Job simulators prepare job seekers with soft skills training and realistic job previews.
When you’re unemployed, you want a job. The tyranny of the urgent, namely the need for basics of food and shelter, will often skew one’s judgment. While you know you’d rather work behind the scenes, limiting your interaction with the public, six months into a job search with few prospects, you confidently share with a job counselor, “I’d love a job in customer service.”
I’ve had the privilege of volunteering as a job counselor for an employability training program in Central Florida. One of my students was struggling with a resume somewhat littered with a series of jobs showing less than six months of employment.
“I just wanted to work and thought I could do it.”
“Everyone says I’m friendly, so I thought the customer service job at the hotel would be perfect.”
“I love talking on the phone, so what could be so hard about working in a contact center?”
To help job seekers gain a sense of perspective, workforce development programs with an emphasis on soft skills training are well served to implement job simulators as part of their curriculum. These engaging talent assessments place individuals in real-world scenarios where they have the opportunity to interact with virtual customers and solve actual workplace issues. Performance is scored based on the key skills required for successful performance in specific jobs.
The program for which I volunteered uses Employment Technologies’ EASy Simulation® Virtual Customer. This job simulator quickly and accurately predicts top performers who will greet customers with warmth and enthusiasm, resolve issues, confidently promote products and services, exceed expectations, and build customer loyalty.
Imagine the shock when self-proclaimed “friendly” students enrolled in our program did not receive a high performance score! While friendliness is a critical aspect of customer service, successful performance also requires actively listening to customers, responding courteously to issues and complaints, and following through with solutions to ensure a positive customer experience.
“I know you want a job, but our greater goal here is to find the right position for your unique skill set. We want you to find work that has potential to define a career. Let’s refocus your resume.”
Integrating job simulators into workforce development curriculum makes sense for these reasons:
- The immersive simulation gives students practical experience in a supportive environment. “You’re scoring high when there’s no pressure. Let’s work on stress-coping mechanisms.”
- Job counselors are given context for crucial conversations during the job placement phase. “I know you want to work in hospitality, so let’s look at what it means to be conscientious on the job.”
- Students can reference the simulation experience during interviews, potentially bridging the gap between training and actual experience. “While I haven’t worked in a restaurant before, in the customer service simulation, I was drawn to the problem-solving aspect of the work and scored high.”
In addition to job simulators, virtual interview platforms are also available. These two online tools will bring clarity to a search for employment and boost job placement.
Ready to empower your students for career success? Contact us today for your free consultation at 888.332.0648.