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Talent Assessment | 8 Min Read

Skills Assessment Test: Fool-Proof Tips on Acing It

Everything is a step-by-step process – so is with hiring, selection, and promotion. It’s all about the baby steps that keep you traversing towards your target goals. It is therefore crucial towards achieving success in the brand’s pursuit of excellence in the industry. Once you get to claim your first hefty slice of success – you will be pining for more; which is a good sign.

What Is a Skill Assessment Test?

During the hiring or recruitment, most employers would require candidates to take skills assessment tests to evaluate the aptitude or skills or an individual and determine whether he or she is a good match for the role. They make the formal job offer after the interviews and skills assessment helps them in making an informed decision in the end.

These tests may be in the form of a general type of evaluation that helps to gauge and evaluate an individual’s personality type as well as skills and expertise level, which paint you a clearer picture of whether the candidate fits the position or would thrive in the company culture.

The entire recruitment and selection process can be nerve-wracking and stressful, but you can turn Skills Assessment tests into an opportunity to stand out from the competition. This method can prove to be your perfect ally when approached with the right mindset.

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How It Differs from Other Assessment Methods?

Employers conduct job skills assessments to make the right hiring decisions. Some of the most common methods of assessing candidates’ or existing employees’ skills are 

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There’s no match for high-precision skill assessment tests. These tests are a standardized, scientific, and formal medium for identifying high-potential employees and deserving candidates. Intrinsically, skill assessment tests are required to ensure the authenticity in scores, rating, grading, and overall description. Hence, these tests are prepared to comprehensively evaluate the assessee’s skills and abilities.

When it comes to additional benefits, skills assessment test has the edge over other assessment methods. For example, when evaluating through oldfangled ways of skill test, you cannot vouch for the candidate’s genuineness because the facts presented in their resumes,  job interviews, and reference checks can be misrepresented.

Such misleading results create a quandary for recruiters because chances are the candidates and existing employers might portray themselves in the best light to grab an opportunity.

However, when done right, structured interviews can serve the purpose with the utmost ease. Seasoned interviewers have got the knack of finding if the interviewee is a liar (mostly by observing his/her body language). Besides, job simulations are also useful in predicting job performance.

Despite the usability and importance of the two aforementioned methods, skill assessment tests turn out to be far more efficient and cost-effective when compared with these common methods.

Why Is a Skill Assessment Test Important?

In the last few years, there has been a steady rise in the percentage of users who use skill tests for attracting and retaining talent. While many leading companies rely heavily on pre-employment assessments, there is an enormous untapped potential that has yet to be explored in its adoption. 

The scientific and technological advancement of assessment tools has paved the way to expand the reach of these tools, making it more affordable and convenient for employers. Not only do these tools ensure a remarkable candidate experience, but they also give candidates access to skill assessment tests in the comfort of their homes, at whatever time suits them.

Besides being the most suitable method for assessment, these skill tests have many additional uses as given below: 

  • To attract the right talent,
  • To assess existing employees for various other roles, 
  • To identify high potential leaders,
  • To benchmark talent performance within an organization, 
  • To identify assessee’s strengths and gaps,
  • To help create long term values for employees.

Skill assessment tests provide deep insights about hard skills and several other key competencies of both job applicants and current employees to accomplish organizational objectives. Skill tests can significantly help employers recruit quality hires and improve existing employees’ performance through well-informed and data-driven decisions.

How to Select the Right Skill Assessment Test?

The extensive library of online skill assessment tests allows employers to evaluate job candidates and existing employees on various criteria. It provides a plethora of assessments available across core corporate functions, industry-specific roles, and generic tests such as behavioral and cognitive, among others. In the HR industry, managers often grapple with the most common question: “Which test should I choose?’’ It all depends on the business requirements, the specific job position you must fill, and the necessary skill sets required for that role.

For example, are you thinking of hiring a candidate with strong communication, problem-solving, programming, or leadership skills? Your selection of assessment tests depends on what relevant skills you are looking for in your new employee.

What Do Employers Look for in Self Assessment Tests?

The art of successfully getting the best people on board is not as difficult as many recruiters think. Finding the best hire is a strategic process that requires clarity on every employer’s part. The ever-increasing talent pool and the advent of pre-employment tests have made the selection relatively simple. So, your main goal in hiring new people shouldn’t simply be about increasing headcounts – it should be about recruiting and retaining the best quality employees. 

Mettl’s online assessment battery makes it fairly easy to cut through the clutter and shortlist the best candidates with the utmost ease. The hiring process demands complete transparency and there’s nothing better than assessing a candidate based on the skills listed on their resumes.

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A Comprehensive Platform

If you have less time at your disposal while reviewing candidates, then you’ll want a platform that is easy to use and gives ready access to exams, candidates, and results. That’s where self-manageable software will come in handy to track an individual’s progress over time.

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Ease of Administering a Test

Test administrators have options galore to create an online tests and select questions. For instance, Mettl’s extensive library of SME verified assessments is immensely helpful in designing a set of questions. These tests are readily customizable in accordance with the administrator’s parameters for test configuration, test duration, question order, and scoring logic, among others.

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Invite Candidates Conveniently

Administrators send invitations to the candidates who accept the test invite to begin their assessment. There is complete freedom of setting up invitations for specific dates, times, and IP addresses.

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Online Remote Proctoring

It’s not easy to get away with cheating on the skills assessment. Conducting large scale exams is no more hassle, all thanks to AI-powered remote proctoring that closely monitors any suspicious activity and prevents the impersonation of candidates. In a secure virtual environment, candidates cannot access external apps and several tabs on their browsers. Proctors have complete power over the assessment process, which helps them accurately gauge the skillsets of your candidates.

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Infallible Testing Process

At this stage of the self-assessment test, there is no margin for error. Candidates need to be verified via their Government ID cards and webcam. Simultaneously, proctors carefully check candidate surroundings and run a scan on the assessee’s computers before the test starts. Once it begins, proctors can easily access candidates’ video feeds and computer screens. They can capture screenshots, end a test session, or reconfirm candidates using image captures. Proctors can broadcast messages and communicate with one or multiple candidates at once.

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Automated Report Generation

When the test is over, employers can heave a sigh of relief knowing that reports will be automatically generated for their perusal along with important data such as screen captures, live recordings, and chat logs. Furthermore, reports are customizable to provide accurate, actionable data. And what’s more, you can add more milestones and progress events to the timeline. For each event, you can assign a beautiful icon and a date tag that makes your report more visual.

From a candidate’s perspective, skills assessment test can be toilsome if they haven’t prepared well in advance. Candidate experience matters because interviews undoubtedly conjure up anxiety-inducing moments, which brings us to the question: How job applicants can prepare for skills assessment tests?

Have you been called in for an interview and asked to take an assessment test? It may send shivers down the spine when you least expected it, but there’s no need to be intimidated! Whether you are taking psychometric, coding, or aptitude test, there are various ways to go about it. So how should you prepare beforehand?

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Gear Up for the Skills Assessment Test

Skills Assessment tests should not intimidate or scare you. You can prepare for this battery of trials to achieve a positive mindset before and during the evaluation. You may ask or inquire about the types of assessment tests that would be done and the approximate duration of the testing procedure. This should give you the advantage or a slight idea of what to expect. You can also practice personality tests online like the Myers-Briggs Personality Test. 

Doing so would help you prepare and gain hindsight as to what you are capable of or in the context of your personal and professional abilities. If you are tested in a particular skill, then you must review the concepts and try to practice quizzes that you can take online. If you can, just inquire about how much the Skills Assessment test results would affect the hiring process or decision. Be careful though not to appear nervous or incompetent when asking about these details. Project confidence and give them the impression that you are interested in and committed to becoming a part of the company. This step will help boost your chances too of being considered for the role.

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Give the Assessment Your Best Shot

When taking the Skills Assessment test or any tests for employment or promotion, please make sure that you provide accurate, honest, and consistent answers. Personality tests may have no right or wrong answers because everything is considered in the grey area, but consistencies can be detected in your responses if ever you try to cheat the system at all. You would often observe some questions repeated yet plotted in different contexts to reveal if the answers are sincere and unswerving. Also, the most common mistake noticed in Skills Assessment tests is when people fail to follow the instructions correctly. 

You must make it a point to read the questions and instructions and clarify when necessary. Do not make guesses with these assessment tests – take your time to comprehend questions before making responses accurately. Don’t allow your nerves to take control or get the best of you. When it comes to skills assessment tests, you must always consider and align your responses with the company’s corporate culture.

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Wait for the Skills Assessment Result with Confidence

After you are done with the tests, take the time to talk to the recruitment manager and the employer to demonstrate your commitment to the role. You can also ask them for feedback on the results. Express gratitude regardless of the negative or positive criticism given to you.

Many companies cultivate the culture of having a healthy competition which fosters positive reinforcement and motivation to excel for the benefit of the entire organization. The use of these Skills Assessment tests does not only help evaluate a person’s suitability and competency for the job but also determine whether one has the drive and hunger to succeed and thrive in a robust organization. 

In addition to these tests provided by Mercer | Mettl, which is an online assessment platform for many companies globally, employers also depend on interviews and background or references check for choosing the right people for specific roles in the organization. It goes without saying that the top senior executives of the leading companies are also being asked to take skills assessment tests periodically to get to know individual progress and also serve as a guide for coaching, enrichment, and training sessions.

In general, the use of these tests is to determine where one lacks in skills and should improve upon. This way, companies get precise data on the skills that should be developed to increase productivity. These skills tests have internal validity scales, which can quickly detect any misrepresentation. This does not just measures how fit you are for the job but also weighs how you would fare and measure up to the expectations of the company in the long run.

This evaluation further aims to assess how your skills and personality would fit the role and if you are going to be productive and happy with the job for the long term. Skills assessment tests need readiness mentally, physically, and psychologically – you need to be ready and psyched up to do the assessment tests at the appropriate time, so as to ace the assessment with flying colors.

How Mercer | Mettl Can Help?

Skills assessment tests provided by Mercer | Mettl allows companies and professionals to make well-calculated decisions of recruitment, training, and promotion of job candidates and employees. The extensive library of tests and simulators can help you create your customized assessments to evaluate the underlying abilities and current skills of the shortlisted candidate. Explore a wide range of psychometric, cognitive, role-centric, and technical assessments to get the right people on board.

You may also want to read: Technologies That You Must Prefer In Skills Assessment Test

Originally published May 1 2018, Updated June 16 2020

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Written by

Abhilash works with the Content Marketing team of Mercer|Mettl. He has been contributing his bit to the world of online business for some years now. Abhilash is experienced in content marketing, along with SEO. He’s fond of writing useful posts, helping people, traveling, and savoring delicacies.

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