Simple Scoring & Free Response Questions: Advanced Skills Testing Methods

by Chris Parker on 20 January 2021

When the pandemic changed life as we know it, HR professionals could no longer rely on business-as-usual approaches to screening candidates. So, talent acquisition professionals are turning to technology to evaluate prospective hires.

Although companies initially pivoted to “virtual” processes and systems to comply with physical distancing requirements, HR leaders have realized how essential tech-driven HR tools are to the hiring process. In fact, in a recent survey, 70% of HR executives reported that using technology more effectively is key to helping them mitigate the impact of the pandemic on their company’s bottom line.

How to Use Free Response Questions for Pre Employment Testing

Free-response questions enable hiring teams to evaluate candidates’ job-relevant skills, aptitude, and behavioral characteristics. When HR professionals use free response questions in the skills testing phase of the hiring process, they can obtain an in-depth understanding of how the candidate will perform on the job.

eSkill’s Free Response feature allows candidates to respond to pre-employment testing questions and complete tasks in many formats, including text, video, and voice response. The Free-Response feature also allows candidates to attach files, such as word documents, images, spreadsheets, PowerPoint presentations, audio files, and PDF files.

Here are some examples of how companies can leverage eSkill’s Free Response feature.

Assess written English language skills: In our increasingly digital world, writing skills are essential to a growing number of positions across industries. Customer-facing positions like Live Chat Operators, Account Executives, and Sales Associates need to communicate via email, live chat, and text message. Administrative, clerical, human resources, healthcare, and hospitality positions all require a certain proficiency level when writing in the English language.

  • Using the Free Response feature, HR professionals can select questions from eSkill’s library or create their own job-relevant writing prompts. Writing prompts enable hiring teams to evaluate the quality of candidates’ writing based on the criteria of their choosing, including grammar, syntax, vocabulary, spelling, clarity and fluency, and clear and logical structure within the text. Hiring teams can also evaluate candidates’ persuasive and technical writing skills.

Evaluate the quality of language translations: As digital transformation continues to accelerate and our world continues to become more interconnected, hiring workers capable of speaking in multiple languages is now a business imperative.

  • eSkill’s Free Response feature allows hiring teams to include video and voice recordings and text passages for candidates to translate. Candidates can be instructed to type the translation or record a video or voice response. eSkill’s Free Response feature also enables HR professionals to set a time limit for each question to prevent candidates from using translation software or “Googling” the answer. For instance, if the written prompt takes on average two minutes to translate aloud, the candidates will be given two minutes and twenty seconds to record a video response.

Test verbal communication skills: The ability to communicate effectively with customers, colleagues, supervisors, and business partners is an essential skill for positions across industries. It can provide candidates with job-relevant prompts and evaluate their voice or video responses to identify job-seekers with clear and concise communication skills.

Candidate-uploaded documents: The best way to assess many types of skills is to see the product of candidates’ work. For example:

  • When hiring for graphic design positions, create a timed free response question asking candidates to complete a graphic design project within 20 minutes.
  • For digital marketing positions, attach a file to the free-response question detailing the results of a Google AdWords campaign. Then, prompt candidates to create a slide deck outlining recommendations for changes to the existing campaign and ideas for future campaigns.

These examples are just a few ways eSkill’s Free Response feature can help recruiters and hiring teams identify top talent with job-relevant skills. Hiring teams can also use this feature to evaluate candidates’ problem-solving skills, situational awareness, and more.

Simple Scoring of Free Response Questions

Scoring the results of free-response questions does not have to be complicated. eSkill’s Simple Scoring feature enables any member of the hiring team with scoring access to rate responses with one to ten stars and add a comment for context. The response and corresponding score are available for the entire hiring team to see on the “Results by Question” page. With responses and scoring easily accessible, the hiring team can streamline scoring practices and reduce the time it takes to review free responses.

Team Scoring example

With the Team Scoring Feature, organizations can:

  • Designate multiple members of the hiring team as reviewers
  • Select an administrator to approve the scores of multiple reviewers
  • Create multiple scoring criteria for each question
  • Average the scores of multiple reviewers

eSkill’s cloud-based skills testing solutions enable companies to develop and execute a modern and effective hiring approach. And with unlimited training and support from eSkill’s dedicated U.S.-based Customer Success Managers, configuring employment assessments and leveraging the results is easy. With eSkill’s Simple Scoring and Free Response features, HR professionals can make informed hiring decisions more easily.

Interested in Using Simple Scoring and Free Response Solutions for Skills Testing?

Learn more about the benefits of using eSkill’s Free Response and Simple Scoring features, pre-employment tests, and on-demand video interviews to find qualified candidates quickly.

Request a demo today.

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