Conducting a skills assessment


6 tips for conducting a successful skills assessment for your company

What skills do your employees actually use on a daily basis? What skills are they missing and what are their strengths? In this article, I'll share 6 tips on how to conduct a successful skills assessment that can benefit both the learners in your company and your organization.

6 tips for conducting a successful skills assessment for your business

How to conduct a skills assessment for your company: 6 points to consider
Skills are the most important assets your employees possess. Well-honed skills give them the ability to master tasks and improve their job performance. That's why skills assessments are an essential part of a successful e-learning program. They allow organizations to fine-tune their e-learning initiatives, increase productivity and reduce performance gaps by identifying the core competencies your corporate audience needs to fulfill their job responsibilities.

Test both technical and non-technical skills.

It is essential to test both technical and soft skills when conducting skills assessments. This is because both types of skills are needed in the workplace. For example, a corporate learner may know a lot about the equipment they are repairing, but may not be able to communicate effectively with customers to solve common problems. A technical skill is usually a skill that is closely related to a specific field or occupation. A soft skill, on the other hand, is a skill that helps them relate to others, communicate, and collaborate. Simulations are one of the most effective tools for testing both types of skills, as they allow them to interact with a virtual environment, as well as with characters that can test their understanding of body language, emotions and behaviors.

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Focus on job-specific skills.

Rather than testing generic skills that every employee should know, try to focus on job-specific skill assessments based on job responsibilities and daily tasks. Essentially, you want to focus on the skills that really matter and are directly related to their job performance. You can find out which skills really matter by observing them in the workplace, talking to their supervisors, and conducting surveys.

Find the ideal test method.

Once you have identified the competencies to be assessed, you need to determine how you can effectively assess these core competencies. While some skills can be assessed through written exams, others may require a more creative approach. Online scenarios and serious games can be used to test skills that may not have a valid scoring rubric. For example, customer service or problem-solving skills can be assessed by asking employees to choose paths and make decisions. Their choices will result in positive or negative consequences, which will indicate whether or not they should work on specific skill sets. This is another reason why audience research is so important, as it allows you to learn as much as possible about your employees' preferences. If they want mobile-friendly assessments, for example, you can develop responsive tests that automatically adapt to screen size.

Personalize each skills assessment.

The skills assessments should not have a "one size fits all" approach. In fact, each employee should receive a personalized assessment based on their needs, preferences and position in the company. At a minimum, each department in your organization should have its own skills assessments. This gives you the opportunity to test skills that are related to employees' job performance, rather than assessing skill sets that may not be relevant. A salesperson does not need to know how to fix a computer, for example, just as a computer technician does not need to know how to negotiate with a customer. Personalizing skills assessments also improves the value of your online training program, as employees will be able to relate to the topic and understand why the assessment is necessary. Otherwise, they may question whether the assessment will actually help them improve their job performance and achieve their goals. As a result, they will be less likely to actively participate and perform at their best during the skills assessment process.

Offer your employees resources for testing.

Instead of asking your employees to take an unannounced skills assessment, give them the opportunity to develop their skills by offering online assessment resources in the workplace. For example, a task-focused tutorial or simulations featuring characters and challenges they must overcome. Also, during the skills assessment, you should give them access to the same equipment, tools or references they would have in the real world. For example, if your employees are normally able to look up information in a job manual, allow them to use that manual during the skills assessment test. Remember, the main purpose of a skills assessment is to test their skills and talents in the real world. Thus, the skills assessment should mimic real-world environments and challenges.

Self-assessments can be a valuable tool.

Create a series of self-assessments that your company's learners can use to test their own skills as they progress through their online training. You can even compile a list of resources, such as articles, e-learning videos, and websites, and break them down by skill category. Your company's learners can then use these online resources to study for their self-assessment or to brush up on the skills they need to develop. The key is not to make these self-assessments mandatory, as corporate learners will be more motivated to learn if they are intrinsically motivated. That said, you should offer additional support resources if they feel they need it, such as forums, mentoring, or online training courses that will help them develop the necessary skills.
Competency assessments offer your organization the opportunity to customize your e-learning strategy to meet the evolving needs of employees. Use these tips to conduct a skills assessment in Poitiers or Tours and develop your next online course.

A skills assessment coupled with a task analysis can help you customize every aspect of your online training experiences. Read the article 6 Tips for Conducting a Successful Task Analysis for Corporate eLearning to learn how to conduct an effective task analysis for your next corporate eLearning course.

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