#FIRMday 15 May 2014 ISV Software 'Using Testing to Identify Top Talent'


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Amanda Davies of ISV Group will talk to us about ‘Using Testing to Identify Top Talent’. How do you find the ideal people to fit both your job spec and your culture? You need to pinpoint quickly who the more competent individuals are. But what are the biggest pitfalls to avoid?

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  • David Moyes - proven successful management background, Experienced at all levels, Well travelled, 2 children, Religious
    Nick Leeson - Established financial background, track record of promotion through career, Home counties born, Married, no children, ambitious
  • Regardless of job role – skills underpinning them remain the same. Literacy whether it was a secretary or Exec asst or social media mediator. Some notable exceptions with IT testing and new skill set and development programs coming on board. Different coding languages now than 10 years ago (5 even). Looking at ISV’s system, far and away the most popular at the MS Office suite – used in most back offices and the basic skills.
    Big move to cloud based, instant access for candidates or colleagues, instant access to pull down results and reports for you. Doesn’t have to be in office/ branch.
    Not too long again there was a sense that a lot of this new tech saved time and contact for careers team and recruiters. Brilliant. And yes it does but didn’t the candidate have a crappy experience. Are you guilty of sending that email that says, thanks but no thanks you didn’t make the grade and oh, we get so many applications we won’t respond to you individually. Remember glassdoor
    Increasingly we’re seeing assessments as part of a thorough joined up recruitment process. You have so many tools at your disposal. Intuition, interview, role play or group exercises, competency based exercises.
    More companies are embedding links to assessments as part of the application process. They’re bespoke and tailored to talk about the product, service or company name – helping the candidate build a picture of what it’s like to work with you. At this point they choose to continue or self select out.
    Assessments help take the blinkers off. Candidate heavy market place and experience isn’t the be all and end all (why are they leaving) – if the individual has the core skills, value, behaviours, traits that you’re looking for – they’re transferable.
    Plus assessments as long as you’re using a reputable supplier are purposely designed to be non judgemental. Fair and valid regardless of gender, culture, age etc. Takes the blinkers off -
  • So a case study of who’s doing it right and some wider top tips
    Hastings Direct – pretty recognisable insurance company, employing around 1200 people. They already used an assessment platform before engaging with us at ISV. Working together because of 2 key drivers, the system they were using before was clunky, straightforward, required much intervention. Now, they are using competency based online tests as part of the rect process but further to this. Using the platform to create tailored assessments – used post induction and post training to evidence that the messages have been retained, confirming the learning. Particularly relevant because of course they are FSA regulated but a great example of where the competency based assessments are making a difference and a joined up approach between L&D.
  • On the flip side we are working with a company where they’re finding assessments just aren’t working for them. I won’t name names – it’s not fair but it is ok to share the learning.
    This company, big employing thousands of people and in the city they’re in, arguable a destination and recognisable employer.
    The red light for them was that people just aren’t completing the assessments and to be honest, we don’t mind if they don’t – we don’t have the numbers applying.
    What they were doing through their careers page was asking candidates to complete 4 separate assessments. Granted these are only around 5 minutes each but candidate is seeing 4 tests and feeling disheartened already (generally for contact centre roles).
    The recruitment team are printing out the results and passing them on the team leaders. No interpretion and ‘not even sure if they look at them’. You can imagine, my reaction. This also includes a personality q’aire for call handlers. Great give them feedback when you’re not trained!
    Clearly process and attraction issues.
    What works for you and them may not work for another.
  • So with behaviour and personality q’aire in mind. What about behaviour and personality assessments. What’s the feeling in the room about these?
    All had a horrible experience, mine was with MBTI.
    We work closely with Cut-e and Thomas and recently, as a talent development tool we have used Thomas’s EIQ.
    Taking a risk here and baring my soul, was only going to show you a snippet or use someone else’s but here goes.
    For me and the team we’re looking at this as both an awareness tool and how to expand your range.
    Working closely with a team member. Pick out Emotion Mgt (flatline, controlled), impulse control (risk paralysis by analysis, I like a bit of data blends brilliantly with co-worker is more excitable, ooh that’s shiny – at first irked each other but no realise why and influencing each other in a good way).
  • Enough about that, back to you.
    Some recapping and top tips
    Travel your candidate journey – how’s the human element and feedback,
    Set your own benchmarks – for your business and for that role. What’s good for one position, less so for another.
    We’ve seen how much we have preconceptions, intuitions or judgements about people – get the measure of candidates with exercises and assessments
    Can you blend your recruitment and L&D tech? Some great systems out there that truly work together.
    Don’t rely on one tool alone you’ve got so many at your disposal
  • Missed opp not to name drop – here are some of the in house and external recruitment businesses that use our skills based testing and training platform.
  • Over to you, what are your experiences with assessments for talent.
    We are constantly developing our product, tell us what one thing would you like to see?
  • #FIRMday 15 May 2014 ISV Software 'Using Testing to Identify Top Talent'

    1. 1. Using Testing To Identify Top Talent Amanda Davies at The FIRM May 2014
    2. 2. Using Testing to Identify Top Talent • Today • Assumptions v Intuition v Judgment • What’s going on with assessments • Case Studies • What to do and what to avoid • Discussion
    3. 3. Would you hire them? • Academic/ teacher • Science background • Home owner • Married 2 children • Reserved demeanour
    4. 4. Would you hire them?
    5. 5. What assumptions do we make? • GROUP EXERCISE • Stuff: Car, Pets, Education, Partner, Hobbies, likes/ dislikes • Character: Loud/ quiet, detail orientated, strategist, trustworthy, chatterbox, sense of humour, calm, emotionally visible, diva • Skills: literate, sciences, whiz with Excel, spelling, typing speed • Projection: You remind me of ______so I think that _______ Your experience is in ________so I assume that ___________ • Future: I see you going _________
    6. 6. What’s Changing in Testing • Popular assessments unchanged • Cloud based, instant access • Human contact replacement? • Part of a joined up process • Pre-screen and self-select out • Wider thinking • Integration with ATS and careers page
    7. 7. Case Study (what to do)
    8. 8. Case Study (what not to do) • Online application • 4 x tests at application stage • Completion optional • Assessments printed and given to Team Leader • No benchmarks • Attraction issue
    9. 9. Case Study (what to do)
    10. 10. Top Tips & Things to Avoid • Travel your candidate journey • With assessments explore the best delivery platform for your business • Set your own benchmarks • Use assessments to avoid assuming • Look at recruitment tech integration • Do not rely on one tool alone • Avoid using assessments as a replacement for human contact • Do set relevant exercises but don’t overload applicants • Use behavioural profiling as a development tool
    11. 11. The company we keep
    12. 12. Discussion @AmandaJDavies01 or @ISVSoftwareLtd adavies@isvgroup.com