Why Testing Your Trainees Makes a Difference in Their Engagement and Your Success

The word ‘test’ strikes varying degrees of fear in the hearts of most people; perhaps that’s why many learning institutions have shifted to the word ‘assessment.’ Either way, the word can make you flash back to those sweaty-palmed school days when you knew your grade hinged on how well you did or didn’t perform on a single exam.

However, when it comes to virtual training, well-designed and administered tests can actually be a positive experience for your employees — one that increases their engagement and contributes to the training’s (and your company’s) ultimate success.

Assessments for Learning

Post-training (and mid-training) assessments aren’t always administered for the purpose of judging the trainees’ performance, skills, or knowledge. Often, they can be what are known in the education world as assessments for learning. Assessments for learning (rather than assessments of learning, which we’ll discuss next) focus on what the tests can teach the trainees.

Such activities can provide subjects with personalized learning experiences by allowing them to evaluate themselves, make judgements about their own performance, and see where they need to improve. Done correctly, these kinds of tests should encourage employees to think critically and dig deeply for greater understanding and skill development. Project-based assessments are particularly useful in this regard, as they promote continuous self-feedback.

Assessments of Learning

Whereas assessments for learning foster learner engagement, assessments of learning foster trainer/training efficacy. Companies will see four primary benefits from implementing post-training assessment geared toward testing attendees’ understanding and retention of the concepts and skills taught in a training session:

  • Inspire improvement – When you assess employees after a training program, you can determine whether the training has produced the desired outcomes and identify where to make improvements. The more your employees get out of corporate training, the more your corporation will get out of its employees.
  • Foster accountability – Post-training assessments hold both trainers and trainees accountable to company training standards. They motivate trainers to create engaging, effective content, and they prompt trainees to bring their best effort as well.
  • Improve employee retention – Employees become more committed to their jobs when they recognize that their company is committed to their learning and development. In addition, their confidence in their own skills and abilities increases. Testing your trainees helps you to ascertain how successful your training efforts have been, which in turn lets you know how successful they will be in their roles.  
  • Increase return on investment (ROI) – As their ability to do their work improves, skilled and properly-trained employees translate to your company’s success. Regular evaluations will measure training effectiveness so you can refine your process, enhance trainee engagement, and ultimately improve your bottom line.

Jigsaw Interactive has a vast array of assessment methods from which to choose, whether you want to use them as learning or training-evaluation tools. You can conduct true and false, multiple choice, fill-in-the-blanks, short-answer, matching, or project-based tests, among other options. We hope you’ll use them to help fulfill your employees’ potential and your company’s purpose.