What Are the Reactions to Online Assessment Centers?
In response to governmental lockdowns associated with the COVID-19 pandemic, many assessment and development centers had to swiftly transition their brick-and-mortar assessment locations online. The transition went certainly smoother for those who started the digital transformation early. Mercer’s 2017 survey highlighted that even three years before the pandemic, 43% of organizations were already planning to start using virtual assessment centers. And in the following year, Mercer found that 66% of North American organizations were already using virtual day-in-the-life centers. Hence, the lockdowns only accelerated the adoption of technology in the assessment center practice.
Perhaps the biggest obstacle to the digitalization of assessment centers has been the concern about participant experience. How could we possibly recreate the rich “executive” environment and high-touch experience in an online format? What about the networking and team-building opportunities? Would participants still perceive the assessment center as engaging and fair?
We recently surveyed 96 managerial-level participants to better understand their reactions to an online, day-in-the-life assessment center. The center consisted of psychometric tests, a case study, in-box exercises, and live video role-plays. The survey was administered right after participants completed the assessment and before seeing their results. We asked a variety of questions using a 5-point Likert scale, ranging from strongly agree to strongly disagree. Here is what we found:
Participant Reactions to Pinsight’s Online Assessment Center
|Agree or Strongly Agree|
|In general, I am satisfied with the assessment process.||82%|
|The assessment is more interesting, engaging, and challenging than other assessments I have completed.||86%|
|I believe the assessment itself was fair.||79%|
|The assessment measured the skills necessary to perform well on the job.||77%|
|I would very much like to work for the organization that requested my assessment.||91%|
|I intend to accept the job, if offered.||90%|
As seen above, a majority of participants were satisfied with the online administration of their assessment center. They found it to be more interesting, engaging, and challenging than other assessments they had completed. They also viewed the online assessment center as fair and believed that it measured job-relevant skills. Similarly, large majority of participants held favorable views of the organization that requested their online assessment center and they intended to accept the job offer.
These results are similar to other research on participant reactions to brick-and-mortar assessment centers. Perhaps our findings alleviate practitioners’ initial concerns and hesitation with the online administration of their assessment centers. Our results suggest that participants still react positively to the methodology even in its online format.‹ Previous PostNext Post ›