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Assessments

1. What is the difference between a “test” and an “assessment”?

Tests are normally used to verify skills and normally have a built-in pass or fail component. Assessments “take stock” there is no pass or fail, though an employer can choose to set a “cut-off score” for the items under measurement for a certain position or purposes.

For example, you may choose to verify that a potential administrative assistant possesses a certain level of skill using Microsoft Word. You would use a “Skill Test” for that purpose. Using a selection assessment, that same potential candidate could be also evaluated for integrity, work based personality and or cognitive/learning ability and compared to top performers of that position.

2. Can using assessments completely eliminate my other selection processes?

No.  No matter if you found a mythical “perfect” assessment, we would still recommend that it be part of a process that examines the “whole person”. Reference checks, minimum education requirements and required experience are part of every responsible selection process. Anyone who tells you otherwise may be putting you at legal risk.

Research has shown that education or experience alone is not necessarily predicative of success. That’s why most managers who have hired people have had the experience of candidates looking good on paper but becoming a nightmare after a few months. Assessments are very valuable to take stock of the capability and behavioral preferences of a candidate. By using the assessments early in the process you may decide to save the work and expense of evaluating the other attributes on someone who is a poor fit (cognitive/learning ability, personality and Job Fit).

3. What makes a “good” assessment?

A “good” assessment does the following things:

1. It measures what it claims to measure

2. It does so consistently and reliably. This means that if a person were to take the

        assessment again, the person would get a similar score.

3. It does so validly, that is the assessment measures characteristics that are

        important to predicting outcomes (i.e. a successful hire).

4. What is the most important consideration in selecting an assessment?

Validity is the most important issue in selecting any assessment or test (instrument). Validity refers to the characteristic that the instrument measures and how well the instrument measures that characteristic.

•   Validity evidence indicates that there is linkage between assessment scores and what it is intended to measure;

•   It can tell you what you may predict about someone from their assessment results; and

•   Validity also describes the degree to which you can make specific conclusions or predictions. It indicates the usefulness of the instrument.

5. What is the difference between reliability and validity?

Validity will tell you how “good” an assessment is for a particular situation; reliability will tell you how trustworthy a score on that assessment will be. You cannot draw valid conclusions from an assessment results unless you are sure about reliability. Even when an assessment is reliable, it may not be valid. You should be careful that any assessment you select is both reliable and valid for your situation.

6. Aren’t there different types of validity?

For workplace assessments:

•   Criterion-related validation requires demonstration of a statistical relationship between assessment results and job performance.

        — If the performance measure is obtained at the same time the assessment

           is given, it is called concurrent validity,

        — If it obtained at a later time, it is called predictive validity.

•   Content-related validation requires a demonstration that the assessment content represents important job-position related behaviors. In other words, assessment items should measure directly important requirements and qualifications for the job.

•   Construct-related validation requires a demonstration that the assessment measures the characteristic it claims to measure, and that this characteristic is important to the job position.

7. Where’s the “beef”? How do I know I have the best assessment per dollar invested?
  We’re so glad you asked! There are over 3,500 assessments and tests used for workplace related purposes. The choices can be overwhelming. Start a conversation with us and we’ll arrange to help you explore your options. We’ll give you information and ideas that will help you even if you choose another provider, but we’re confident you’ll be very happy with us.
8. How scientific do I personally have to get with this assessment stuff?

Not very.  We liken it to someone who goes to their local car dealer and purchases a highly rated automobile. Some drivers have an interest in every aspect of the transmission and engine. They are well versed in the “why” and “how” of the car's operation. Other drivers place the key in the ignition and drive to get where they want to go. They could care less about "under the hood" as long as they know the car is safe and reliable.

Likewise, your organization may have top-notch psychologists and HR expertise in the area of assessments. This is a tremendous thing because they will be able to lead the implementation of our process internally and will easily apply our tools to your needs and situation. We’ll give them access to all the technical data they need to help evaluate an implementation decision and partner with them for a successful program.

If you don't have expert assessment expertise on-staff we'll make it as simple as driving a car. You'll have all of the information you need written in business language.

9. Do your assessments help HR or management?

Both.  One of our differentiators from our competition is that we don’t believe in “doing job tests”. We believe in a process of “taking stock” of existing Human Capital, understanding the culture, organization and every position of the workforce, ensuring measurable indicators of success are in place and hiring and redeploying where necessary to improve productivity, team function and profitability.

HR remains the “people experts” on the strategic level. We give them tools to help them with that task such as business case/ROI analysis, and tools to help strategic and workforce planning.

On the “tactical” level our reports go far beyond selection/hiring. They can help managers understand and coach their teams, handle employee conflict and increase productivity. In other words our process provides management with the “people information” and insight they need to align their section and execute the organization’s goals.

10. How quickly can we implement?

Hypothetically?  Immediately.  Though we recommend a discovery process and a diagnostic study so that we can learn more about each other, establish clear goals of success and provide a custom recommendation. Assuming we have access to the people and data we need, we can implement very quickly.

11.How quickly will we see results?

That depends on your existing performance data collection. Firstly, what type of results? Annual sales production is obviously going to be 12 months down the road. That said, let’s say you have already been keeping performance metrics on a position (salesperson, widget bender, etc) and you have determined that at 30 days a good employee does x and a great employee does y. We can use your historical data to generate a process that should see results in 30 days.

12. I have an existing assessment process, how is OrgCommit going to do any better?

Take our challenge!!!!! We’ll run a diagnostic study and compare what you use to our own process. If we don’t provide more business relevant information you don’t pay a thing.

Worst case: you get your current system looked at by an outside expert and your current decision validated and business case justified for free.

Best case: you look like a hero, save a lot of money, make your organization more productive and profitable. You can’t lose either way and we both have much to gain with success.

13. How do we get started?

The best way to get started is to join us for an introductory phone meeting by clicking here We'll keep our first chat brief, introduce one another and learn where your major talent management focus is. Following that we'll present to you our idea for a risk-free diagnostic study which will give us an opportunity to show you how we can help and give you the opportunity to get to know us a little better before you make any commitments. Does that sound like a win-win? Click Here to set up a common time.

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An Executive Guide to Assessments


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