The hiring process for any business or organization is often complicated. Not only can it be difficult to find the very best candidate for the job, but there's often a level of uncertainty surrounding new employees and whether they can perform essential job functions to your high standards. This is especially true for jobs with physically or mentally grueling demands, where potential employees can't truly prove their capable until they're on the job, which by then might be too late.

When employees aren't who they say they are in the interview process, it can lead to lost trust, productivity, revenue and even safety concerns, depending on the job. That's where pre-employment testing comes into play, and why it can be a crucial part of the hiring process for many modern businesses.

What is Pre-Employment Testing?

Pre-employment testing is like any normal qualification screening, only it measures a wider range of abilities and determines whether a job candidate can safely and effectively perform essential job functions. Testing is often referred to as a functional capacity evaluation, which helps measure a variety of physical components, such as:

  • Strength
  • Fitness
  • Dynamic and progressive lifting
  • Cardiovascular metrics
  • And other essential job functions

Employers will often require candidates to undergo a functional capacity evaluation after an official job offer has been made, but before the employee begins work. Not all pre-employment testing is physical. Some can be cognitive or measure personality traits and work habits. Drug and alcohol screenings are often a part of pre-employment testing, as well as a clinical medical history review.

What are the Benefits of Pre-Employment Testing?

The benefits of conducting pre-employment testing go well beyond finding great candidates. In fact, there are a variety of proven benefits for employers who utilize pre-employment screening during the hiring processes.

Faster Selection Process - Hiring new employees can be time consuming. Pre-employment testing can take the guess work out of the process and shorten evaluation periods, which minimizes wasted resources.

Better Safety - Hiring employees not capable of safely handing equipment or who are a danger to themselves due to limited physical abilities is a major safety concern. Pre-employment testing provides better assurance that employees won't be a danger to themselves or co-workers.

Cost Reductions - Pre-employment screening can help prevent work days lost to injury, ultimately mitigating lost revenue and lowering medical expenses. The interviewing, hiring and training process is not cheap, and should also be viewed as an investment. Going through that process with an employee who ultimately isn't qualified can be a costly waste of resources.

Decreased Turnover - Studies have shown that hiring new workers who are a good fit for their job leads to higher short and long-term retention rates. In fact, one study showed a 13 percent decline in workforce turnover after implementing pre-employment integrity screening.1

Improved Morale - A workplace filled with qualified and capable employees generates better morale and trust among co-workers and leads to improved productivity.

Minimize Fraudulent Workers' Comp Claims - It's an unfortunate truth that a small percentage of employees abuse the Workers' Compensation system by filing fraudulent claims. Pre-employment testing helps lower injury rates, minimizing the number of claims made. Many pre-employment testers, such as West Texas Rehabilitation Center, provide post-injury testing as well, helping to quell the small fraction of fraudulent filers.

Choosing the Right Pre-Employment Test Provider

There are many companies that provide pre-employment screening. Some employers may even opt to conduct their own pre-employment screening. Like many things, not all pre-employment screenings are created equal. It’s important you choose the right pre-employment testing company so your business or organization can reap the benefits of hiring qualified and capable job candidates.

There can also be legal ramifications if a test is conducted in an unfair or prejudiced manner. Be sure any pre-employment screening adheres to the American with Disabilities Act (ADA) and Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), both of which limit what is and isn’t expected of a job candidate during a test.

The ADA prohibits discrimination of “otherwise qualified individuals” due to disability in terms of hiring potential, but it does provide employers the ability to avoid hiring candidates who would pose a direct threat to the health and safety of their co-workers, so it's important your screening works within those boundaries.

Pre-Employment Testing and Employer Services in West Texas

At West Texas Rehabilitation Center, we understand the importance of hiring great candidates and creating a safe and productive workplace. We work with WorkSTEPS to provide employers with quality pre-employment screenings, in addition to a number of employer services, such as drug and alcohol testing, on-site testing, CPR and first aid training and much more.

If you're interested in having pre-employment screenings administered before you make your next big hire, visit our website or call one of our three West Texas locations today!