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Psychometrics for Personal and Professional Development

How psychometric testing can help organisations with personal and professional development

The unique challenges that employers face in manager and executive recruitment

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Standardising the process:

It’s exceedingly difficult to quantify (and therefore, justify), the ROI generated by personal and professional development initiatives if the process isn’t standardised. As a result, it’s essential to have a fixed plan that is repeatable.

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Collecting Data:

They are called “personal” development plans because they are tailored specifically to the development needs of each person. To achieve this, data need to be collected, identifying strength and development needs at the individual level.

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Actionable Information:

Collecting data is one thing, but actioning that data is a whole separate issue. The information gathered to inform development decisions need to be actionable, providing clear recommendations and next steps for development.

How psychometrics should be used in personal development

Psychometric tests are typically used to identify strengths (and possible overplayed strengths) and areas for development. These can include both behavioural dispositions and cognitive abilities, although more often than not, psychometrics are used to measure behavioural traits. Often, personality questionnaires are the tool of choice when structuring development plans, usually accompanying a 360 degree feedback process, performance review, or coaching session. The information gained from a personality questionnaire helps build self-awareness, flagging up issues that the employee should be cognizant of.

When using psychometrics of any kind, the employing organisation must be aware that personality and cognitive ability cannot be “improved”. No training course can turn an introvert into an extravert, it’s simply not possible. Instead, by making employees aware of their intrinsic personality profile, they can better identify areas to develop. Rather than turning into an extravert, introverts could, for example, be provided with resources to improve confidence in public speaking.

How Test Partnership can help

Test partnership’s personality questionnaire, the TPAQ, measures a broad range of psychological constructs, including the full big 5 model of personality, emotional intelligence, resilience, integrity, and industriousness. As a diagnostic tool for personal development, it offers unrivalled depth and breath, covering the entire behavioural landscape in a single assessment. The long form version of the assessment takes around 20-25 minutes to complete, whereas the short-form takes around 10-15 minutes to complete.

Our ability tests also have utility as personal diagnostic tools to support personal development. For example, when giving numerical reasoning tests to incumbent staff, you can identify the team members that are especially strong with numeracy, and those that could use additional resources to develop it. The same is true with other abilities, including critical thinking, verbal reasoning, and inductive reasoning. This is especially useful if the employing organisation did not use ability tests as part of their initial recruitment programmes, and thus incumbent staff were never tested.

Assessments we recommend for personal development

The following assessments are particularly useful as diagnostic tools for personal and professional development planning. The information gained from these assessments help identify areas for development, and areas of (potentially overplayed) strength.

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1) TPAQ-45 Complete Profile

This test measures the key personality traits which collectively comprise a person’s character, temperament and behavioural preferences.


The TPAQ-45 Complete Profile measures 45 distinct personality traits, providing an unparalleled level of depth when predicting future performance, job-fit, and culture-fit.

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2) TPAQ-27 Express Profile

This test measures the key personality traits which collectively comprise a person’s character, temperament and behavioural preferences.


A short form version of the TPAQ-45, the TPAQ-27 offers a reduced administration time, while still providing a great deal of depth and precision.

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3) Insights Series

The Insights Series of ability tests comprise computer adaptive numerical, verbal, and inductive reasoning tests.


Overall, completing all three assessments typically takes around 30 minutes, quickly and accurately quantifying an employee’s level of competence in these specific cognitive domains.

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