Category Archives: January 2015

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Public Seminar: Test and Measurement Design 101

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Join us tomorrow for a seminar-workshop on Test and Measurement Design! Learn how to carry out in-depth educational and psychological assessments and interpret the results. This seminar is recommended for HR practitioners, psychometricians, teachers, professors and guidance counselors.

Participants will learn about the importance of psychological testing, understand the basic concepts of reality, validity and test construction, and be able to critically evaluate test results.

Course Outline

Brief History of Psychological Measurement
Importance of Psychological Testing
Characteristics of Psychological Instruments
Purposes of Test and Measurement
Types of Tests
Bloom’s Taxonomy
Application of Psychological Measurement (Educational Testing, Personnel Testing and Clinical Testing)
Ethics in Psychological Testing
Steps in Test Construction
Choosing the test Format
Validity and Reliability
Scoring and Interpretation

About the Instructor

Dr. Maria Vida G. Caparas holds a Master’s Degree and Ph.D., Summa Cum Laude, in Psychology. She is an Accredited Trainer of the Philippine Government with invaluable experiences in Organizational Development as a Human Resource, Training and OD practitioner. She authored three books on Psychology/HR Management and was a Trainer Delegate of DFA-Foreign Service Institute in Italy and Singapore in 1999-2000. Dr. Caparas is a recipient of various national awards and also a professor in prestigious universities. She authored three books on Psychology/HR Management namely “Psychological Assessment: Theory and Practice”, “Uses of Psychological Tests”, and “Human Resource Management.”

Investment

P9,520 includes all course materials, instruction by an expert facilitator, snacks and lunch, a personalized certificate and student notebook.

Register now!


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Find Top Qualified Candidates with Job Simulations

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Finding the most qualified candidate for a job is seldom easy. Even when you think you’ve found the perfect candidates, they sometimes don’t succeed as you thought they would. Through pre-employment job simulations, recruiters can find out whether the seemingly perfect candidate will actually do well on the job.

Job simulation tests present real-life work scenarios that assess how well a candidate would perform if on the job. Simulations engage candidates in environments that recreate what they would encounter in real life. Like an astronaut in training has to master a space shuttle simulator, candidates can demonstrate their skills and expertise while navigating a job simulation.

Job simulations can apply to many different industries and functions, including call centers, manufacturing, finance, banking, and even simple office tasks. Say you’re looking for someone to run your company’s social media accounts. You can assess the candidates’ skills through MS Office and Digital Literacy simulations to make sure they are well versed in these competencies. Through these assessment tests, you can better determine if a candidate truly has the skills needed to succeed.

Some of the benefits of implementing pre-employment simulation tests include:

  • Higher engagement. The recruiting process isn’t always easy and can even be quite stressful and/or dull. Through job simulations, candidates can experience what a day on the job is like and will get a better idea of what the role entails, increasing their level of understanding and engagement.
  • Better accuracy. Since job simulations test how a candidate would apply his or her skills to an actual work situation, they showcase how the candidate will perform in real life. The scores of a simulation test more accurately predict whether the candidate will be successful or not.
  • Increased objectivity. The task of recruiting is mostly subjective—candidates write resumes and cover letters in their own words, boasting about their skills, while recruiters read those resumes with their own personal preconceptions. Job simulations objectively evaluate how a candidate applies those skills to real work situations, reducing the level of bias toward a particular candidate.
  • Lower costs. If time is money, then the time spent recruiting, hiring, and training adds up. The cost multiplies when candidates don’t perform as expected and have to be replaced, making the recruiting process quite costly. Assessment and simulation tests save you money by helping you hire the right candidate the first time.
  • Workforce assessment. Job simulation tests are not just for pre-employment assessments. You can conduct employee evaluations that include job simulations to assess your current workforce’s skills and abilities. This can help you determine where extra training is needed.

Of course, as with most things, job simulations have a few downsides. Establishing job simulation testing in your company does incur a cost. It may be eventually offset by money saved from smarter hiring, but it still needs to be budgeted for. Candidates may also be nervous while taking the job simulation tests, which can affect their responses and inaccurately assess their abilities. Some candidates learn quickly on the job, so while their job simulation test scores may not be very high, they could still prove to be excellent employees who learn while doing.

They can’t replace a recruiter’s experience and judgment, but together with the information gleaned from a candidate’s resume, references, and the all-important interview, simulations can provide independent, objective data about current skills and abilities that can prove invaluable. In context with all of your other sources of information, it can make your decision clear.

Have you used job simulation testing as part of your recruiting process? Do you think it effectively helps assess a candidate’s skills and job potential?

Eric Friedman, Author

Eric FriedmanEric Friedman is the founder and CEO of eSkill Corporation, a leading provider of online skills testing for pre-employment assessment and benchmarking. Eric has degrees in Psychology and Business, and a fascination with matching people with roles they’re best at, and that they enjoy.

A company built on exceptional talent from Internet technology, test development, and iterative product development, eSkill leads as an independent assessment company helping HR departments with relevant and accurate job-based tests.

To learn more about Eric and eSkill, visit the company website at www.eskill.com, or contact him on LinkedIn.


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Public Seminar: Facilitation Skills

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Train the Trainer: Facilitation Skills

There is a difference between facilitating group discussions and controlling them. How do you do the former rather than the latter? This two-day workshop January 29 and 30 will help participants develop core facilitation skills and learn the stages of team development. The workshop is recommended for trainers and facilitators and will go over the difference between facilitation, instruction and training.

The course will implement active learning to teach participants the competencies linked to effective group facilitation and some tools to make meetings easier and more productive.

Course Outline

Defining your role and how facilitators work
Establishing ground rules
Content and process
Types of thinking
Dealing with controversial issues and divergent perspectives
Communication skills
Listening for common ground
Common facilitation techniques
Giving effective feedback
The language of facilitation
Dealing with difficult dynamics
Building sustainable agreements
Stages of team development
Analysis tools

About the Instructor

Dr. Maria Vida G. Caparas holds a Master’s Degree and Ph.D., Summa Cum Laude, in Psychology. She is an Accredited Trainer of the Philippine Government with invaluable experiences in Organizational Development as a Human Resource, Training and OD practitioner. She authored three books on Psychology/HR Management namely “Psychological Assessment: Theory and Practice”, “Uses of Psychological Tests”, and “Human Resource Management” and was a Trainer Delegate of DFA-Foreign Service Institute in Italy and Singapore in 1999-2000. Dr. Caparas is a recipient of various national awards and also a professor in prestigious universities.

Investment

P9,520 includes all course materials, instruction by an expert facilitator, small group workshops, a specialized student manual, personalized certificate of participation, an eBook on facilitation skills and a complimentary ProfilesXT assessment.

Register now!

http://profilesasiapacific.com/index.php?menuname=Products&page=pxt

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Testing for Hard and Soft Skills

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When you’re looking for candidates to fill a position, it’s easy to see their technical skills—it’s all over their resumes in the projects they’ve worked on, their qualifications and experience. Few people write words like “integrity” and “prioritizing” on their resumes and even if they do, those words tend to be taken as filler words that don’t mean anything. But they do mean a lot. In fact, these soft skills are crucial when it comes to finding the right candidate.

Soft skills are the qualities that define a candidate as an individual and therefore as an employee. Sometimes called “people skills,” soft skills are subjective and include a person’s work ethic, time management skills, and ability to work in a team. These are skills that all employees should have in order to succeed. Depending on the job, some soft skills may be more important than others. For example, a candidate who will have to work on multiple projects at once should have the soft skills to be able to prioritize and meet deadlines. On the other hand, a candidate who will be working in a sales position should have soft skills of being outgoing, assertive, and self-confident.

Hard skills, on the other hand, are based on the experience and technical know-how. Hard skills cover the actual tasks that an employee is responsible for, like operating machinery, writing news articles, or using design software. For instance, a nurse’s hard skills include knowing how to check vital signs and administer first aid. An IT professional’s hard skills probably include application development and database administration.

One of the main differences between soft skills and hard skills is that hard skills are pretty easy to spot, since they’re usually clearly listed in a candidate’s resume. Hard skills are more tangible and objective than soft skills, so they’re easier to identify. Someone who lists “10 years of experience in graphic design” should have the hard skills associated with that job. Hard skills are not only easier to identify through a candidate’s list of experiences and education, they’re easier to test for as well. Through pre-employment testing you can find out if a candidate has the specific skills associated with a particular job.

Another difference between hard and soft skills has to do with an employer’s ability to offer training. While hard skills can be taught—an employee can take a workshop to learn how to use a specific type of software—soft skills are more innate and are not easily taught, since they’re subjective and strongly tied to a candidate’s personality. However, there are some ways to encourage soft skills—like reliability and a willingness to take risks—among employees. Through employee empowerment, engagement, and encouragement, employers can nurture a workplace environment that promotes soft skills.

So why should you look for candidates with both hard and soft skills? A candidate who has both sets of skills is a better-rounded person, and therefore is more likely to succeed at the job. Take the nurse mentioned above, who has the hard skills required for the job, like the medical training and know-how. But it’s the soft skills, like empathy and being a good listener, which can take that nurse from being average to being exceptional.

Although it can be tricky, it is possible to find out which candidates have the soft skills that will make them exceptional at the job. The interview stage is the perfect time to assess a candidate’s soft skills. A good interviewer should ask questions that shed light on the candidate’s personality traits and potential soft skills. Personality tests are also a tool to determine whether a candidate has the soft skills needed for a position.

What’s important to remember when thinking about hard skills vs. soft skills is how crucial each set is to the success of a given employee in the position you’re hiring for. Is a candidate with strong hard skills but weaker soft skills still going to do well at your company? Maybe the position doesn’t really require many soft skills, but the technical know-how an absolute must. In this case, you’re better off choosing the candidate with very strong hard skills. Just remember, a candidate with strong hard and soft skills can be a more valuable asset in the long run.

Eric Friedman, Author

Eric Friedman

Eric Friedman is the founder and CEO of eSkill Corporation, a leading provider of online skills testing for pre-employment assessment and benchmarking. Eric has degrees in Psychology and Business, and a fascination with matching people with roles they’re best at, and that they enjoy.

A company built on exceptional talent from Internet technology, test development, and iterative product development, eSkill leads as an independent assessment company helping HR departments with relevant and accurate job-based tests.

To learn more about Eric and eSkill, visit the company website at www.eskill.com, or contact him on LinkedIn.


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Public Seminar: Critical Thinking

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Join us on January 21 to 22 for a Critical Thinking seminar that will help participants analyze the world around them through rational thinking skills. The ability to clearly reason through problems and present arguments in a logical, compelling way has become a key skill for survival in today’s world. This two-day workshop will give you some practical tools and hands-on experience with critical thinking and problem solving.

This workshop is ideal for professionals in business or individuals who want to improve their critical thinking skills as a core competency. Participants will define critical and non-critical thinking, identify critical thinking styles and areas of strength, develop and evaluate explanation skills and more.

Course Outline

Understanding critical thinking
Where do other types of thinking fit in? (including whole-brain and left and right brain)
Pitfalls to reasoned decision making
The critical thinking process
A critical thinker’s skill set
Creating explanations
Dealing with assumptions
Common sense
Critical and creative thought systems
Plenty of hands-on case studies

About the Instructor

Dr. Maria Vida G. Caparas holds a Master’s Degree and Ph.D., Summa Cum Laude, in Psychology. She is an Accredited Trainer of the Philippine Government with invaluable experiences in Organizational Development as a Human Resource, Training and OD practitioner. She authored three books on Psychology/HR Management namely “Psychological Assessment: Theory and Practice”, “Uses of Psychological Tests”, and “Human Resource Management” and was a Trainer Delegate of DFA-Foreign Service Institute in Italy and Singapore in 1999-2000. Dr. Caparas is a recipient of various national awards and also a professor in prestigious universities.

Investment

P7,280 includes all course materials and VAT, instruction by an expert facilitator, a personalized certificate, an eBook on thinking skills and a complimentary Profiles Critical Thinking, Logic, Comprehension and Perception Assessment.

Register now!


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Workforce Magazine Suggests “Consider Outsourced Training”

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The award-winning Workforce magazine published an article titled Consider Outsourced Training that highlights the benefits of having employees trained with specialized programs and instructors.

Outsourcing training is a popular option for employers looking to reduce operating costs while increasing workplace expertise.

-Nidhi Srivastava, Workforce

Outsourced training is beneficial when your training partner stays current on industry trends, has expertise in their respective training fields, and maintains the resources to train your entire workforce quickly and efficiently. There are times when an in-house training team is either overwhelmed or too small to train a large group of employees, and outsourced training also brings new skills and knowledge to the company that can be dispersed to all levels.

The Workforce article, Consider Outsourced Training, touches on five points to analyze to find your perfect fit.

1. Your organization and industry. Almost every industry requires special skills and training. If your employees need to stay on top of the latest trends or compliance issues, outsourced training can ensure a direct flow of vital information.

Employers operating globally or in numerous locations may also find outsourcing viable because training can be online or through comprehensive seminars in a cost-effective, timely fashion. – Srivastava

2. A suitable training partner. Make sure the business you partner with for training has the same kind of company culture and values as yours. Avoid sending your employees mixed signals by asking them to follow one set of rules then sending them to a training partner that teaches otherwise. A good training partner is also an expert in all the fields you need your employees to be trained in, and should have the relevant resources.

3. The training method. Do you want the training to be done online? In person at your office? In person at your partner’s training center? On the job? Consider the nature of training that is needed to best teach your employees in the long term, and consider the logistics that will work best with your resources. If you only have fifteen employees, it may be wiser to have the training done on the job, instead of sending them all to a training center and leaving your business unmanned.

4. Legalities. Create an air tight contract and think about whether your training partner will have access to sensitive information and who will have ownership of any training materials created for the sessions.

In addition, the parties should be clear on who is responsible for the accuracy and content of the training. If the trainer is guaranteeing “up-to-date” information or compliance with governing laws, the company should document that warranty, and request indemnification by the trainer for claims relating to negligent training. – Srivastava

5. The benefits. In addition to flexibility and reliability, outsourcing training allows your company to draw on the insight of experts in their fields. It could open new opportunities as your employees network, and offers many more benefits unique to each company.

To read the full article, please visit Workforce.com.


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Develop Your Workforce in 2015

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2015 is going to be a big year for the Philippines. By the end of the year, we and all our ASEAN neighbors will be able to trade goods and services freely, which means increased competition, higher standards, and a freer flow of employees. In order to keep your workforce cohesive and up to the rapidly rising ASEAN standard, employers must develop their top talent and nurture their employees’ professional development.

Everything starts with a good hire

First things first; get the right people. Evaluate your employees and make sure you have the right people in the right position. It’s not too late to do this for your entire company! The integration is set to happen at the end of 2015, so start evaluating employees now. Find out which of your employees see a future with your company and let go of the employees who don’t. Avoid becoming a “passing” job where employees just wait for a better offer. Every employee you have at the end of 2015 should enjoy their jobs and believe in your company.

Getting your workforce in the best shape possible will take a lot of time, energy and resources. You’ll need to invest in advertising, interviewing, orientations, on-boarding, and the adjustment period in which an employee gets to know his or her job. It will be worth it. Your human capital will be prepared for the integration and you won’t (hopefully!) lose dozens of employees to other ASEAN companies.

Provide training and development

Once you have people who fit your company culture and have the right attitude to do their jobs, it’s time to train them. There are very few jobs in which you can hire someone and he or she automatically knows how to do the job seamlessly. You’ve spent a lot of time getting the right people working in your company, now it’s time to coach, mentor and train them.

It’s much easier, and usually more cost effective, to hire someone with the right attitude and train them for a position than to find the perfect fit. Helping your employees grow and showing an investment in their development will also help them understand they are valued by the company and remain loyal, even when presented with other job offers.

Give them the right resources

Every company works differently. The same can be said of each department, each team, and each individual. Because different employees will have their own unique productivity practices, be flexible enough to accommodate them with what they need. Provide meeting rooms, efficient hardware and software (no laptops from 1998), individual work rooms where employees can think out loud, adequate parking space, and whatever else they need so they can focus on their jobs.

The right resources also means allowing your employees to work during their most productive hours of the day. This may mean offering different work schedules, or even setting up a virtual work space where team members can interact online from wherever they are.

How else do you think companies should be developing their workforce in 2015? Share your thoughts in the comments below!


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Getting Back to Work After the Holidays

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The holidays and New Year countdown are exciting times; there are lights and decorations, presents, vacation days and, for some, new and unfamiliar places. In lieu of that, January may seem a little dull to employees who are dragging their feet about getting back to work. Remedy the lingering “vacation mode” by engaging employees at the workplace. Managers and HR can do this a number of ways, such as…

  • Have your holiday party after the holidays. December is a busy month, especially in retail, so it’s perfectly acceptable to tell employees to push the party to January when they return. It won’t necessarily remove the feeling of being on vacation, but it’s a clear indication that vacation is over and work is resuming after the party.
  • Hold a strategy meeting with your key employees and get them thinking about how to improve the company this year. Plan out the coming year’s events and have them each disperse the information among their own departments, so everyone has strategy on their minds.
  • Use employee training to prepare them with key skills needed for their jobs and the coming year. Discuss how the next year will be different from the last, and what to focus on when training for the job.
  • Have teamwork training that encourages healthy teamwork and cooperation. The activities are typically engaging and hands on to inspire cooperation, and will actively get your employees’ focus back on the office and their peers.
  • Teach your employees something new to start off the new year. Emphasize learning and development in your company, and keep minds sharp to tackle anything the new year could bring.
  • Switch up the previous “norm.” The beginning of a new year is a great time to shake things up. Rearrange the office for productivity, paint it a new color, or start a new exercise program for employees. Have you been considering a “casual Friday” dress code for a while now? Start it this year!
  • Last but not least, continue to be a good leader and motivator. It’s a simple task that should go without saying, but it will be your greatest tool in keeping employees engaged, loyal, and ready to do their jobs.
  • P.S. It wouldn’t hurt to offer free coffee in the mornings, at least for the first few weeks back.

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