GBT Assessment Guidelines

These guidelines are being provided to help you achieve the following objectives when administering and scoring online or paper-based assessments:

  • To maintain the integrity (i.e., reliability and validity) of the assessment process
  • To ensure that the assessments are administered and scored fairly and consistently across all applicants and employees
  • To maximize efficiency in administering and scoring the assessments
  • To minimize the risk of litigation due to unfair or discriminatory selection practices
  • To establish credibility and trust among applicants and employees
  • To safeguard the security of all assessments and assessment materials
  • To ensure the confidentiality of assessment results

The following guidelines are intended to assist you in administering, scoring, and safeguarding assessments in your organization. None of the guidelines should be construed as legal advice. Please consult legal counsel as needed regarding assessment procedures and selection practices within your organization.

Administering Assessments

  • It is highly recommended to administer all appropriate assessments to an applicant before conducting an employment interview. This approach improves the efficiency and cost-effectiveness of the selection process because less time is spent interviewing individuals who do not have the basic skills, abilities, and job-related traits needed for successful job performance.

  • A stopwatch or electronic timer should be used to time all paper-based assessments that have time limits. A watch or clock with a sweep second hand should never be used for timing paper-based assessments. Timing errors can significantly affect scores. In addition, it is essential to adhere strictly to the time limit for each assessment.

  • The order in which selected paper-based assessments are administered should be consistent across individuals for the same job. If the order of the assessments is different from individual to individual, it is possible that some individuals may receive an advantage over other people.

  • Do not provide individuals with a calculator for any of the assessments.

  • Read the directions aloud exactly as written for each paper-based assessment. Standardizing this process ensures that all individuals are provided the same information and are given the same opportunity to ask questions.

  • Except for situations concerning the accommodation of people with disabilities, no individual should be given special treatment during the administration of any assessment. When administering paper-based assessments, administrators should not deviate in any way from the “standard” administration procedure. Although administrators may restate directions in their own words when applicants request clarification, the following practices should not be permitted under any circumstance:

    • “Coaching” individuals or providing “tips” regarding ways to improve assessment results (e.g., telling individuals to skip certain questions or to guess randomly at answers, spending an excessive amount of time explaining instructions in great detail, providing additional sample questions, explaining the structure and design of an assessment).

    • Administering “practice” assessments to individuals (e.g., sample of questions similar to those included in an assessment).

Scoring Assessments and Using Standards

  • All paper-based assessments should be scored by using the appropriate scoring templates (e.g., clear plastic overlays).

  • An individual should be considered for a job only if he/she meets or exceeds the established assessment standards (i.e., “passes” all assessments administered). Conversely, if an individual does not meet one or more assessment standard, the individual should not be considered for the job (see FAQ).

  • Administrators, supervisors, and managers should rarely deviate from established assessment standards. Ignoring assessment results and making selection decisions based on “gut feelings” or personal biases without any additional objective data may invalidate the assessment process. In addition, deviations from established standards may result in legal problems if individuals who make these exceptions tend to favor one race, ethnic group, gender, or age group over others. Under almost all circumstances, it is important for assessment standards to be applied consistently. If it is necessary to deviate from established assessment standards due to extenuating circumstances, be sure to document the situation and to provide a detailed explanation for the discretionary use of scores. Keep in mind, however, that the discretionary use of scores may result in unexpected legal problems.

  • If an individual does not meet a particular assessment standard, he/she should not be administered the assessment again until a specified “reassessment period” has elapsed. This reassessment period, which should be established as a policy within your organization, should be determined on the basis of business needs (see FAQ).

  • Although the assessments measure important skills, abilities, and job-related traits that are required for successful job performance, meeting all assessment standards does not necessarily mean that an individual is suitable for the job. Other job-related factors not measured by the assessments may also contribute to job success. The skills, abilities, and job-related traits measured by the assessments are important job requirements, but these requirements must be considered in the context of other relevant criteria. Therefore, in making a selection decision, consider scores as one piece of information, along with other information about the individual, such as interview evaluations, work history, and relevant training received.

Communicating Assessment Results

  • “Assessment results” refer to information concerning whether individuals met or did not meet the standards for assessments administered to them. Assessment results should be disclosed only to the appropriate individuals (i.e., applicant, hiring supervisor or manager, other individuals involved in the selection process). Assessment results should be considered confidential and should be protected in accordance with confidentiality policies in your organization.

  • When communicating assessment results (i.e., not “raw scores” but whether or not standards were met) to applicants and employees, the following practices should not be permitted under any circumstance:

    • Reviewing specific questions or answers to questions on assessments

    • Providing confidential information about scoring tools and procedures

    • Providing an explanation of why the individual did not meet a standard

Maintaining the Security of Assessments

  • All individuals having access to the assessments, scoring tools, or information concerning these instruments should not disclose any administration and scoring details that typically are not available to applicants. Administrators, supervisors, managers, and other individuals who are provided classified information about the assessments are expected to maintain the confidentiality of the information (see FAQ).

  • All paper-based assessments, scoring tools, and administration materials should be available only to individuals who are authorized in your organization to administer and score the assessments.

  • When not in use, the paper-based assessments and their related administration and scoring materials should be kept in a locked file cabinet or secured area. Unauthorized individuals should not have access to assessment materials under any circumstance. This practice is required to maintain the security of the assessments.

  • The assessments and their related administration and scoring materials are copyrighted. Individuals having access to these materials are not permitted to print, photocopy, or reproduce them under any circumstance.

See Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) regarding the administration, scoring, and use of assessments.