Pros and Cons of Online Assessment Technology

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In today’s VUCA world, to deliver a great customer experience you need to be a digitally Savvy organization. A digital readiness report of organisations brought out by a Bengaluru-based learning and assessment solutions company, KNOLSKAPE, found that majority of organisations in India believe that their mission, vision and strategy are aligned with the digital world. As per the report, most of the organisations have included digital readiness in their strategy and execution roadmap in the last one or two years. The report also observed that even companies in traditional industries are augmenting their product strategies by leveraging digitally enabled experiences for better consumer satisfaction. Interestingly, the report says that there is, however, a gap between digital intent and execution by companies and only 40 per cent of the organisations agree to having all the necessary digital infrastructure (like applications, tools etc).

“When it comes to digital adoption, there isn’t a one size fits all approach for all industries”. Since there is a war for talent and today’s talent is Millennials who are digital natives, HR function is also adopting the Digital strategy to attract and retain digitally savvy talent.

The human resources department today have digital goals with key digital competencies needed for making the digital strategy a success.  The HR function is looking at digital tools for talent planning, talent acquisition, talent engagement, learning & development.

To truly embrace digital age technologies, there has to be a shift of the paradigm which empowers candidates/ learning. Any Digital Technology comes with platform, process, and product features.

While organizations are making consideration how they can incorporate the elements of a digital age assessment the focus has to be on:

  • Choosing the platform that helps them solve their current problem and helps you meet the key objective.
  • Platform that helps in process optimization.
  • Ability to customize the product to match the key focus area and competency.
  • Content/Artifacts must be Competency/Standards Based.

A Digital Workplace “makes it possible to unlock and connect people, business information across locations”. In order to a digital workplace organizations need to focus on digital tools that will help organizations in the below 3 areas:

  • Collaboration: how to connect, collaborate, and deliver better products or services with teams spread across different geographies or locations
  • Engage: how to attract, engage, and retain your employees
  • Innovate: how to adapt, compete, and win through rapid and open innovation

To become a Digital savvy organization HR functions needs to work towards building leadership capabilities. Successful digital transformation – both inside and outside the organization – starts with digital leadership. Yet many leaders are struggling to understand how to evolve their leadership capabilities in the digital world of work and truly to understand the potential value of organizational transformation.

To address this, leaders need to understand how to lead in the digital workplace. This involves developing the digital skills and principles that guide their leadership practices and gaining a strong understanding of why leadership in the digital workplace is a core component of wider digital transformation. Leading effectively in the digital workplace means adopting and extending core leadership skills such as strategic thinking, effective communication and business acumen to include a new set of competencies like digital literacy, social media presence, brand building, employee and customer advocacy, showcasing value proposition, adaptability, cultural awareness etc.

HR is at the cusp of change, the way HR professionals can disrupt is the way companies engage with their people across the employee life-cycle. With a richer and personalized assessment and development model organizations aim to identify, measure and develop success competencies of their employees and thereby make the organization a group of winners.

One of the most critical role of HR is hiring the right talent and this space of Talent Acquisition has been a 100% increase in use of digital assessments as traditional ways of hiring are not relevant for this generation of Industrial era.  Digital assessments have helped Business leaders to maximizing their hiring efficiency, improving the feedback process, ability to take data based decision making. Digital assessments are helping Business, hiring manager and recruitment team to make a unified view of a candidate. Digital assessment gives the learning & development as well as the hiring manager a greater visibility into how areas of strength and areas of improvement. Online assessments are highly interactive, customizable, trustworthy, secure, and can be accessed in multiple devices across the world.

The learning & development function is also using Digital assessment to gain visibility into how effective trainings are, personalize the learning, measure learner retention and impact. Digital assessments help reinforce a learner’s own confidence and abilities while encouraging self-reflection. Moving to digital assessments can be extremely cost effective for employers as this allows companies to reduce the amount of time and money spent on measuring training effectiveness. These online assessment increase the learner and candidate engagement through gamification, collaborative learning, leadership dashboards which manually will be an uphill task.

Online assessments have been able to contribute to

  • Increased employee engagement
  • Higher collaboration
  • Identify right culture fit candidates based on data and emotions
  • Highly productive workforce
  • Measure company values and help in reiterating those values through various online channels
  • Increase brand value
  • Ability to attract passive candidates
  • Become a key decision making tool as part of the company’s promotion and frontline hiring process.
  • Drive a fair and transparent process with high correlation between internal interview and assessment scores
  • Near accurate prediction of strengths and development areas

While the world is fast adopting and welcoming various forms of Digital assessment for hiring, screening, competency assessment, assessment centres etc in large scale organization implementation, investment and adoption of these assessments remains a challenge. With the increase of Talent assessments coming in organizations are able to reimage the Talent Identification, Performance, Promotions, Learning & Development, HiPo and Leadership Development landscape.

Digital is changing the world. The shift from print to digital is a profound transition in how human beings learn. Hiring and development are increasingly based on a competency map. Digital platforms are connecting billions of young prospective candidates to employers and engaging employees to a great place to work.


Author-Sahana Shankar has over 10 years of experience in Human Resources. Currently she is AVP- HR at Paladion since July 2017. Prior to this, she has worked at Brillio as Global Lead- Leaning & Organization Development. And earlier she also worked with companies like Mindtree, Cognizant Technologies and TUV Rheinland Group. She is commerce graduate and earned her MBA-Human Resources & Finance from Anna University. She is Talent Transformation Leader Recognized as Top 40 HR professionals in India under the age of 40 by Jombay.

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