How to Assess Your Employees Competencies & Skills: 5 Effective Ways
Have you ever tried to assess employee competency levels? Some organizations do not do much competency evaluation beyond the interview that staff members do to get enlisted as a part of the company. Remember that the businesses must always respond to changing needs in the industry environment, which means what may have been effective yesterday is not necessarily going to be effective next week.
If you find that there are gaps after a competency assessment test, it does not mean that it is time to send home persons who lack the required skills and replace them with new ones. It is way more effective to invest in people who already know how your organization operates instead of getting all new people to fill the spaces.
The onus is on managers and the HR team to effectively evaluate staff members and decide how to proceed. Of course, the team conducting the said assessment must be familiar with how to measure competency levels before taking on the task.
Upon getting the results, the objective should be to create a personal development plan to help employees become the best versions of themselves while meeting the needs of the business. Doing this creates greater engagement and job satisfaction, which is going to have a positive effect on employee retention.
Paying people and ensuring that they have an ergonomic standing desk and an office ergonomic chair to work with isn't enough. While your bulk for office furniture order is appreciated, you must invest in the personal aspect of employees to get them to feel inspired to do their best.
An employee competency evaluation can include a technical competency assessment, an interpersonal competency assessment, and even a conceptual competency assessment. What you choose should depend on the strategic goals of the business and whatever KPIs have been established.
Now it is time to look at some of the ideas you can implement when you want to effectively assess employee competency levels.
Create Realistic Scenarios to Observe Reactional Behavior
There is a reason why modeling is such an effective teaching technique to assess employee competency. Aspiring pilots can use flight simulators, aspiring sailors can use ship simulators, and even scientists use models to prove theories before attempting to apply them in the real world. What is the lesson here? A mockup of the real context can help people to become familiar with what it is they are expected to do when the time comes.
However, it can also be an effective productivity tool for employers to help the management team assess how employees would behave in constructed scenarios. It teaches you how well people can handle natural occurrences, such as failure, making an incorrect risky call, etc.
It is much easier to test proficiency and make corrections in a simulated situation than to have someone mess up and cause an unbelievable catastrophe.
Take Advantage of Gamification
Gamification has become a huge trend, thanks in large part to the popularity of the gaming industry. While it used to only include people who play traditional video games, there is now a wider audience for it. Much of this is because of the mobile gaming industry, and the way it has taken off, even with people who are traditionally not into video games.
The advantage that this presents is to get the chance to create entertainment and fun while teaching lessons and learning yourself. Games can be created for adults, and depending on the way you set things up, the same games can serve your corporate needs better than you ever thought possible.
Get Team Feedback
How can employees factor into the assessment that you want to do? Well, you can take advantage of effective employee feedback, which is going to help you collect quite a bit of information. Clearly, if you are evaluating John's competency level, you cannot ask John to do the assessment. However, you could get assistance from John with Brittany’s assessment.
Peer reviewing is a technique that schools and workplaces use to help assess employee competency levels. The idea is to have each person on a team rated by every other member of the team in defined areas. Of course, each employee that is doing a rating does so in a confidential setting.
Do not get too personal with the feedback that you are requesting, as the idea is to find out how competent someone is based on the job requirements and job description. You can then combine the results of this exercise with whatever information you would have collected from other methods to come up with your final decision.
Get Client Feedback
The way you turn over a profit is by pleasing your clients and incentivizing them to spend through a solid product offering. Based on the good working relationship between client and product/service provider, there is almost no better place to get feedback without internal factors getting into the way.
You would know the kind of interactions that your employees are having with your customers, which means that you can trace customer comments back to specific employees. The idea would be to communicate with your clients to learn how they felt about the service, what their needs are, and the extent to which they feel that the business is meeting the said needs. Then, you can assess employee competency.
Assuming your staff members have the required skills to handle their assigned job, your customers are theoretically supposed to feel pleased, and they should feel like there is not much room for improvement, even if there is.
It is important to mention that you should not take isolated feedback as the absolute truth. In other words, if 900 clients have given glowing reviews to an employee, do not throw that all away and form your impression based on the one client that left a negative review. Trend analysis would be your best bet if you are going to implement client feedback.
As stated before, you would not have an employee conduct a self-assessment and use it as the entire base of the competency assessment test. However, there is a lot to gain from having employees perform self-assessments and it is one of the best ways to assess employee competency. Your aim here is not to get staff members to underestimate or overestimate themselves.
You want to encourage them to express exactly where they think they are. Using the other methods, you can ascertain what the reality is. Based on the impression and the reality, you can plan effectively to align the two with what the necessity is from the business perspective.
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