Want Productive Employees? First Start With Job Assessments
Job Assessments Help Ensure Proper Job Fit, Which Leads to Successful Employees
Capability refers to the skills, tools, and experience that a person needs in order to successfully perform her job. When any of these factors are missing, there is an increased chance that the employee will underperform. It isn't uncommon for hiring professionals to overlook these basic factors, especially if a candidate has solid academic credentials and comes across as intelligent and confident in a job interview. Furthermore, it's no secret that most candidates exaggerate their abilities on their résumés and job applications.
At a time when every hire counts, companies can’t afford wasted time or effort to hire mediocre or substandard employees. Making a small investment in job assessments up front helps guarantee solid job fit, which leads to successful, productive hires.
Diagnostics help you identify if an underperforming employee has adequate capabilities
Do you know what skills are needed to perform the job? Do you know whether the employee possesses those skills? If she doesn't possess the necessary skills, how will you help her acquire them, and how long do you expect that process to take? Skills training takes time and money, and results are never guaranteed unless there is adequate commitment from both the manager and the employee. It's in everyone's best interest for the manager to set appropriate expectations for the employee from the beginning. This is especially true if the job requires special technical capabilities.
Even if an individual has the skills and experience to do the job, does he have the tools to deliver peak performance? For example, a highly skilled and experienced web designer can't build a website without adequate computer hardware and software. The tools don't have to be the most up-to-date, but a system that crashes frequently can be incredibly frustrating and unproductive, even to the best performer.
Just because an employee has the skills to do a job doesn't mean that he has the experience to apply those skills in his specific position. This is especially true for recent graduates, outside hires from different industries, and internal hires from different departments. While the required skills may be similar from one job to the next, differing applications and terminology may require that the new hire take time to learn the nuances of his new position.
Administering pre-hire job assessments helps you to measure what matters most to succeed in a particular role and ensure that the candidates you’re considering are a match. Relying solely on a resume and interview can get you close, but job assessments help to close the gap and uncover factors that could undermine the candidate’s success.
"Fit" reflects the behaviors and interests needed to succeed in a job. Many people fall into the trap of choosing a profession or job that is a bad fit. Rather than trying to understand ourselves so that we can choose a calling that builds on our strengths and aligns with our interests, we choose jobs because of peer pressure and societal influences.
You probably know a medical doctor who trained at a prestigious school and worked for several years at a modern hospital. Despite adequate skills, tools, and experience, he is aloof, insensitive, has a terrible bedside manner, and you only see him if no one else is available. He might have been better suited as a lawyer so that he could cross-examine a witness on trial. In short, he really doesn't possess the innate compassion that would make him a great doctor. He is a poor fit for his job.
Skills can be taught, but behaviors are much more difficult to change. A doctor can improve his bedside manner through training and mentoring, but it takes tremendous effort and motivation to change natural behavior. If an individual isn't motivated to change, then he probably won't.
It is important to understand a person's innate behaviors and interests when trying to match him with the right job. Know the job, know what type of person is successful in that job, and then hire others who have the behavioral traits that fit that job. This is easier said than done because it is difficult to gauge behaviors in a job interview, but behavioral job assessments can be extremely helpful.
Clear goals help focus and motivate employees to achieve the desired results
Employees need to be very clear about their responsibilities and about the results you expect them to achieve. Daily work and priorities are easily affected by the crisis of the day, new requests, or changes in direction. Setting and tracking smart goals helps your employees focus on what is most important to your business, and clear accountabilities help ensure that the work gets done with minimal conflict.
Want to learn more about the benefits of using job assessments? Read more about pre-screening prospective employees.
Edited by: Jeff Meyers