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I am a customer focus consultant in Canada but do a fair bit of work also in the US. I always point out to my clients that the creation of a customer focused culture begins with ensuring that ALL new hires have a strong customer service aptitude. I suggest that they don't even consider interviewing a person who has not first passed a hurdle in the form of a pre-interview test that demonstrates a set level of CS aptitude.

I have two questions:

1)Do you know of any good web based tests for this purpose?

2) In the US is this considered risky practice from a legal perspective?

Eric Fraterman

wendii's picture

Eric

We use and I trained with SHL. They have a test battery specifically designed for customer service agents.

http://www.shl.com/SHL/americas/Products/Access_Personality/Access_Perso...

They have also been very good at giving advice on the legal/technical issues in my experience.

*Disclaimer I have no financial interest - just a satisfied customer - although I have never used any of the other test providers.

Wendii

maura's picture

My first several years in a "real job" were spent at Psychological Assessment Resources, which publishes tests like these. I'm not qualified to recommend any specific tests, but I can point you to their catalog so you can evaluate for yourself.

[url]http://www3.parinc.com/products/productlist.aspx?SubjectCode=O&Descripti...

Most tests of this type (regardless of publisher) do require specific training in order to administer and interpret them correctly, which is where some of the legal risks can come in. One exception I know of is the Self-Directed-Search, which individuals can take and score themselves...but I can tell you, the SDS is a fairly transparent test, so if you are at all concerned about candidates trying to make themselves look like they are a better match to a job than they really are, the SDS can not help screen them out.

One of the disclaimers that is on everything PAR published, is that no single test should be taken too heavily into consideration, and that you need to use more than one assessment method in order to get a clear/valid picture of the person you are evaluating. So do keep that in mind - any test you choose is going to have its weaknesses, and you need to understand them and be able to interpret results appropriately if you are going to do this the right way. Don't go administering any inkblot tests, and you should be fine. :wink: