This method of exercise is designed to measure a candidate’s presentation and speaking ability. It is developed and administered in a similar manner as the Problem Analysis Exercise method, except that the candidate is instructed that there will be a time limit for the presentation. This exercise is used primarily for Trainers and Public Information Officers.
Determining the level of Presentation Ability for the Target Job
Your job analysis has determined that the position requires the ability to present some sort of information to a group. The question then becomes “Present what information and what level of presentation ability is necessary upon entry?” Listed below are some examples of presentation topics:
- Policy and Procedures
Developing the exercise
This exercise requires the candidate to present information in a similar manner as performed on the job. The exercise must also measure presentation abilities necessary upon entry to the job. The subject matter expert (SME) is responsible for developing and preparing the instructions for completing the exercise. The SME then completes the presentation assignment, which is used to develop the scoring key.
Developing the scoring key
Based on the SME’s completed exercise the scoring key is developed primarily by using the SME’s judgment and the job analysis. The exercise is usually scored along two general criteria: 1) general presentation ability; and 2) content. Rating scales are used to rate each of the criteria to obtain a numeric score. The rating scales should be defined by benchmarks for each criterion. Benchmarks are suggested answers to the questions that are linked to the rating scale. Benchmarks provide a frame of reference for assessing the candidate’s responses objectively and consistently. There should usually be at least three suggested answers for each sub-criterion: a superior, a satisfactory, and an unsatisfactory response to the developed benchmarks. The SME should create answers that fit the different levels of the rating scale:
5. What would one expect or want an outstanding candidate to give as the best possible answer?
3. What is an acceptable answer that one would expect a qualified candidate to give?
1. What would one expect as a poor answer from a candidate who has little or no knowledge or skill on this job requirement?
Presentation Exercise Administration
Depending on the difficulty of the exercise, candidates will be scheduled twenty minutes to one hour before the interview. A room or cube containing a pad of paper and other office supplies will be the exercise administration room. An exercise administrator who is not part of the interview process is necessary to administer the exercise. The exercise administrator will read the specific instructions for the exercise to the candidate. When the candidate has five minutes remaining to complete the exercise, the exercise administrator will give the candidate a five-minute warning. When the time limit has expired or the candidate finishes the exercise, the exercise administrator will collect the candidate’s instructions and allow the candidate to take their notes into the interview room. The Presentation Exercise will be the first question in the interview.
If a panel scores the exercise and interview, the panel should be trained. After scoring all candidates, the panel should review their individual ratings as a group and make sure that there is a general consensus on each criterion. For example, on a scale of 1 to 5, if one rater gave a 4, one a 3, and the other a 1 on the same criteria, this might indicate some rater bias or misunderstanding of the candidate’s comments. All raters should be no more than one point away from all other raters’ scores. For example, it would be acceptable to have two 3s and a 2 given on the same criterion. If raters find that there is not a consensus on a criterion, they should discuss the reasons for their ratings and attempt to reach a consensus. The results of the interview and exercise may be combined at this point.