What You Need to Know About Cognitive Assessment

What You Need to Know About Cognitive Assessment

Human intelligence is the ability of a human’s mind to learn from every encountered situation from real life, deal with new experiences, speculate, observe and act according to situations. The overall human intelligence comprises of cognitive intelligence and emotional intelligence.

Quantitative, verbal, as well as spatial skills, solving tricky problems, quick learning is defined under cognitive intelligence. Whereas emotional intelligence is defined as the ability to understand one’s own and other’s emotions and thought the process and acting consciously while behaving and thinking.

Individual cognition and cognitive skill assessment are now high in demand. Charles Spearman in early 20th coined a term General intelligence or simply g factor (more info here). It is a central factor that influences cognitive abilities. It is powered by four cognitive brain processes (speed memory, visualization, attention, and memory).  The g factor plays a key role to find the positive correlation between the individual cognitive ability on different tasks. The performance of the individual’s ability on different tasks could be compared based on this.

Handling Various Special Circumstances During an Assessment Test

Here the question is how assessment tests can be customized and benchmarked to ensure the accuracy in talent assessment.  Matching the candidate’s cognitive skill with the work role demand is a way to deal with it. There is a possibility of three cases:

Case 1: Overqualified Pool

If the candidate pool performs outstandingly good than the job role demands. it means the level of the cognitive test is too easy for that candidate pool so that a higher number of talent are able to crack the test. In result, the company will have a large bunch of shortlisted candidate.

  • Problem with this approach:

The problem with this approach is the number of qualified candidates will be higher than the number of available jobs.

  • Solution:

Cognitive assessment tools that are used by organizations will help it to find the best of the best talent of the pool.  To pick the top performer recruiters need to increase the difficulty level of the assessment so that less number of candidates could ace it.

  • Verdict:

Selected Candidates are ideal for succession planning, leadership development, and high potential identification.

Case 2: Under-Qualified Pool

If the candidate pool performance is not up to the mark than the job role demands, this means the level of the cognitive test was too tough for that candidate pool, so that fewer number of talents are able to crack the test. As a result, the company will have a lesser, compromised bunch of shortlisted candidates.

  • Problem with this approach:

The problem with this approach is the number of qualified candidates will be lesser than the number of available jobs.

  • Solution:

Even though an organization has a slightly compromised talent still it is possible to fill its opening and make the best of a bad situation. It can be achieved by degrading the difficulty level of assessment test so that a large number of candidates could ace it.

  • verdict:

Such a talent pool is ideal for learning and development programs to improve their skills.

Case 3: Special Case

This is the most favourable case; the performance of the candidate pool in cognitive assessment coincides with job role requirements. Hence higher job satisfaction, better performance and higher growth of the organization will be shown in the result.

Application of cognitive intelligence assessment:

A significant correlation has been found between cognitive intelligence and work performance The minimum is 51% and the higher possibility can reach up to 84%. Higher cognitive ability is the benchmark of efficiency in the workplace and growth.

Test of cognitive intelligence is useful in anticipating success at the job. People with higher cognitive intelligence grasp knowledge quickly relevant to the job with a better rate. 

Cognitive intelligence assessment has been implemented:

  1. Across employee lifecycle
  2. Across industries

1 – Across employee lifecycle 

  • During the hiring process

During the hiring process, these tests help the recruiters to access the intelligence of candidates based on the three main criteria- core brain function, fluid intelligence, and crystallized intelligence.

Core brain function involves attentiveness, memory, and speed of response. Fluid intelligence involves creativity and abstract and spatial reasoning. Crystallized intelligence involves problem-solving skills, numerical and verbal reasoning. The assessment tests involve the design of tests based on the job requirement, talent pool IQ and further processing of results are based on the above three criteria.

  • Leadership development

A massive number of organizations are interested in cognitive assessment to measure an individual’s skill and competency to determine their leadership potential. Some tools are helpful for organizations facing the problem of leadership shortage. The cognitive assessment test is particularly designed in a way to find promising talent who are extremely eligible and show interest to lead right from the very initial stages of their career.

  • learning and development

Cognitive assessment tools that are used by organizations identify talents within and further plan for succession at various levels. It involves identifying competencies required for the post, use tools for assessment of employees, process assessment reports for employee identification and groom and track the growth of identified employees.

2 – Across Industries

  • IT sector

During the hiring and L&D cognitive assessment has increased. It is driven by the fact that the IT sector is repeatedly evolving, so this sector needs talent with high learning ability and updated with new technology.

  • Pharma

An increase in cognitive assessment over technical and psychometric analysis is observed across the pharma industry. Thus candidates with higher cognitive abilities are preferred.

  • BFSI

The consistently growing field of banking and finance require wealth manager and financial analysts. The employees need to have high cognitive abilities. Hence the demand for cognitive assessment tools is on a sudden rise.

  • Consulting

Cognitive assessment easily tests the processing of the brain power of the candidate whether the individual is enough capable of handling the responsibility of the consultant. Hence, it is a widely used tool in the consultancy sector.


The cognitive assessment helps to understand the individual’s psychology and to understand how much effort and time one is willing to invest when an opportunity has been given, according to https://academic.oup.com/acn/article/32/1/8/2720677. Thus, it is a widely used and accepted tool by the recruiters. The need is to design the assessment activity according to the job profile and process the assessment results in an optimum manner.



James Williams
James is our Lead Content Publisher here at Feeds Portal. He has worked with many top websites over the years, including BuzzFeed.

Log In

Forgot password?

Forgot password?

Enter your account data and we will send you a link to reset your password.

Your password reset link appears to be invalid or expired.

Log in

Privacy Policy

Add to Collection

No Collections

Here you'll find all collections you've created before.