to finding an applicant, interviews, background checks, the test, training, probation periods, etc. Trust me, whenever I can meet a manager's hiring needs by hiring a temp. employee I'm all OVER it. It takes a 1/3 of the time and effort and you know the person will work out! Good luck!
 

MikeD

Leader and Demogogue of the Ridemonkey Satinists
Oct 26, 2001
10,094
110
chez moi
It's a total CYA thing. If they hire someone and he doesn't work out or steals or whatever, they can say, "Well, it's the test's fault, not mine..."

More abdication of personal responsibility and reliance on a faceless 'systems' approach to life. Also indicative of a blame-game mentality...why should a hiring authority be blamed for the actions of a single dishonest employee, unless the hiring authority continually hires screw-ups and thieves?

MD
 

blt2ride

Turbo Monkey
May 25, 2005
2,334
0
Chatsworth
MikeD said:
It's a total CYA thing. If they hire someone and he doesn't work out or steals or whatever, they can say, "Well, it's the test's fault, not mine..."

More abdication of personal responsibility and reliance on a faceless 'systems' approach to life. Also indicative of a blame-game mentality...why should a hiring authority be blamed for the actions of a single dishonest employee, unless the hiring authority continually hires screw-ups and thieves?

MD
That's kind of what it comes down to. Personally, I have interviewed so many people, I can tell with in seconds if the person is a viable candidate, or not. Some people don't always interview well, but that doesn't mean that they shouldn't be considered for a postion. On the other hand, some people come come off really well on interviews, but you know they're not telling you the truth. I have learned to look through the BS. Some people don't do well on tests, it doesn't mean that an employment decision should be reached on just one part of the employment process...

I think companies look at it as the most effective and efficent way to weed out applicants--which is BS...
 

MikeD

Leader and Demogogue of the Ridemonkey Satinists
Oct 26, 2001
10,094
110
chez moi
blt2ride said:
That's kind of what it comes down to. Personally, I have interviewed so many people, I can tell with in seconds if the person is a viable candidate, or not. Some people don't always interview well, but that doesn't mean that they shouldn't be considered for a postion. On the other hand, some people come come off really well on interviews, but you know they're not telling you the truth. I have learned to look through the BS. Some people don't do well on tests, it doesn't mean that an employment decision should be reached on just one part of the employment process...

I think companies look at it as the most effective and efficent way to weed out applicants--which is BS...
In the Marines, when someone/thing screwed up, so long as no one was seriously injured/killed or any security violated, we looked at it as an opportunity...someone gained experience, enabling them to make better decisions down the line, when the guns were actually firing. Or it was an opportunity to refine our procedures and fill a gap we hadn't covered, so long as we didn't overcomplicate things.

(Difference being that we were training back then...businesses are actually in the mix, so in an ironic way,the stakes are higher... But the Marines also recognized that people under fire would make mistakes, and people would die. But they pushed people to be active decisionmakers...bad or simply misfortunate decisions coupled with aggressive actions were generally OK; better than no decision, which was unforgivable..)

When I worked with the Navy for a few years, I found that when something went wrong, leadership wanted to 1) blame and reprimand immediately, isolate the 'wrongdoer' and insulate leadership from fault and 2) review procedures and put impersonal, procedural, and often overly complex measures in place to prevent reoccurance by removing individual will and responsibility.

There's a fine line, and I know which side I prefer to be on. You can never eliminate mistakes or problems, and crucifying people for them is counterproductive.

It's just amazing to see the mentality brought down to even the hiring level...like you pointed out, a good interviewer should be able to make a reasonably reliable call about what someone's like. If they're serious, they don't need an impersonal standardized test to plumb the
depths of an applicant's mind, they need to hire psychologists who've worked for the CIA... Then again, I guess standardized tests are a lot cheaper than a yearly salary for a qualified individual...


MD