Before you can assess an employee’s performance, you have to hire that person. But how do you know who you’re hiring—especially if the jobs you’re hiring for require certain interpersonal and team skills?
The answer, says Joseph Sefcik, is to have potential employees undergo simulations that mimic situations they’ll encounter on the job. Sefcik is president/founder of Employment Technologies Corp., which offers EASy Simulation® software to help companies find the right hires and increase employee retention.
In the simulation program for tellers, for example, testing for competencies in such areas as member interactions and transaction and keystroke accuracy produce better information than written tests, he says.
“What are people required to do on the job? What are the competencies that distinguish high performers from low performers? That’s what our simulations measure.”
Sefcik says simulations also check for discernment via the options selected by test takers. “There’s not always one right choice. But what we look for is someone who can choose what’s most appropriate for the circumstances.”
Besides pre-employment screening, Sefcik says simulations serve another purpose.
“They’re a way to look at bench strength: Who do you want to consider for eventual promotion? Simulation shows what it’s like to do a certain job and gives the person doing it a realistic set of expectations.”
By showing whether candidates are ready to move up, the simulations also give credit unions leeway in how they time promotions.
“If someone’s not quite ready,” he says, “the credit union can say, ‘To be considered for promotion, here’s where we’d like you to improve.’ This generates motivation and helps retention by giving credit unions time to bring employees up to speed.”