Assessment Development

Assessment Development Process:

The objective of our employment assessments is the prediction of an applicant's performance on the job.  To accomplish this objective we begin with a comprehensive survey of what distinguishes good performers on the job.  Our best source of information regarding these critical work behaviors is the workers and supervisors who perform, observe and are accountable for the work we will test applicants for.

Using peer nomination and management judgments we select the best, most experienced workers and supervisors to document their observations and experiences with good and poor work behavior.  These behaviors of interest are collectively (but independently) analyzed by these expert workers and supervisors (usually 10 or more) to reach an objective consensus regarding the content domain of the employment test.  This analysis is biased to favor critical work behaviors which are most usefully measured in the applicant population (i.e. work values and habits which distinguish superior workers, are poorly developed in barely acceptable workers and cause trouble when workers are weak in the behavior).

Our assessments predict job performance by measuring in applicants the same behaviors which cause workers to differ in job performance. The methods we employ in the construction of our assessments are designed to ensure we measure these critical behaviors and remove error in the final test scores of applicants.  This careful and comprehensive focus on all critical elements of the work enhances the power of our instrument to resolve who is best qualified.

Our instrument consists of three methods of measuring applicants against this behavioral standard and determining who has the right mix of work sense, values, and habits to excel at the job:  work interest and willingness compatibility, self-description, and work related judgment.  Each method has strengths and weaknesses resolving the spectrum of work behaviors comprising the total job.  Together they provide a practical, robust sampling of the work behaviors which define superior performers on the job.

Work Interest and Willingness Compatibility
This part of the instrument empowers each applicant with clear, detailed information regarding the values, culture and expectations of the work.  Many performance, morale and turnover problems result from a mismatch of worker values to the expectation created by the work and its culture.  By allowing each applicant the opportunity to assess themselves against these work values we deflect many of these problems in the employment process.  Further, by profiling applicant attitudes (interest, willingness, desire) towards these work values against superior performers, the applicant's fit with the work culture is predicted and factored into the equation of who is best qualified.

Self-Description
Applicants can provide valuable information regarding the critical work behaviors which will predict their performance on the job.  We use a simple forced-choice format which allows each applicant to describe themselves with critical work behaviors.  Here, the applicant is forced to choose between two apparently critical work behaviors the one behavior that best describes them.


This method of sampling critical work behaviors allows for the inclusion of work habits, attitudes and character that affect the day-to-day performance of every worker.  Applicants can and will give you this critical information.  The key is how you ask!

Work Related Judgments
All jobs involve situations which the worker can affect either positively or negatively, depending on how they respond.  By placing applicants in these critical situations and measuring the effect of their work judgment on the job, prediction of performance on the job is achieved.  Their choice of action is measured against the consensual judgment of our panel of experts.  Here, applicant knowledge, skill and/or ability are measured in the context of the work and factored into the equation of who is best qualified.

Legal Standings
Each part of the assessment is thoroughly documented as a content valid employment test in conformance with the Federal Government's Uniform Guidelines on Employee Selection Procedures (1978).  Used together in our assessment they constitute an "alternative selection procedure" as defined by these Guidelines and mandated by the U.S. Supreme Court (Albemarle vs. Moody, 1976).  Our methodical attention to the behavioral details that predict job performance produces a level playing field on which diversity goals have and will be achieved fairly according to the law (Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, as amended).

The U.S. Supreme court in deciding the landmark Griggs vs. Duke Power Company case (1971) made clear the requirement that employee selection practices must be related to performance on the job in question.  According to the court, "The touchstone is business necessity."  A business necessity exists in a selection standard if it improves the employer's ability to deliver its products or services by increasing the efficiency and effectiveness of its workers.  If a selection procedure can be shown to improve the job performance of selected workers it is a legal "test" within the meaning of the Civil Rights Act of 1964.  In concluding the Griggs case, the Justices made the following comment on their interpretation of Congressional intent:

“Nothing in the Act precludes the use of testing or measuring procedures; obviously they are useful.  What Congress has forbidden is giving these devices and mechanisms controlling force unless they are demonstrably a reasonable measure of job performance.  Congress has not commanded that the less qualified be preferred over the more qualified simply because of minority origins.  Far from disparaging job qualifications as such, Congress has made such qualifications the controlling factor, so that race, religion, nationality, and sex become irrelevant.  What Congress has commanded is that any tests used must measure the person for the job and not in the abstract.” 
(Griggs vs. Duke Power Company, 1971)

Utility to Customer
Pre-knowledge of an applicant's likely level of success at a job has obvious value - even if you hire everyone who applies.  However, by being selective and restricting hiring decisions to high performing applicants, customers have the power to dramatically improve their workforce productivity and effectiveness.  Our careful attention to the validity of our instrument ensures meaningful increases in the performance of workers as the employer becomes more selective in whom they hire.