Online Job Simulations and Talent Assessment.
What comes to mind when you think of a simulation? Whether you imagine a flight simulator or a simulated ride at a theme park, the term typically evokes an image of a highly interactive, engaging experience. Job simulations bring this realism to the workplace.
Job simulations are not traditional employment tests. They are online virtual workplaces that immerse applicants in key job roles where they perform actual job tasks and solve real workplace issues.
While other talent assessment tools may provide insight into a person’s opinions or ability to take a test, only job simulations provide a direct measure of performance. As a result, job simulations are proven to predict performance with unparalleled accuracy.
How do Employers Use Job Simulations?
Simulations can be used in all phases of the HR process, including hiring, interviewing, and training and development.
Hiring. Job simulations give companies a competitive advantage by pinpointing top-performing applicants. Simulations are proven to identify applicants who will perform better and reach performance goals faster. By hiring someone with a stronger skill set, businesses not only save cost, but they earn a much greater and faster return.
Interviewing. Employment interviewing is often an expensive, time-consuming process influenced by personal biases. Recognizing the inefficiencies of traditional interviewing, organizations are increasingly switching to virtual interviews, particularly for first round interviews. Virtual interviews simulate in-person interviews by combining video or voice capture technology with structured, behavioral interview questions to increase consistency, accuracy, and fairness. Virtual interviews are available 24/7, expanding access to qualified candidates, overcoming time restrictions, and eliminating travel costs.
Onboarding and Development. Employee onboarding and development is a natural use of simulation because employees gain experience performing the same tasks they will handle on the job. Simulations create a risk-free environment where employees can practice key job behaviors, perfect their techniques, and perform for optimal results. Consequently, employees require less training and are better prepared. For new employees, simulations have shown to reduce training time by as much as 66%. By shortening the learning curve, employers not only save training dollars, they can also earn thousands to millions of dollars from increased productivity.
What Are the Benefits of Job Simulations?
Realistic. There’s a reason new drivers are given a short road test before they’re granted a driver’s license. While the written test and eye test are important, only the road test proves whether the person can actually drive. Just like a road test, job simulations let participants test drive the job and prove they have what it takes to succeed.
Engaging. Job simulations look and feel different than other HR tools. Highly visual and interactive, simulations expose participants to circumstances that might otherwise take weeks or months to experience on the job. Simulations allow people to handle the most challenging issues, to learn from their mistakes without consequences, and to experience mastery and success—making a direct impact on job satisfaction, performance, and productivity.
Accurate. Job simulations maximize the amount of information gathered in the shortest amount of time. As a result, simulations typically double or triple the amount of information as compared to traditional tests. Armed with more information, employers are able to make more accurate, informed selection decisions.
Fair. Job simulations create a level playing field where candidates are given an equal opportunity to succeed. Because they are highly job relevant, job simulations result in higher accuracy, more favorable applicant acceptance, fewer legal challenges, and less adverse impact than traditional employment tests.
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Joseph T. Sefcik is the founder and president of Employment Technologies. A thought leader in simulation and assessment technology, he pioneered some of the earliest job simulations for organizations such as The Coca Cola Company, Ford Motor Company, and the New York Police Department. For more than 30 years, his passion has been the advancement of simulation technology for personnel selection and development.