Wednesday 11 January 2012

Types of Assessment Tools: Performance-based or On-the-job?

On-the-job observation is a form of performance evaluation where a candidate’s on-the-job performance is observed and evaluated by an independent trained assessor. The candidate can be aware of being observed and evaluated by an assessor or observation can occur incognito (i.e., without the candidate’s awareness). This method of assessment is best suited for initial certification or used in combination with other tools, depending on extent of observation performed. According to Knapp’s Certification Industry Scan (2007) performance-based assessments, including work simulation, account for 17% of certification assessments. The following table outlines the advantages and disadvantages of the observation-based methods.

Provides a direct assessment of individual’s skills, allowing to collect candidate performance information not otherwise available
High face validity and acceptance by candidates
Easy to develop

Not suitable for assessing skills which are not directly observable
Need detailed scoring key
Need to recruit and train independent, third party assessors
Presence of an assessor typically changes the behaviour of a candidate
Can be time consuming
Can be expensive to administer (e.g., high volume of candidate, remote location)

This post is based on content from 'Assessment Tools Certification' by Human Resource Systems Group, Ltd.

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