Executive Assessment Overiview

Senior-level placement is critical to organizational success and ongoing health. These decisions are often costly, both in hard and soft dollars. An assessment allows the hiring leadership team and/or board members to broaden the base of information available on each top candidate by offering objective information on an individual’s strengths, leadership style, development needs, personality, and conceptual abilities. The executive assessment focuses on what is needed for today’s challenges and tomorrow’s strategic efforts.


When to use it?


External Candidate Selection

Internal selection and promotions

Merging companies to assess talent

Succession Planning and High potential development


Getting Started


Understanding the culture, the specific position requirements, and leadership needs now and for the future is critical in providing assessment information. To begin, key leadership members are interviewed on the competencies needed for success, the specific needs of the role, and the strategic direction. Relevant documents are reviewed; these may include recent strategic planning initiatives, business plans, board presentations, etc. Aligning new talent with business needs will assist the leadership team in achieving their goals and selecting an individual who will complement the team.


The Candidate Process


Executive assessment combines data from several sources. Information can be obtained from background experiences, standardized testing, interviews, and feedback from others.

A structured battery of tests often administered via the Internet assesses cognitive capacity, decision-making style, values, beliefs, management capabilities, interpersonal skills, emotional intelligence, and leadership approach.  The testing will take from three to four hours depending on the battery chosen. The candidate also provides information on their background. Using the testing data, the senior assessor may conduct an interview either in person or over the telephone to explore areas suggested by the assessment data and to fully understand how various traits, skills, and personality characteristics are translated into day-to-day work interactions. A 360-feedback process, which provides feedback on leadership behavior from multiple sources, can also be used, particularly when the assessment is for promotion or development of internal candidates.




The senior assessor writes a report that concisely summarizes the objective, behavioral and interview findings that address the candidate’s fit with the position. The assessor can also provide feedback to the candidate on their style and provide insight into practical behaviors for success as well as potential detailers. An oral discussion with the hiring managers and human resources is also conducted quickly after the assessment. The report can be customized to the individual company. Comparison norms can also be compiled with a large enough database to compare fit of the candidate with successful staff. These are more likely to occur for positions with larger numbers in the organization.




Pricing varies based on the process chosen and the amount of upfront work needed to provide the assessor with a solid knowledge of the company, values, and leadership needs. In ongoing relationships, the upfront process is shortened. Pricing also varies by level in the organization.


Range: $1,500-3,000 plus the upfront time at the consulting rate of $250/hour and the interview. A phone interview is often part of the package.

On-site interviews are billed at a minimum of 2-3 hrs depending on travel time, etc.


Up-front discussion is conducted with the client to discuss the role, the challenges, and understand the company as well as why the position is open.  This could include a survey of the Executive team to determine the desired competencies. Billed hourly $250/hr


Sample Test Battery for Controller or Director of Finance


Personality (Assess), Hogan Development Survey (identifies career derailers), Hogan Business Reasoning, and Report. Includes phone discussion with hiring executives on candidates.


Cost                             $2000,

Phone interview          $500


Up-front discussion with the client to discuss the role, challenges, and understand the company as well as why the position is open. Could include a survey of the Executive team to determine the desired competencies. Billed hourly $250/hr


Sample Test Battery for addition to the Senior Executive team (i.e. CFO, COO, CEO or President)


Hogan Executive Battery (Business Reasoning, Development Survey, Personality, Values); WAVE Personality, Emotional Intelligence, Watson Glazer critical thinking Phone Interview.   


Cost                                         $ 3,000- 3.500



Panel Structured Interviews


Panel interviews based on key competencies for this role can be custom developed for a client.  Training is provided to the interviewers on using the process, scoring the interviews, and comparing candidates.  Cost varies by client needs and the amount of up-front work done previously with the client.


On-line testing with standardized reports: Cost varies from $300-$500. Basic screening costs are very inexpensive for hourly staff, $25-50.  Discounts apply for quantity.




Thanks for your interest.  For more information call: Diana L. Clarke, Ph.D.

(330)239-1646 or (330) 289-2311