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Choosing An Online Assessment Tool, What Features Should I Look For?

Choosing an online assessment tool, what features should I look for?

When you think about the rigor of “traditional” testing, as well as the investment of time and money it entails, you will be amazed at how much difference can be made by adopting the right technology. Think about the amount of time it takes to draft and proofread questions for recruitment tests and term exams. Not to mention the long process of choosing a suitable venue and hiring a proctor to oversee the exam. We can go on and on, and by the time we are through, you would realize we would have expended a lot of money, time and physical logistics in this terribly long and tiresome process. However, employing the right technology can save you from all the hurdles, and even simplify the exam process for participants. This is exactly what you get when you opt for an online assessment tool instead of going through the traditional route of pen and paper. But just as the right club must be selected by batsman in order swing properly to hit the ball, you too need to choose the right software to successfully deploy your assessment and hiring process online to match the right candidates to the right job leads based on their talents, skills and interests. Thankfully, due to recent innovations in technology, these tools are now cheaper and more accessible than ever before. But the big question still remains – how do I identify the right online assessment tool? What kind of features am I supposed to look out for? It is extremely important to choose a tool that fits in with your organization needs, budget, and training and learning approach. The aim of this article is to show you how.

what to look for in an online assessment tool

Ease of access

Accessibility is a major factor to be considered when selecting an online assessment tool. This is because most of the time, the exam will not be location based. So it’s expected that candidates will be able to access the software online irrespective of where they are taking the exam from. They should be able to complete their registrations and login online from their computers irrespective of where they are. The software should also be easily accessible to the organizers of the exam. It must be fully based on the web, without any requirement to download or install any software. You may also wish for your exams to retain the normal traditional look and feel even though they are conducted online. In this case, you need to go for an online assessment tool that replicates real-life experiences.

Instant reporting and Analysis

One of the greatest benefits of using an exam testing software is that it creates no chances for human error. Manual testing usually involve sorting candidates reports and scripts manually, checking and analyzing them for performance. This process can be endless and very stressful for trainers and recruiters. And since it’s manually done, there are usually chances of mistakes setting in. However with an online assessment tool, you can finally take a breath of relief. Everything is taken care of by the system. So when choosing your preferred platform, make sure it can provide instant reporting and analysis based on the tests or exams taken by candidates. After the test/exam session, the system should be able to generate a detailed report on candidates’ performance based on their answers. This may include difficulty level of questions, candidates’ answers, time taken to provide answers, and other details that give insight into candidates’ performance, as well as those areas that needs to be improved upon.

Extensive test library

Another area you want to pay attention to when purchasing an online assessment tool is its library extension and customization options. Make sure the online system has an extensive question library that consists of various pre-built tests and exams to evaluate candidates’ skills and talents. The library must be relevant to the skills you’re testing for. Also, you want to choose a software that allows you to customize the questions and tests to meet your particular need. These needs may range from hiring to learning and development. This obviously affords you an added advantage.

User-friendliness

When it comes to engaging internet facilities, there’s nothing more important than simplicity. There’s no point setting up a sophisticated system that is difficult to get around for users. So when choosing a software examination platform, make sure it is one that is very user-friendly. It should be usable by the non-technical individual. This is the only way to have a system that will be comfortable and easy to understand for candidates. The system should be designed in such a way that either the administrator or the person taking the exam can easily schedule the exam without any challenges. The web interface should be intuitive and enable quick access to features. Candidates should be able to easily login with their details to exam sessions. Ideally, the software package should come with demos and FAQs that clearly define the process of creating questions and tests. It should also provide an extensive question library for evaluating candidates’ skills. It would be an added advantage if the online examination system is optimized to allow you create your own tests to meet your particular need at every given time. These may include hiring or learning and development.

Guaranteed Uptime

Uptime is another important area to consider when choosing an online examination software, especially when if you are planning to use it for hiring or some kind of training. Besides the need for a system that can support multiple users across different locations simultaneously, it’s also important to have an infrastructure that has a high response time. If the server structure of a particular solution is not robust, then it’s likely not good enough. A redundant server structure should also be in place to fill-in in the event of mishaps like power failure. An auto-save feature to save users progress should also be inclusive. The software should have low bandwidth requirement and should only require a computer and a strong internet connection for students to take tests. Most of the time, a webcam will also be required.

Pricing

Budget is always a constraint when purchasing any product, not just an online solution. Before putting out your money for any online exam software, make sure you have tested it and found it satisfactory to meet your basic needs. Thus you want to look out for organizations that offer free trial versions of their software solutions. However such versions are usually not without some advanced features. But not to worry, you can always activate more features once you purchase the full product. Most online systems allow you to pay only when a test has been taken. You also get the chance to take advantage of more advanced features as the software platform is constantly being updated. But this is usually after you become a premium user.

Great Customer Support

Most of the time, recruiters don’t have the technical knowledge required to maintain online systems. For them issues such as bug-fixing, updating software and other operational and routine tasks, are rocket sciences. Conducting exams involving advanced features like simulation tests will also be very difficult without some form of assistance. This is why it’s extremely important to choose an online exam software provider that has a customer service that provides operational support round the clock. They should also have a technical team working tirelessly at the back-end to make the software compatible and keep it up to date. The Bottom Line Online exam software is the way to go in our rapidly evolving digital world. Even big companies like Apple now recruit through the internet. We hope this article will help you in choosing the right online assessment tool that will meet your company needs. Try to leave a comment to share your experience or ask us any more questions. We will be glad to help you.

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