Top Skills Tests For State

According to Statista, state and local governments employ millions of people across the nation, including various administrative personnel. These entities employ over 2 million office and administrative support professionals. While the hiring process of each local or state government will vary, many of these organizations rely on skills tests to evaluate new candidates.

These assessments take many forms and are useful for evaluating an applicant’s hard and soft skills. Hard skills include position-specific abilities directly related to the job they are applying for. For instance, a finance professional must possess accounting skills.

Conversely, soft skills are non-job-specific abilities such as communication skills or the ability to reason. A candidate that does not possess the requisite soft skills may not succeed in a particular role even if they have the talent and job knowledge required to perform the tasks associated with the position.

State and local governments can choose from hundreds of soft and hard skills tests. However, some assessments are particularly useful when evaluating candidates for local or state government roles, including:

General Skills Test

Government agencies may incorporate several generalized skills assessments into their screening process. These skills tests measure soft skills that are essential for certain positions. For example, an administrative professional who frequently sends emails may need to take an Email Etiquette assessment. A few other soft skills tests include:

  • Numerical Proofreading
  • Reasoning Ability
  • Attention to Detail
  • Data Checking

The specific soft skills assessment that a state or local government agency deploys will depend largely on the responsibilities associated with each vacant position.

Typing Skills Test

Several typing skills tests are available for state and local government agencies. Again, the specific assessments they use will depend on the position to be filled. For instance, a typing skills test measures an applicant’s typing speed and accuracy. They must retype a provided paragraph using standardized word processing equipment.

When administering this type of skills test, the government agency looks for a good combination of speed and accuracy. The ability to type rapidly is useless if the information is filled with typos and other grammatical errors.

In addition to the general typing skills test, there are also industry-specific assessments that cover topics such as legal, finance, or even audio transcription. Regardless of the subject matter of the typing skills test, accuracy is essential.

Excel Skills Test

Microsoft Excel remains one of the most popular accounting and finance platforms among state and local governments. Naturally, this makes the Excel skills test one of the primary pre-employment assessments for government administrative roles.

As with the typing skills assessment, the Excel skills test has several variations. The most basic option covers introductory topics such as Formatting, Functions and Formulates, Reports, Creating Workbooks, etc. This online skills assessment contains 40 questions in varying formats, such as multiple choice and true/false.

State and local governments may utilize a higher-level assessment when filling positions requiring a more advanced understanding of Excel. The advanced skills test covers in-depth topics and utilizes real-world simulation software, which requires applicants to prove their knowledge.

Local or State Government Skills Assessment

Some government organizations may also administer a Local or State Government skills assessment when hiring administrative or support staff.

The Local Government assessment covers several topics: Capital Finance, Citizen Engagement, Transparency, Core Services, and Structure and Form of Local Government. This skills test ensures that prospective staff understand their employer’s expectations for government employees.

The State Government assessment covers some of the same topics as the Local Government skills test. However, it also addresses broader subjects such as Agriculture, Intergovernmental Relations, and Emergency Management. Both assessments have 40 questions of various formats, including multiple-choice, select-all-that-apply, and true/false.

Behavioral Assessment

Behavioral assessments have become a valuable tool for state and local government organizations. A behavioral assessment provides insights into a candidate’s work ethic, personality, communication skills, and cognitive function.

Whereas skills assessments measure a candidate’s abilities, behavioral screening tools allow government organizations to predict how successful an applicant will be in a particular position.

Behavioral assessments benefit other staff members as well. They allow employers to ensure that new hires will be a good cultural fit. Ensuring a good fit is important as it prevents the morale drain associated with a poor hire. Existing teams do not accept new members who don’t exhibit the same workplace values, and they can be quite difficult to keep happy if forced to work with incompatible staff.

Skills Assessment Solutions from eSkill

eSkill is an industry leader in the online skills testing industry. Request a demo to learn how you can use employment assessments such as typing and Excel skills tests to make better hires throughout your organization.

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