Snowflake Test: An Ultimate Guide To A Personality Test

Hiring & recruitingTesting
January 31, 2023

The Snowflake test is a set of questions that evaluate a person’s flexibility. None of the test questions are racist or hateful, but they include some challenging and arguable concepts. Some believe these questions can be intruding, unethical, and illegal.

The term ‘Snowflake’ is usually used to describe people who don’t have an open mind. Snowflake is also used for people who get easily offended or those who can’t accept or listen to others’ perspectives. This term is also used for people who believe no one is better than them in the whole world.

The Snowflake test is a personality test. This test involves a set of questions for job applicants’ points of view and political beliefs. This test evaluates if the candidate is a Snowflake because a snowflake candidate is not a good fit for the company.

The chief executive officer of Silent Partner Marketing, Kyle Reyes, designed the test questions. After a video of his company went viral, many qualified candidates started sending their resumes to his company.  

Recruiting qualified, talented, and flexible employees is key to a business’s success. Talent is one of the crucial criteria for hiring a candidate. Many employers want to hire candidates who can deal with complicated tasks and challenging circumstances.

The snowflake test is famous among Generation Z because they get labeled as “Snowflakes” more than expected.

Millennials believe they have been called “Snowflakes” because they don’t want to accept the strict unnecessary workplace environment and culture rules. 

If you already took a Snowflake test before, you should know that there is no specific format available for all tests. Some Snowflake tests include fun questions, while others involve serious, deep questions. But, there is one thing that all Snowflake tests have in common: the questions are complicated and profound. 

The history of the Snowflake test

The snowflake origin goes back to the 1800s. At that time, some Americans called white people who supported slavery “Snowflakes,” But a hundred years later, in the 1900s, the term was used by the black community themselves, and their main goal was to get the attention of some black people who were pretending to be white!

In 2010, the term “Snowflake” entered politics. Political party supporters started using this term to annoy people who were supporters of other parties. As a result, a Snowflake was referred to as a person who got insulted easily.

Why do people use the Snowflake test?

self assessment

Some businesses use snowflake tests to eliminate compassionate and delicate job applicants from hiring. But besides recruitment purposes, people use the test for below reasons:

  • Self-assessment: This test is used as a self-assessment tool for some individuals (especially Gen-Z and Millennials). People want to ensure they are not considered sensitive or weak by society.
  • Cancel-culture: Canceling other people is a part of today’s reality. When people are labeled as “snowflakes,” it is one way that people get canceled. People take the snowflake test to determine whether they deserve this label. 
  • Political points: The “Snowflake” term has always been a part of political discussions. Some individuals take the snowflake test to prove their beliefs.

What questions does the snowflake test cover?  

Kyle Reyes published the original 30 “Snowflake” questions on his Facebook in 2017. Many of these questions were designed to describe a candidate’s ethical, political, and religious beliefs and points of view.

Below are 20 original snowflake questions from Kyle Reyes’s Facebook page:

  1. How many sick days should employees have? 
  2. How do you feel about guns? 
  3. What do you think about employees or clients who carry weapons? 
  4. Should “trigger warnings” be issued for controversial information for clients or the company? 
  5. What do you think about the police? 
  6. Have you cried recently, and why? 
  7. What do you think about the current college environment concerning a future workforce? 
  8. What’s your usual breakfast? 
  9. What do you do if a colleague comes to you with the idea that sucks? 
  10. What do you think about the First Amendment? 
  11. What does faith mean to you? 
  12. You’re in Starbucks with two friends. Someone says somebody is coming in with a gun in 15 seconds to shoot patrons. They offer you a weapon. Do you take it? What do you do next?
  13. What does America mean to you? 
  14. You see someone step foot on an American flag. What do you do? 
  15. What does “privilege” mean to you? 
  16. You arrive at an event for work, and there’s a major celebrity you’ve always wanted to meet. What do you do next?
  17. How do you deal with bullies?
  18. What do you feel about safe spaces in challenging work environments?
  19. Outside of standard benefits, what benefits should a company offer employees?
  20. What should the national minimum wage be?

 Is the Snowflake test controversial?

The snowflake test can help businesses discover problematic candidates among job applicants. But on the other hand, this test can also be controversial considering the following reasons:

Beliefs are not a Culture

Critics believe the snowflake test can’t help employers find applicants who are fit for the job position. Instead, they suggest that this test help employer find people with the same beliefs as them. A wise employer should look for candidates with higher skills than other applicants. 

Moreover, hiring people with a different attitude than you doesn’t guarantee that you will have an active, healthy work environment. Similar beliefs don’t spread a culture. You are just going to work with a group of people who are like you.

You can only extend your intellectual knowledge if you work and listen to people like you. You can’t create an innovative workplace by recruiting people like you. A creative work environment comes from people with different beliefs and ideas. 

People Can Lie With Their Tests

An issue with the snowflake test is that you need help understanding if someone is lying on the test. People tend to lie for a higher chance of getting a job during tests. They lie about their experiences and skills on resumes or tell stories they think the employer may like. 

Another problem is that people learn the answers to the questions before the rest to impress the employer. These people can get higher scores than other applicants because they already know the answers. In this case, will they be qualified when they start working based on what or who they pretend to be?

The test doesn’t evaluate the performance.

The snowflake test can’t assess a candidate’s performance in the work environment. It identifies people who have the same personality characteristics. If you use this test as an employer, you can’t find qualified candidates who can handle the job and complicated tasks. In the end, you will receive followers. 

Five snowflake test alternatives

The Snowflake test is controversial and is not a reliable test for pre-employment assessment. Still, pre-employment testing is the most constructive method of screening job applicants.

Personality traits and culture are essential factors in choosing the right job candidate. Still, employers should consider other crucial aspects such as soft and hard skills, cognitive ability, precise judgment, etc. 

Plus, mixing different tests can give you a substantial comprehension of the applicant’s profile.

Here are five pre-employment tests you can use as an alternative to the snowflake test.

Personality and culture-add tests

personality and culture test

This test evaluates candidates’ personality traits and what they can add to the company’s culture. This test can help employers assess if a candidate can handle tasks or will struggle to take care of responsibilities. 

This test measure

  • the job applicant’s energy
  • how they evaluate information
  • how they make critical decisions
  • and what style of living they prefer

Personality and culture tests will help employers speculate about a candidate’s job performance based on their role in the company.

Cognitive ability tests

This test evaluates an applicant’s thinking skills, such as problem-solving, reasoning, and verbal capabilities. This test will help recruitment managers asses candidates’ mental ability in the work environment. 

For example, a problem-solving test evaluates a candidate’s skills. These skills involve analyzing the problem and calculating the pros and cons before deciding. A numerical reasoning test will determine the applicant’s ability to use logical reasoning.

Six different cognitive ability tests are as below: 

  • Attention to Detail test
  • Problem-Solving test
  • Critical Thinking test
  • Numerical Reasoning test
  • Reading Comprehension test
  • Spatial Reasoning test

Situational judgment tests

This test describes a particular situation to candidates about how they will handle the circumstances. Typically, these situations focus on crisis management, stress, ethics, and other business-related subjects.

The test evaluates how well a job applicant can make decisions. The snowflake test can be helpful while taking responsibility in management roles. 

Role-specific skills test

This test concerns the job applicant’s role in a firm or business. These tests will evaluate the candidate’s skill level to execute the specified position. Each test is customized to ask questions about the job role and assess a candidate’s knowledge and skills. 

The results of these tests offer a deep understanding of the candidate’s ability and allow you to compare candidates closely.

Language skills test

This test calculates the applicant’s expertise in a particular language. It is convenient to discover candidates with wanted skill levels for roles requiring a high level of stated language.  

If language tests are used sufficiently before the interview, they can help identify applicants with essential language skills.

To sum it up

The “snowflake” test is unreliable and insubstantial for the hiring process. 

Instead of discovering and hiring people with the same beliefs as yours, find candidates with the below skills: 

  • Find people who are problem solvers by asking them about actual critical circumstances. This process will prove that they can think outside the box.
  • Spend some time with candidates by setting up a casual interview. For example, do the interviews outside your office. You can also arrange an activity that will describe if an applicant is who they claim to be.
  • Offer candidates an experimental period. Let them know that they have the opportunity to show their talent and skills during a specific time. If they want to get the role, they have to prove themselves.

You have to focus on candidates’ skills instead of considering their beliefs to promote your company’s level of success. Moreover, If you insist on trying the Snowflake test for yourself, we won’t stop you. Just remember, “Snowflake” is nothing more than a term. 

It would be best if you didn’t let this term from defining your self-worth. Ultimately, words can’t change your personality. If you have a unique way of understanding the world and others don’t like it, it is not your fault!