The understanding of organisational psychology has been progressively improving year after year. With this increased understanding, comes an awareness of the value it can bring to a business. Psychologists and organisational development professionals are being hired purely to understand how people operate in the workplace. Companies have recognized the importance of rolling out company-wide values – and the even greater importance of ensuring they’re upheld daily by employees.
Values in the workplace
Values are a way of guiding action and behaviour in the workplace. They can also help determine promotions, guide rewards systems and influence recruitment. When values resonate with an employee, we see increased motivation and drive, as well as increased levels of productivity. Hiring and assessing a prospective employees connection with company values can have an impact on their success at the company, and the overall profitability that employee has.
At People Solutions, our company values are closely tied with our reason for being – Relationships, Commercial Success, Creativity, Teamwork. An increasing number of organisations have integrity as a core value. What does this mean in a workplace environment, and how can it be assessed in the recruitment phase?
What is workplace integrity?
Generally, integrity in the workplace involves upholding ethics, possessing a sound judgement, honesty, being reliable and trustworthy in your actions. Possessing integrity is imperative for employees at all levels, though particularly as we move into more senior leadership positions. Integrity is beneficial for not only the organisation, but also the individual and team; being honest, transparent and reliable results in increased levels of trust amongst colleagues.
Workplace integrity is more relevant now than ever, particularly during the uncertainty of the worldwide events during 2020 and even through to this year, it has been, and still is, important for leaders to be open and honest.
Integrity allows organisations to work through volatile, uncertain and ambiguous marketplaces like the ones we are seeing today.
Why having ‘Integrity’ as an Organisational Value isn’t enough
Some organisations do not display value-alignment in their actions. For example, Enron, one of the most talked about Wall street scandals in history – one of Enron’s values was ‘Integrity’. Whilst a major part of upholding an ethical corporate culture is to lead and create business principals, it is still beneficial for employers to display the importance of integrity as a value, from the start of the recruitment and process.
Understanding a potential employee’s personality preferences, may help to understand the areas where further coaching or development can be implemented to help foster integrity behaviours during onboarding and retention. In turn, helping the organisation to act in alignment to their values.
How to select candidates with Integrity
Psychometric testing is all but one tool in the information gathering process during selection, however, it can offer deeper insight into area’s and preferences when it comes to assessing competencies such as integrity.
Two kinds of value-based measurements:
Overt integrity tests ask candidates about past behavior and attitudes in relation to counterproductive behavior such as theft or violence.
Personality assessments measure an individual’s preferences in the workplace that are associated with integrity such as conscientiousness, agreeableness and emotional stability.
Defining the assessment by role-specific value requirements
Whilst these assessments tend to have good reliability and validity, it is important to understand that the workplace environment is likely to have an impact on how that employee behaves in the role and hence the benefit of value-guided action to be imbedded into the organisational culture.
When selecting which assessments is more appropriate, it is important to consider the specific duties of the role the candidate is applying for, and whether the use of these assessments may have an adverse impact on minority group members such as socially disadvantaged people, people with a disability, those with lower levels of literacy or individuals from a different cultural background.
Recently, People Solutions provided psychometric assessment for selection services for a customer with an organisational value of ‘Integrity’. It was established that there were role-critical factors that required traits of integrity, such as conscientiousness, transparency and honesty in communication. For this role, People Solutions utilised a personality assessment and safety judgement assessment in order to gain further insights into the candidate’s preferences for integrity-based traits such as conscientiousness and to provide development suggestions for retention. The results of these personality assessments were written by psychologists into a tailored report format.
Contact People Solutions today to find out more about our psychometric assessments, and how to appropriately measure integrity during the selection processes.