The Assessment and Development Centre method is one of the most accurate and valid assessment procedures, being used for both decision making in selection or promotion processes and for development purposes (Arthur, Day, McNelly & Edens, 2003; Schmidt & Hunter, 1998; Hardison & Sackett, 2004).
Assessment or Development Centres provide a number of benefits to an organization seeking to improve its approach to the selection and development of its employees, by helping the organization to identify and predict key behaviors in the workplace that transform people’s performance. These benefits can include:
The purpose of a Centre is to obtain the best possible indication of a person’s current or potential competencies that enable the person to perform in the target job/level of responsibility. The relevant competencies or criteria for future performance can be identified by carrying out a thorough job analysis of the role in question, which will enable the identification of those behaviors that differentiate successful from less successful performance.
Any single assessment centre consists of multiple components, which include behavioral simulation exercises, within which multiple trained assessors observe and record behaviors, classify them and evaluate them according to the competencies of interest.
Behavioral simulation exercises are designed to replicate the key challenges of the job in question and are typically used in combination with other assessment techniques to ensure comprehensive coverage of attributes and skills and to increase reliability of measurement.
Exercises are conceived so as to provide a standardized assessment for those competencies specific to roles ranging from entry-level to top senior management positions. They simulate either interactions with key persons in the role, or administrative issues of the job:
Competency based interview is another tool used for measuring competencies based on behaviors relevant to the job performance. It consists of a structured series of questions aimed at eliciting information on specific job-related criteria.
Competency based interviews rely on a thorough job analysis and lead to a strong correlation between the interviews’ outcomes and the job performance. They can be used as part of an Assessment and Development Centre or as an individual tool for measuring competencies.