How to Test Microsoft Office to Hire and Train Better Employees

by Chris Parker on 16 March 2021

Most of the resumes that cross your desk probably list knowledge of Microsoft Office applications as a skill. But just because Microsoft Office proficiency is included on a candidate’s resume does not mean they are an expert at using all the applications, or that they know how to use every feature. Many people have a lot of experience with the basic usage of Outlook and Word, but that is the extent of their experience with Microsoft Office. And while sending email and using cut and paste are good general skills to have, many jobs require a higher level of ability.

A recent study shows that nearly one in three U.S. workers have very weak, or almost non-existent, computer skills. They may be able to use some computer applications well, such as those that are often found on phones and tablets, but they are at a disadvantage when it comes to using Microsoft Office for business purposes.

Hiring employees who lack basic Microsoft Office skills is a bad idea because it causes more work for your IT team and your training department. It also damages morale among team members who are technically proficient because they have to devote time to help co-workers who lack technical skills instead of concentrating on their own work and professional development. Ultimately, hiring employees without good MS Office knowledge can harm your company culture, weaken customer service delivery, and lead to increased employee turnover. So what is the best way to avoid hiring someone who lacks the skills needed to succeed at your company?

Pre-Employment Skills Tests

Pre-employment assessments, including Microsoft Office Skills Tests such as Word and Excel Skills Tests, help you objectively measure an applicant’s skills and abilities so you can focus on candidates who are more likely to be a good fit for the job they have applied for. Skills tests also eliminate concerns about bias and favoritism because they ask the same questions of every candidate in the same order. This allows you to screen for and concentrate on evaluating the level of knowledge and experience that is needed for the position.

Pre-employment tests are available for every aspect of a job that you can think of. Some of the more popular job-related assessments are Typing Skills Tests and technical job tests that help you evaluate candidates’ programming and coding abilities. Testing can also be used to measure soft skills that are not easy to quantify, such as integrity, teamwork and collaboration, and empathy. An employer is free to create and use pre-employment tests in whatever way makes sense for them as long as they follow the law, and all applicants for a particular job are asked the same questions. Therefore, it is important to work with your testing provider to ensure your employment tests are in compliance with state and federal laws.

Microsoft Office Skills Tests

Microsoft Office is the most common software package used in the business world today, and proficiency in its programs is recognized as one of the most important skills to have. By including Microsoft Office Skills Tests in your pre-employment assessment process, you will have a clear picture of the level of applicants’ ability. You can include other tests to ensure candidates have specialized skills, such as an Excel Skills Test for accounting and marketing positions, or a Typing Skills Test for data entry and administrative jobs.

Skills Testing and Training

Microsoft Office Skills Tests help you identify the overall level of computer proficiency for applicants as well as current employees. When you use skills testing for employees, you can pinpoint training and knowledge “gaps” and develop and deliver training programs to address areas where employees need help. The initial and subsequent tests also help you measure and evaluate the effectiveness of your training programs while you upskill employees.

Use Microsoft Office Skills Tests to Improve Productivity

By using Microsoft Office Skills Tests to train employees, you are helping them become better team members as well as helping them improve their job skills and expand their career options. This demonstrates a commitment to employee development that will increase engagement and improve retention.

Testing applicants helps you hire employees who are better suited to your company. They are more likely to be successful in their positions and will likely stay longer with your company. Testing current employees will help you strengthen your team, which will result in more productive employees.

Learn how Microsoft Office Skills Tests such as Excel and Typing Skills Tests can help you achieve better hiring outcomes and improve productivity. Request a demo today.

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