Helping National Australia Bank

Reach their Hiring Potential



Company Size

35,000+ Employees


Improve Customer Service
& Reduce Turnover


Cognitive & Personality Assessments

700 > 50 Hours

Reduction in Recruitment Time


Cost Savings Per Year

20% Reduction

In Required Engagement Sessions

80% of

Candidates Successful in Final Engagement

nab banner

The Challenge

National Australia Bank has over 12,700,000 customers, 35,000 employees, operating with more than 1,700 branches and business banking centres globally.

Each year in Consumer Banking and Wealth, NAB recruits over 2,000 new employees. Almost 70% of hiring is at entry level in critical customer-facing roles in contact centres or in the branch network. The high volume of new hires reflects the turnover NAB experiences with, on average, nearly 50% leaving NAB within the first 12 months of employment.

The NAB recruitment team reviewed their existing process to identify the core issues and work with Testgrid to overcome challenges posed by the previously time-consuming, manual and transactional recruitment approach to filling vacancies.

Previous challenges in the NAB recruitment process

  • Inconsistent use of psychometric testing
  • Psychometric testing relies heavily on the technical skills of branch managers or people leaders to correctly interpret and utilise output
  • Labour intensive process that requires extensive manual interventions
  • Time consuming for hiring manager to conduct 1:1 interviews with candidates
  • Inconsistent experience by candidates and with referrals often pushed through to interview stage or probity
  • Decentralised demand management creates one-off style process

The primary aim of the new recruitment model proposed by NAB was to improve the timeframes and quality of new hires into entry-level customer-facing positions. The NAB recruitment team worked with Testgrid to review the existing volume recruitment processes.

The aims were to:

  • Improve the future performance of the call centre and provide exceptional customer service through identifying and hiring the best talent
  • Improve overall candidate experience throughout the recruitment process
  • Reduce the relatively high level of staff turnover
  • Reduce the time to hire, and improve overall process efficiency for the recruitment team
nab branch

The Solution

Following the initial consulting period, Testgrid recommended assessments that would work with the NAB redesigned process. These assessments included upfront screening using cognitive and personality assessments and video interviewing. After an initial Pilot project and ongoing data analysis, this testing was adapted further to use a highly predictive abstract reasoning assessment.

The combination of cognitive, integrity, and personality tests along with video interviewing and the use of data analytics have been demonstrated to provide exceptional validity to recruitment processes. Using a consistent and high-quality methodology enables suitable candidates to be easily identifiable.

Personality and integrity assessments in particular were used to provide insights into a candidate’s potential strengths and development areas, in alignment with the core values and culture of the National Australia Bank. The assessments used in the project were Talent Fit for volume hires and Saville and Hogan assessments executive-level roles.

One way video interviewing was utilised to allow NAB to hone in on communication skills, brand alignment, and dedication to the role, whilst reducing time to hire, and overall assessment centre costs.

Abstract Reasoning

abstract reasoning

Traitify Personality Assessments

Cognitive assessments were imperative to the success of the project, as they are crucial in determining whether candidates have the ability to do the work and how well they would perform in the role.

The assessments included:

  • Abstract reasoning – assesses problem-solving skills, how they will adapt to new tasks and how quickly they can learn
  • Verbal reasoning – assesses written and verbal communication skills and how well they interpret written information
  • Numerical reasoning – assesses the ability to understand and interpret data, graphs and tables, track KPIs and ROI, and manage budgets
  • Mechanical reasoning – assesses mechanical or spatial reasoning skills

Assessing Volume Hires

Talent Fit was used for volume hires as the tool provides such insights as to the types of roles, careers, or workplace culture and values the candidates may be best suited to.

Reporting can be customised to a specific job profile, or to your organisation’s competency framework. Talent Fit is a valuable assessment for efficient, high-volume candidate screening or shortlisting, and measuring organisational alignment.

Talent Fit

talent fit assessment

Assessing Executive Team

Saville Wave was used alongside our Hogan 360 assessment to identify the best executive talent. The assessments ummarises responses from different raters to the 39-45 questions across a seven-point effectiveness scale. This tool is customisable to suit project requirements.

The tool is designed for use in personal development, coaching, leadership development, and delivering insightful feedback.

Saville Wave

saville wave

Hogan assessments implemented for the executive team. The Hogan report summarises top strengths and top improvement opportunities and includes a development-focused action planning section. This assessment is often used in

  • Leadership & Career Development
  • Talent Identification
  • Team Building
  • Succession Planning
  • Research & Analytics

Hogan 360

hogan assessment

Interviewing Candidates Faster

nab video call

One Way Video Interviewing

One-way video interviewing allowed our client to interview multiple candidates quickly, as the hiring manager only had to look through a series of short videos, this allowed more candidates to be interviewed and progression decisions made faster.

nab customer service

The Result

Responding to Vacancies Faster than Ever

In summary, combining digital online assessments with building talent pools of quality candidates, enabled NAB to respond to vacancies faster. Talent pools provide a warm, ready-to-go pipeline of quality candidates to fill vacant roles. This shortens the time that vacancies are open and reduces the amount of time a hiring manager spends on vacancies.

The gains for National Australia Bank have been in three main areas. Firstly, the loss of candidates during the onboarding process has reduced by more than half. This has provided cost savings in excess of $7.4 million per year and substantially improved the business impact.

Secondly, the new process has proved more efficient than initially forecasted with a reduction from 720 hours to just 50 hours in a 3 month period of time spent on the hiring process by line managers. This has driven cost and time savings, allowing the Bank to focus on other areas of development. This has resulted in the number of required engagement sessions being reduced by 20% due to the suitability of the applicants being filtered through the process.

Thirdly, the quality of the candidates now participating in the final Engagement Centre process has dramatically increased with 80% of candidates at that stage being successful, a 78% increase on the previous process. In fact, NAB is now building a talent pool of great candidates for future requirements.

Testgrid is now using the data collected to help develop the recruiting process even further, by creating NAB benchmarks and candidate fit profiles. This will continue to improve the speed of the process and deliver an even higher return on investment for National Australia Bank.

“The calibre of candidates at the engagement centres is much higher”

– Tracy Wright | Lead, Service Proficiency, NAB

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Over 1m of our assessments were
conducted in FY22

8.2 Years

Average length of relationship
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