Organizational psychology: What it is, benefits & tools

Organizational psychology focuses on helping companies assess employees’ skills, abilities, perceptions, and potential to achieve the organization’s goals while contributing to their human and professional development.

In this article, you will find out what it consists of, what its benefits are and the most important tools it uses to improve the performance and well-being of the workforce.

What is organizational psychology?

In simple terms, organizational psychology studies human behavior in the workplace. It focuses on evaluating individual, group, and organizational dynamics and using that research to identify solutions to problems that improve the well-being and performance of an organization and its employees.

Organizational psychology is primarily concerned with aligning the interests of the company and the needs of its workforce. Its objective is to improve employees’ quality of life and conditions to achieve outstanding performance and efficiency.

Organizational psychologists study how decisions are made, how effective organizational communication is, and how team members interact and collaborate. Knowing the answers to these questions and many others helps business owners assess where to change systems and dynamics to make their business work better.

Benefits of Organizational Psychology

Here are some of the benefits of organizational psychology for both companies and employees:

  • For the companies

Implementing an organizational psychology program offers numerous benefits for a company, since it is a field of psychology that tries to maintain the interest of the company and its employees jointly and beneficially. In addition, it performs conciliation functions between the two.

The objective of this area is to propose strategies to strengthen the organizational culture. This contributes to creating a healthy environment, which significantly increases productivity and employee commitment. Therefore, this would imply a reduction in turnover costs and new hiring processes.

  • For employees

The tasks performed by organizational psychology are responsible for helping to solve problems more efficiently. On many occasions, they even have the help of the employees themselves so that they feel part of the solution.

In addition, this area also reflects an improvement in employees’ quality of life. Psychologists try to know their preferences and promote measures that allow them to opt for a greater reconciliation with their personal life, career plans, relationship with their co-workers, etc., allowing them to be more comfortable with their work.

Organizational psychology main areas

The main areas of organizational psychology are:

1. Recruitment

Organizational psychology help the human resources department develop the hiring and personnel selection processes, including job advertisements, the definition of essential qualifications, and the development of selection evaluations.

2. Employee training and development

Industrial psychologists conduct job analyzes in which the skills and abilities needed to perform a specific job effectively are determined. The information and insights gained from these analyzes are used to develop and evaluate employee skills development and training programs.

3. Employee satisfaction and work-life

Organizational psychology deals with job satisfaction, work motivation, health, safety, and well-being of employees.

In this sense, the role of this area of psychology is to assess the well-being and happiness of employees at work, find ways to improve the workplace culture and apply programs to reconcile work and family life, if necessary. 

4. Performance evaluation

Organizational psychology helps organizations measure and manage employee performance by developing and conducting performance appraisals, identifying skill gaps, and providing feedback and recommendations.

The employee feedback obtained from these evaluations is often used to inform decisions regarding compensation and promotions.

5. Organization development and management

Organizational psychology is also concerned with organization structure and performance. An organization requires this area to determine the degree of efficiency, productivity, and profitability and help make decisions related to the organization’s work culture and structural changes.

Valuable tools for organizational psychology

Now that you know what organizational psychology is and what its benefits are, we will present you with four essential tools to put it into practice in your organization:

1. DISC Assessment for organizational psychology

The DISC methodology assesses an individual’s personality across four behavioral categories: dominance, influence, assertiveness, and conscientiousness. In this way, the DISC assessment helps employers in three ways: during recruitment, training, and resolving interpersonal conflicts.

For example, when interviewing a candidate, their personality profile can suggest a good fit for a particular job. When training an employee, teaching can be tailored to her learning style. Understanding their behavioral dynamics makes it easier to negotiate if problems arise between employees.

2. Hogan Personality Inventory (HPI)

The Hogan Personality Inventory (HPI) identifies talented people using two criteria: their bright demeanor and their strengths at work.

The Hogan Personality Inventory interviews are more efficient, matching candidates with roles where their skills can shine.

Bringing in people who fit the company culture makes better teamwork likely to occur. In addition, training programs can target staff needs, furthering their careers.

3. Occupational Personality Questionnaire

This tool assesses suitability for a specific position, team and work environment. Of the various test versions available, the OPQ32 is the most complete since the questions are designed to assess 32 personality traits relevant to the work environment.

The answers reveal the style of work of each one in three areas: thinking, feelings and relationships. Employers use the questionnaire for recruiting, team building, and preparing future leaders.

16 Personality Factors Questionnaire

This evaluation predicts how people will react to specific work situations. Compared to the 28 statements on the DISC, the 16PF has 185 multiple-choice sections, which take an average of 30 minutes to complete.

Each section contains several statements, which require the person to state their level of agreement on a five-point scale. Next, the test analysis ranks each trait low or high.

This personality test receives high marks for its realistic and practical application among organizational psychologists. Employers use the 16PF to identify the strongest candidates with promising potential for advancement.

Apply organizational psychology in your company!

Knowing your employees in depth from the moment of hiring is a fundamental factor to determine if it is an ideal option to fulfil the role and activities required by your organization and implement optimal training and growth programs.

Remember that you can use QuestionPro to perform any of the above evaluations. If you still don’t know the platform, we invite you to create a free account to start testing all its features.

Or, if you are looking for a complete tool for managing your human capital, it is time for you to get to know QuestionPro Workforce, the platform specialized in the work environment, employee experience and much more. Schedule a demo now, or write us in the chat to get more information!