The Interplay of Knowledge and Personality in the Treasurer Test

In the Treasurer Test, the Treasury Knowledge and Personality Traits sections don’t stand alone – they intertwine to reveal valuable insights. It’s a key tool we use at Treasurer Search to assess the fit between a candidate and a company. While it’s not the sole determinant, it helps confirm the alignment between expertise, skills, and personality traits, ensuring a more holistic evaluation. In this blog, Pieter explores some patterns we’ve observed in the Treasurer Test results that shed light on the dynamic relationship between knowledge and character.

By Pieter de Kiewit

What pattern can we verify with the Treasurer Test Results?

At Treasurer Search we use the Treasurer Test in our recruitment processes to solidify our advice about the match between a company and a potential employee. The Test is not a single source of truth but one of multiple ways to measure. Sometimes there are doubts about a certain aspect, for example in the risk management expertise of a candidate, then the Test comes in handy. In most cases however, it is to get more certainty about the pattern that we already see: Does the report in which we see the results of the Treasurer Test tell the same story as the CV, the presentation and the references?

No Risk Manager in skills nor personality

It is very interesting for us when the expertise and skills seem to make a logical connection with the personality of a candidate. See for instance how this candidate scored on the Risk Management part:

First, what can we see here? In the upper semi-circle, we see that this person scored on the very left side and thus scored in the lowest 20% of candidates with similar experience. This person still could have answered many questions correctly, but compared to his peers she scored worse.

In the lower semi-circle, we see the absolute score of correct answers given. There are time limits when taking the Treasurer Test. The first questions are easier and give fewer points, and the last ones are harder and give more points. As we see this person scored a little bit better on this apsect, she most likely answered an above-average number of questions, or he answered the last questions better than peers who did worse at this aspect.

In the below diagram, we see how the same candidate scored on the personality trait Thoughtful, after taking the personality traits part of the Treasurer Test

First about what we can see in this diagram. In the upper semi-circle, we can see how the candidate scored on the Thoughtful trait compared to the general population. These results tell us that this candidate can be considered very Thoughtful. In the lower semi-circle, the results are once again compared to your peers who have similar treasury knowledge as him/her.. 

One could argue that the most cautious person is the best risk manager, and does not take risks at all. Better would be to stay this leads to a standstill and that does not describe risk management just being frozen. The reality is that front-office dealers in treasury departments, who are considered to be risk managers, do not show a similar personality profile. Most of them land on the other side of the semi-circle.

So with this example in which both scores on the far right side of the circle, this is an example that expertise and personality seem to be aligned. In common sense word: normally you are not an expert in a task you do not like and execute. 

Corporate Finance expertise if you keep an eye on the further future.

Let’s present a second example.

In the upper semi-circle, we can see that this lady has a certain treasury skill she is very good at, in comparison with her peer group. Both in percentage right as in actual point scoring.

If we take a look at how she scores on the personality trait Forward-looking, in comparison with her peer group and general population we can see the following.

We can all agree: As we all know, in corporate finance one is responsible for managing the balance sheet and, ideally, works with the people in the company who decide upon strategy of the organisation. This person scores on both circles on the far right, which means that she can be considered excellent for a corporate finance job.


So even within the Treasurer Test, one can see if results are consistent if the connection can be made between treasury expertise and personality. In our position as a treasury recruitment consultant we assess our client and the job opening. To assess the potential candidate we use various instruments and extend this consistency check. As we deal with people, one can never predict with 100% certainty but also in our role, we can do good or better risk management. But the Treasurer Test definitely helps us in this process.

If you want to know more about incorporating the Treasurer Test in your recruitment or career, feel free to let us know.

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Wout van Wijlick, Manager of the Treasurer Test

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