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Don’t shy away from personality tests, but know the risks

Issue: Personality tests are the first line of hiring defense at many organizations. Nearly 30 percent of employers use such tests.
Risk: A poorly designed test can open you up …

Quiz applicants on basic skills; don’t wait for national test

Issue: Business and government leaders will unveil a new national job-readiness test next year that you can give entry-level applicants.
Benefit: Cut down on bad entry-level hires. Spot high-school grads …

Personality tests don’t trammel constitutional rights, but beware risks

Many employers use personality tests to identify job-related characteristics, such as maturity or emotional stability. But these tests can carry legal risk when applied incorrectly.
If you use personality tests, …

Hair samples are a legitimate method of drug tests.

A police department ordered one if its officers to provide a hair sample for a drug test after it suspected him of using cocaine. The test, which involved shaving a patch …

Keep applications clean; jotting notes may trigger hiring-bias claims

Don’t track applicants’ race, sex, religion, age or national origin information on their applications or any other pre-offer documents unless you’re required to do so under certain affirmative-action laws. And if …

Cite Return-to-Work Tests in Drug/Alcohol Policy


Q. One of our employees was recently in jail for traffic and drug violations. Before he returns to work, what guidelines can we follow to ensure that he’s drug-free? Will we be discriminating if we require a drug test before allowing him back on site, even though we didn’t require this test when he was hired? —M.Z., Washington

Use personality tests as tool, not stand-in, for hiring process

Issue: When can (and should) you use personality testing to screen applicants? Benefit: More tests are available online, which makes them easier and cheaper …

Hire drivers? Start collecting more background info

The U.S. Transportation Department has unveiled new rules that require employers to more closely review applicants’ professional driving safety records and drug-testing history. The rules also require you to make that …

Identify employees with substance-abuse problems

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Smoke out users who try to beat your drug tests

Issue: Cheap new products make it easier to thwart workplace drug tests. Risks: You could inadvertently be adding more substance abusers to the payroll. Action: Thwart drug-test cheaters with …