Dealers use various ways to decide which job candidate to hire. Some rely on gut instinct. Others utilize modern analytics. Then there’s handwriting analysis, reportedly gaining favor among U.S. employers.

An impending evaluation tool under development is a joint effort of employee-assessment specialist Logi-Serve and MSX International, a provider of services and technologies designed to help auto makers and their dealers improve retail performance.

The Michigan companies say they are collaborating on creating an online testing tool unique to the automotive industry, and based on Logi-Serve’s visual storyboarding platform and business-analytics system.

Logi-Serve has pioneered “accurately predicting an individual’s ability to provide quality customer service and sales,” says Pieter Van Rosmalen, MSXI’s global vice president. “Service excellence is key to the future of the dealership business model.”

Logi-Serve’s new tool “is fully complementary to our own related offerings around assessment, development and training people at retail,” he says. MSXI plans to integrate the tool across its business offerings.

Logi-Serve says its products simulate real-life workforce situations and predict competencies to improve the process of selecting and developing employees.

MSXI says doing that creates a superior talent pool for training in areas such as fostering customer loyalty and satisfaction.

“Our clients are looking for tools that can predict and drive higher levels of performance from their retail operations,” says Andrea Sorrenti, an MSXI vice president.

Meanwhile, a Louisville, KY, company is promoting its handwriting analysis as a way for dealers to screen job prospects.

“It is much more accurate and cheaper than personality tests,” says Stan Grubman, a spokesman for HuVista.com that charges $195 per analysis.

Handwriting samples don’t come from job applications. Instead, prospective employers ask candidates to write a “Why I want this job” half-page essay.

That’s sent to HuVista, where founder and owner Iris Hatfield does the analysis.

“You screen out candidates with anger-management problems or other undesirable personality traits that may not be readily apparent during a job interview,” Grubman says. 

Although skeptics may question the merits of handwriting analysis as a hiring aid, it has been a standard practice in Europe and is becoming more prevalent in the U.S., he says. “It’s definitely is not a parlor trick like palm reading or tarot cards.”

Grubman offers “interesting facts” about handwriting and its analysis:

  • Although family members often share writing characteristics, the odds of two samples being exactly alike are one in 68 trillion.
  • Even preschoolers’ doodles can be analyzed. So can an adult’s printing.
  • A high percentage of scientists, authors and mathematicians write very small most of the time.
  • There are more than 25 ways to cross a “t” and they all indicate something.

He also offers a stress-relieving tip: “The next time you’re feeling angry, try writing with very light pressure. If you can do it, you won’t be angry anymore.”

sfinlay@wardsauto.com