Companies are turning to personality tests as remote and hybrid work becomes normal

HR manager shows results of personality test
(Image credit: Ken Faught/Toronto Star via Getty Images)

Companies have used personality tests for career advancement and sometimes hiring decisions for years, but the disruption to office culture from the COVID-19 pandemic has given them a new, added purpose, Emma Goldberg reports in Sunday's New York Times. Managers are turning to the roughly $2 billion personality testing industry to help them curate remote and hybrid work teams and keep workers engaged.

For individuals using some of the 2,000 personality assessment tools available today, they may provide some "earnest and indulgent" fun, "like an iPhone burst of selfies fused with the self-help section of an airport bookstore," Goldberg writes. But "some managers find them particularly useful for remote teams, because personality tests can prompt much-needed conversations about who workers are as humans, and how they like to interact" — for example, "whether they crave water cooler banter, or dread the holiday party."

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Peter Weber, The Week US

Peter has worked as a news and culture writer and editor at The Week since the site's launch in 2008. He covers politics, world affairs, religion and cultural currents. His journalism career began as a copy editor at a financial newswire and has included editorial positions at The New York Times Magazine, Facts on File, and Oregon State University.