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​With around 2.7 million civilian employees, the U.S. government is the nation’s largest employer. On June 26, 2020, President Trump issued an Executive Order calling for skills-based hiring reforms at the federal level. Emphasizing the importance of skills, the order will revise hiring practices and standards within the federal government and will eliminate degree-based requirements where possible. Positions legally requiring a degree are an exception.

By reforming its hiring standards, the government is taking a definitive step away from hiring based on education level and moving toward a more inclusive approach based on skill and competency. Accurate and reliable skills assessments and pre-employment tests will play a vital part in this shift.

Shifting Focus to Skills

The government is not alone in its desire to shift to competency-based hiring. A similar change is taking place within businesses across the country. With the rising costs of a college education, many workers are seeking alternate routes to gain skills and experience. Employers are recognizing the validity of skills gained outside the classroom, and realizing not all qualified candidates will have a college degree.

Hiring with skills-based assessments ensure individuals most capable of filling the role and its responsibilities are hired for the position. It also encourages a more inclusive workforce based on skill instead of solely on education level. America’s private employers have also been working to modernize their recruitment efforts and secure talent through skills-based and competency-based hiring. In fact, according to a recent survey, 24% of employers have a formal skills-based hiring effort underway and 36% are exploring it.

Benefits of Skills-Based Hiring

Nocti Business Solutions offers more than 130 technical skills assessments across nearly every industry. Our services enable companies to hire quality candidates and build a competent and qualified workforce. We can help your business implement skills-based hiring with our valid and reliable skills assessments. Here are just a few benefits of skills-based hiring with NBS.

Efficient & Cost-Effective

Hiring can be expensive and time-consuming. On average it takes 42 days and costs $4,129 to fill a new position. To complicate things, the current skills gap makes it difficult to find qualified candidates with the necessary skills. This gap is most prevalent within skilled trade jobs and high-skilled STEM (science, technology, engineering, mathematics) jobs.

Skills-based assessments cut down on hiring costs by efficiently screening candidates to find those with the right skills and knowledge for the position. With more qualified candidates to choose from, hiring managers can confidently hire the most competent and skilled applicant for a position.

More Accurate Indicator of Job Performance

Differentiating between applicants can be difficult, especially when information is only supplied by applications, resumes, and self-assessment surveys. It is common for job applicants to lie about their skills and experience and to fill out a self-assessment or personality questionnaire with answers they believe will increase their chances of being hired. These types of self-assessment questionnaires do not yield useful information, do not differentiate between candidates in any useful way, and are not an accurate indicator of job performance.

Instead, skills-based assessments offer a concrete way to measure skills and knowledge relevant to the industry and the position. Hiring managers have insight into an applicant’s specific skill level and see areas of strength and weaknesses. Skills assessments are a more accurate prediction of job performance and companies who use competency-based tests are 24% more likely to have employees who exceed performance goals.

Qualified & Competent Workforce

Skills-based assessments lessen the chances of a bad hire and decrease turnover rate. With a close look at a candidate’s specific skills and abilities, hiring managers can confidently place qualified individuals where they are needed most. Additionally, the insight into a candidate’s strengths and weaknesses allows for more targeted training and reduces time to competency.

Skills-based assessments can also be used to fill leadership positions. When promoting from a pool of similar candidates, scores from initial pre-employment tests and scores from more recent skills assessments show how an employee’s abilities have grown from hire to the present day. This enables organizations to fill leadership positions based on merit and skill-level—creating a more qualified and productive workforce.

Skills-Based Hiring with NBS

Modernizing your hiring practices with skills-based assessments will help you look beyond a candidate’s education level and confidently hire based on their knowledge and skills. However, not all tests are created equal. Assessments must be relevant to the industry and thoroughly tested to ensure they are fair and without bias. Our skills assessments and pre-employment tests are developed by teams of industry experts and undergo extensive testing to ensure results are fair and accurate. For more information on skills-based assessments, download our free guide “Five Things to Know About Pre-Employment Tests” or contact us directly.

Five Things You Need to Know About Pre-Employment Tests

Not sure how to utilize pre-employment tests within your organization? This free resource outlines five crucial things to know about pre-employment tests and how they can be used to face your hiring challenges.