Since the beginning of the 20th century the business landscape has shifted from being predominantly manufacturing and agriculture driven, to mainly service driven. As such, cognition has become a far more critical component of successful work performance.
Even manufacturing processes have become more complex in the past 100 years or so, requiring higher levels of cognition. This, in turn, has stimulated the need for effective cognitive tests that are specific to the industrial, business and organisational context.
Typical intelligence measurement tools include verbal, numeric, deductive, fine motor, visual-spatial, memory, mechanical and hand-eye coordination components, among others. Newer forms of intelligence such as EQ and spiritual intelligence can also be measured.
But does that mean that these types of intelligence are equally important in the new world of work? Visual-spatial reasoning (pattern and figure manipulation), which features in many cognitive tests, may be important for roles on the factory floor – or for a draughtsman, pilot or truck driver – but to an individual in a white-collar environment, these intelligence constructs are generally less important.
These modern-day considerations require an assessment system that taps in to the cognitive processes that are relevant and applicable within the realities of a business.
The Evalex solution
Evalex offers three solutions to the assessment of cognitive functioning: the Business Comprehension Test (BCT), the Organisation Insight Scale (OIS) and the Decision Effectiveness management simulation.
We developed the BCT to contextualise cognitive functioning or intelligence for the modern world of work. In developing the test we studied the types of intelligence that are most prevalent in the workplace, and how each of these types of intelligence correlates with performance and job level.
We then identified five cognitive processes within the realm of intelligence, which we believe are critical for success in the modern world of work, namely:
- Abstract/verbal reasoning
- Deductive reasoning
- Numeric reasoning
- Maturity: assimilated understanding
- Judgment: contextual reasoning
The BCT combines these constructs into one test battery that can be completed online in approximately one hour.
Averaging the scores of employees functioning successfully at different levels of work over a period of time shows that each successive level of work, from levels 1 to 6, achieves an ever-increasing score on the BCT.
Using data from BCT tests we have been able to establish benchmarks, which means an individual’s score on the BCT can be used as a predictive tool to match him/her to a particular work level.
The BCT has over 45 000 individuals in the database from more than 1 500 organisations in 30+ countries, covering work levels 1 to 6.
OIS is a questionnaire that assesses business acumen across eight aspects of business organisation, including marketing, sales, human resources, technology and operations.
The Decision Effectiveness assessment is based on the premise that the decisions we make and the processes we follow to investigate problems serve to reduce data to logical conclusions. The judgement of chosen solutions are key to individual career success and organisational success.
Drawing on the Nobel Prize-winning cognitive theories of Daniel Kanemann, Decision Effectiveness is a leadership simulation that is software guided. The manager or leader actually interfaces with an avatar throughout the test. Its design draws on digital response theory and artificial intelligence, both ground-breaking approaches in the assessment of leadership competencies.