Hogan Personality Inventory (HPI)

Hogan Personality Inventory (HPI) - Toolshero

Hogan Personality Inventory Test: This article explains the Hogan Personality Inventory Test in a practical way. Next to what it is, this article also highlights the development of this test, Scaling and Interpretation, the benefits, tips and a Hogan Personality Inventory Practice Test to get started! After reading it you will understand the basics of this human resources tool. Enjoy reading!

What is the Hogan Personality Inventory (HPI)?

The Hogan Personality Inventory (HPI) is a test designed to describe an individual’s personality and abilities when they are at their best.

Employers use this form of psychometrics to gain an in-depth understanding of the different candidates in an application process. This often involves leadership positions and roles in which certain personality characteristics play an important role.

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The test is also used by hiring managers to identify new talent who can be recruited to develop and grow within the company. This saves time in the long run by ensuring that the right person for a position is already present in a company.

The test is often used as a screening tool. This means that candidates can only come to an interview if they pass the test. This also saves the company time and therefore money.

The Hogan Personality Inventory (HPI) is part of the Hogan Assessment, which consists of three personality tests and two cognitive tests:

  • Hogan Personality Inventory (HPI)
  • Hogan Development Survey (HDS)
  • Hogan Motives, Values & Preferences Inventory (MVPI)
  • Hogan Judgment (HJ)
  • Hogan Business Reasoning Inventory (HBRI)

Development of the Hogan Personality Inventory (HPI)

HPI was conceived and developed by Robert McCrae and Paul Costa jr. The method is based on the Five-Factor Model of Personality, which was introduced in the mid-twentieth century.

Which personality traits are important?

The HPI test takes into account seven important personality traits.
These are:

  1. Ambition
  2. Sociability
  3. Interpersonal Sensitivity
  4. Prudence
  5. Inquisitive
  6. Learning Approach
  7. Adjustment

In addition, the test also tests six other scales:

  1. Stress Tolerance
  2. Service Orientation
  3. Reliability
  4. Administrative Potential
  5. Management Potential
  6. Sales Potential

Instinctively, candidates don’t want to score low, but it’s not necessarily good to score too high or too low on some traits.

Hogan Personality Inventory (HPI): Scaling and Interpretation

The seven personality traits of the Hogan Personality Inventory (HPI) can be interpreted in the following ways:


Ambition says something about the degree to which an individual takes initiative, competitiveness and the desire for leadership roles and success.

  • High Score: competitive, enthusiastic
  • Low score: not assertive, less interested in progress


Sociability is about extroversion and the need for social interaction in the workplace.

  • High Score: extroverted, colorful, impulsive, and teamwork
  • Low score: quiet, loner, preference to work alone

Interpersonal Sensitivity

Interpersonal sensitivity includes such things as tact, attentiveness, and the ability and desire to maintain relationships.

  • High score: warm, popular and friendly
  • Low score: candid, direct, independent


The prudence aspect of the Hogan Personality Inventory is about self-discipline, conscientiousness and a sense of responsibility

  • High score: reliable, thorough, organized
  • Low score: impulsive, creative, flexible


Inquisitive includes the desire to learn new things, creative potential and imagination.

  • High score: visionary, less attention to details, quick to understand
  • Low Score: focused, pragmatic, ability to concentrate

Learning Approach

An individual’s learning approach is about performance orientation and wanting to stay up-to-date.

  • High score: enjoying reading and learning (studying)
  • Low score: less interested in formal education, more practice-oriented


Adjustment includes the ability to remain calm under pressure, confidence, and self-esteem.

  • High Score: confident, optimistic, and resilient
  • Low score: tense, negative, irritable

Benefits of the Hogar Personality Inventory test

The Hogan assessment offers a broad insight into individual personalities. The testing is especially valuable to:

  • Assess a candidate’s strengths and weaknesses
  • Identify high potential employees and potential good leaders
  • Discover values and motivational factors in employees
  • Identify pitfalls when it comes to personality and future performance of a person
  • Predict a person’s performance and effectiveness and a person’s key drivers

Tips for preparing for the Hogan Personality Inventory test

Below we share some tips to prepare for the Hogan Personality Inventory test:


Take as many practice tests as possible. Several of these tests are available. In this article you will find a document with practice questions.

Continue to answer different types of questions until you are sure of the answers you are giving. Write down different types of questions you get and compare them to previous positions you’ve had.


Look closely at the qualifications and qualities listed in the original job description. Write these down and think about your own qualities in proportion to them. This can help you determine what kind of answers the organization would like to see. But don’t pretend: you could end up in a role where you’re not happy.

Ask questions

Ask questions to the recruiter or human resources manager at the organization where you are applying. They know exactly how the application procedure works and are often willing to inform you about this.


Just like taking exams or other tests, it is important to be rested. Get enough rest the night before the test and have confidence in the answers you will give.

Hogan Personality Inventory practice test

Below you will find a practice list with questions to prepare yourself for the type of questions you may be asked during the actual test.

Download the Hogan Personality Inventory practice test

This quistionnaire is exclusively for our paying Toolshero members. Click here to see if a membership is something for you!

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Now it’s your turn

What do you think? Do you recognize the explanation about the Hogan Personality Inventory (HPI)? Do you have experience with taking these types of tests? Have you downloaded and completed the sample questionnaire in this article? Can you share your experience with us? What kind of questions are you missing in this questionnaire? Do you think using questions like this gives an accurate picture of the employee? Do you have any tips or comments?

Share your experience and knowledge in the comments box below.

More information

  1. Hogan, R. (2002). The Hogan personality inventory. Big five assessment, 329-351.
  2. Mansi, A. (2007). Executive coaching and psychometrics: A case study evaluating the use of the Hogan Personality Inventory (HPI) and the Hogan Development Survey (HDS) in senior management coaching. The Coaching Psychologist, 3(2), 53-58.
  3. Hogan, J., Hogan, R., & Murtha, T. (1992). Validation of a personality measure of managerial performance. Journal of Business and Psychology, 7(2), 225-237.

How to cite this article:
Janse, B. (2022). Hogan Personality Inventory (HPI). Retrieved [insert date] from Toolshero: https://www.toolshero.com/human-resources/hogan-personality-inventory/

Original publication date: 02/05/2022 | Last update: 06/21/2023

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Ben Janse
Article by:

Ben Janse

Ben Janse is a young professional working at ToolsHero as Content Manager. He is also an International Business student at Rotterdam Business School where he focusses on analyzing and developing management models. Thanks to his theoretical and practical knowledge, he knows how to distinguish main- and side issues and to make the essence of each article clearly visible.


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