Using assessments to ensure science-based succession

When selecting the correct employees, IO Practitioners are often the first port of call for most businesses. The profession of IO Psychology has a well-developed and credible reputation of being able to discern real from apparent talent.

Nowhere is this more important than when organisations plan for leadership succession. In today’s fast paced and uncertain work environment, IO Practitioners need to be both agile in their approaches and even more certain of the value-add of appropriate selection methods.

Recently, Hannah Mulaney and Stephanie Rudbeck from Saville Assessments and Willis Towers Watson and product partners to tts, argued that organisations ought to replenish their talent pools by keeping an eye out for internal candidates with leadership potential.

Knowing who these talented employees are is where IO Practitioners can add substantial value. In this regard, it is vital to use best-of-breed assessment tools that have the resolution needed to not only measure the traditional competencies associated with job performance, but also those that can give an organisation a view of:

·         The future-fit of a candidate for succession roles that are sure to change in the short term

·         The culture-fit of candidates to the organisational vision

·         The impact a candidate is likely to have within their team and leadership function

Once appropriate assessment frameworks are applied to succession, IO Practitioners should motivate for such data to form a central part of any strategic succession plan within their organisations.

The reason? Most senior executives are sceptical whether they have so-called “ready-now” talent that can be placed in leadership positions should the need arise. In a recent study of multinational executives, only 23% were convinced that they had the right successors in their talent pool

If you would like to know more about how assessments can enrich your succession planning, why not contact us at and a consultant will be in touch.


(Source: Financier Worldwide, August 2017)