If you’ve interviewed for a job recently, it’s probable that you were asked to take a talent assessment or several tests as part of the hiring process. Organizations are recognizing that these assessments combined with structured interviews can significantly increase the likelihood of success on the job.

Use of pre-hire assessment tests and popular personality instruments such as the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator® has more than doubled to 57 percent with large employers over just the past few years according to the Wall Street Journal, and their use is growing among mid-sized employers, mostly due to advancements in technology that make administering the tests simpler and more affordable.

Indianapolis-based Performance Assessment Network, or PAN, is one of the leading providers in the $3 billion pre-hire talent assessment industry, helping organizations of all sizes hire, develop and retain the right talent. The 90+ person tech firm has been on a hiring spree — 12 new hires so far this year — fueled by double-digit revenue growth.

Jim Holm

Jim HolmCEO of PAN

“PAN’s purpose is to develop and provide insights to companies as they go through the hiring process. We offer a simplified assessment experience for identifying, selecting, and building talent using science and data,” said Jim Holm, CEO of PAN.

“Last year we tested 2.5 million people around the country to help them identify whether or not they would be a good fit for companies and we’ve developed some really nice insights as to the patterns of what instruments organizations use to get ahead in the world of hiring.”

Through the years, PAN has expanded into delivering new ways to simplify the assessment process and make it more efficient, including an automated workflow module, self-authoring tools and personalized reports builder.

PAN has worked with many large federal agencies in the U.S. government, around 70 Fortune 500 companies and have more than 2000 customers in total in the 500-5,000 employees range. They offer assessments that help companies hire for cultural fit, cognitive or intellectual ability, integrity, and whatever other areas may be requested to help clients meet their business objectives. Six staff psychologists (PhD and master’s degree level) help determine the best assessment tools and build customized tests when needed. PAN also acquired the world-renowned 16pf® Questionnaire last year to offer greater utility to their clients.

Key industries PAN targets include government agencies, retail, banking and manufacturing, but Holm explained that the company has a high degree of success with any employer that has at least one high-volume turnover job, an executive hiring application or both.

“We take our solution to market as an enterprise software platform which distinguishes us in a crowded market. PAN also has the world’s largest catalog of third party assessments to complement world class technology,” Holm said.


PAN’s go-to-market as a “sticky” software-first solution rather than any one specific test allows their customers the flexibility to change assessments that aren’t meeting the needs of their hiring processes without having to go through the change of management and expense of training HR managers to use a new platform all over again.

“If they have the PAN platform in place they can very quickly and easily swap out one test for another and the rest of the processes within the business all stay the same,” Holm said.

Currently, the company is leading the market in pre-employment screening, but over the next five years, PAN’s goal is to become “the people measurement company” covering six different potential growth areas:

  1. Job Validation — helping define the knowledge, skills and abilities to do a job well
  2. Pre-hire Assessments — making sure you’re hiring the right person for the job
  3. Post-hire Assessments — indicating where new employees should focus training to be as effective as possible
  4. Culture Surveys — helping companies understand what is happening within their organizations daily, weekly, monthly and annually so they can keep good people
  5. Exit Surveys — ensuring that employers understand why people are leaving their organization and what they can do better
  6. High Potential Identification Management and Training – helping companies identify the individuals who have a huge impact on the business and helping them grow their influence in the organization.


PAN Am I Job Ready? website
This screen shot from PAN’s “Am I Job Ready?” represents the company’s first foray into the workforce development space.

The website “Am I Job Ready” (www.amijobready.com), PAN’s first foray into the workforce development space, is already in beta on a broad scale and this fall goes live with about 20 institutions nationwide including Purdue University, Ivy Tech, University of Michigan and Kentucky Community Colleges. The badging portal helps individuals identify necessary soft skills and personal preferences, and then provides short training modules that can help them land a job or get promoted.

As the use of assessments continues to grow and evolve with Gex X assuming leadership positions and more Millennials joining the workforce, PAN is poised for exciting growth. Originally founded by two clinical psychologists 16 years ago, PAN’s growing Indiana workforce is putting the state on the map for world-class talent measurement software and solutions.

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