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Communication skills assessment: how to test them?

The communication skills assessment test is relevant not only on a personal level to control one’s abilities but also on...
23 June 2022

The communication skills assessment test is relevant not only on a personal level to control one’s abilities but also on an occupational level to stand out from other candidates, distinguish potential leaders, or facilitate optimal and fluid work environments.

If you are interested in going deeper into this topic and knowing what it is and how to test them, we advise you to read on to the end.

What is a communication skills assessment test?

The communication skills test is a competency and skills assessment test that seeks to certify comprehension and speed of language processing and the ability to give appropriate responses in a language.  

On the operational level, the communication skills test measures the interviewee’s linguistic competence, non-verbal etiquette, and cultural appropriateness.

An excellent way to make an initial assessment of a candidate’s communication skills is to analyze how well they capture the information in the test in terms of: 

  • Is it written correctly? Does it contain spelling or grammatical errors? 
  • Is it legible, and is it understandable?
  • How is it structured? Does it follow a logical and progressive order?

What is a communication skills assessment for?

Determining the communication skills of a candidate or employee through a test serves different purposes and can be approached from different angles

A precise and focused wording to cover these predefined purposes will mean a better segmentation of potential candidates or more accurate information about the employees.

Let’s take a closer look. 

Communication skills assessment: how to test them

In the relationship between companies and employees

As far as the relationship between companies and employees is concerned, the communication skills assessment (also known as interpersonal skills test) is used to:

  • Strengthen teamwork by developing a more effective relationship among professionals based on better interactions and greater coordination and understanding among them.
  • Enhance critical thinking oriented to results.
  • Develop potential problem-solving scenarios.
  • Encourage active listening at all levels.
  • Reduce management time in everyday tasks as there is no room for wasted time due to misinterpretations. What the sender transmits is what the interlocutor puts into practice.
  • To perfect the communicative processes. Only the necessary information is transmitted, but in its entirety, so as not to generate information gaps.
  • Optimize the resources of the personnel department, which does not have to act as a mediator in possible conflicts.
  • Increase job satisfaction, employee commitment, and productivity.
  • Strengthen customer relations and, therefore, better service.
  • Improve the company’s performance expectations and the objectives to be met.

In the relationship between the recruiting companies or agencies and the candidates

As far as the relationship between companies or recruiting agencies and candidates is concerned, the communication skills test helps: 

  • To measure the candidate’s linguistic competence to assess if they reach the minimum requirements.
  • Analyze their communicative ability in different scenarios in professional and social contexts. The aim is to see how candidates handle themselves in the field once their theoretical knowledge has been verified.
  • Assess their level and ability in writing, reading, grammar, pronunciation, and speaking. To ensure that the skills you claim to have are fundamental and can be evidenced.

Communication between companies and employees

What are the 7 communication skills known as 7 C’s?

Effective communication means making sure that the receiver gets the message. Clear and effective company communication increases productivity: e-mails, conference calls, reports, discussions… And so on, a long list goes on.

To improve company communication, there are the Seven Cs, a theory that Scott Cutlip and Allen Center proposed, two critical researchers from the United States, establishing fundamental elements for a message to be delivered successfully. 

According to the seven Cs, communication must be:

  • Clear.
  • Concise.
  • Concrete.
  • Correct.
  • Coherent.
  • Complete.
  • Courteous.

How to test communication skills?

Basic communication skills, also called basic communication competencies, are based on the following pillars, which are very useful for testing communication skills in an interview, for example:

Active listening

Simple gestures such as nodding your head when someone is communicating actively denote that you are paying attention. Other gestures in the same vein are to make brief comments about what is being discussed without interrupting the communication.  

Assertiveness

It is about being able to communicate something relevant appropriately and respectfully, seeking to inform without hurting. It has to be fulfilled, especially if the message is not pleasant.

Empathy

Empathy is the ability to show someone that you can understand what they are transmitting to you from an affective point of view. 

It is colloquially called “putting yourself in someone else’s shoes.”

Eye contact

Maintaining eye contact with each other when speaking builds trust and demonstrates interest in what is being communicated. 

Assertiveness and eye contact are basic communication skills.

Theory of mind

It consists of the ability to know the thoughts and intentions of the person you are communicating with.

Emotion-message consistency

To achieve this, it is necessary to communicate what is said in a way that is coordinated with the way it is done through gestures, active postures, eye contact, or voice modulation.   

Negotiation skills

It is based on developing a dialogue based on respect and common points without rejecting non-common moments in a hostile or disrespectful manner.

Control of the situation

In conversations that provoke insecurity or nervousness, the ideal is to abandon the passive posture and opt for an active one in which you ask questions or show interest in what the other person is communicating.

Measured use of humor

Using humor is a crutch to relax the tension and promote open communications. It is a matter of creating complicity without going overboard and erring on the side of informality or unnecessary collegiality.

Non-verbal language control

Defensive postures can signal an apparent lack of communication skills. 

Keeping your arms crossed over your chest, looking tense, turning your back, or leaning slightly away from the speaker are clear signs of incorrect verbal language. 

Natural exposition and not memorization of ideas

Demonstrating that you have communication skills implies that you know how to develop fluid, natural conversations and do not resort to canned speech and the repository of prefabricated ideas.

The digital transformation many companies face entails the need to articulate new control systems that allow them to ensure that the processes are carried out under assumptions of total honesty and respecting security premises.

About these needs, Smowltech offers a remote monitoring service for personnel selection and recruitment processes carried out in companies, both for new incorporations and for the promotion of existing human capital. 

To know the full scope of this service, we encourage you to request a free demo with no obligation on your part.

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