Tips For Success: Successful Assessor Training
Life as an assessor can seem like a challenge, especially if you are new to this role.
Before you send your assessors out into the field, you need to make sure that they have the best chance of success.
So what do you need to consider?
Firstly, lets take stock of what we want to achieve.
An organisation’s competency system works well when the assessors really do understand the assessment process and they have the confidence to assess people.
To succeed, your assessors need to understand the role of the assessor, the assessment process and how to judge whether someone is competent. They need to understand that they are not acting in anyone’s interest if they sign people off when they are not yet competent.
And just as importantly, your assessors need to know how to record evidence.
Here we will look briefly at the main areas to help you get your assessor training right and your competency management system implemented effectively.
In training your assessors, you need to make sure that the training is centred on your own assessment process. The best way to do this is to build your own organisation’s assessment paperwork and process into the training.
Like any training, making the training as practical as possible will help your assessors understand what assessment is all about. It will also help your assessors feel more confident to start assessing once back in their workplace.
Giving feedback can be tough, especially for less experienced assessors, and by covering this area you will enable them to deal with the most difficult situations when they get back to their workplace. Do not assume that your assessors know how to give feedback or are comfortable with difficult conversations.
Consider a practical assignment for assessors to complete back at the workplace. Asking your assessors to assess two people, using your paperwork and writing a short report on what worked is a good way to help transfer the learning back to the workplace.
Assessor guidelines are a simple and effective tool that you can put in place for your assessors to use after their training. The goal is to provide a guide to your assessors on what you expect them to do, how to do this and when.
What about qualification options and delivery methods?
There are a number of accredited and non-accredited options for you to consider, if you need a qualification for the assessors. The SQA assessor and OPITO assessor awards are both options. You are best to check what is required by your clients or your industry bodies.
If you do not require accreditation, you can consider providing training only or training followed by an in-house assignment to check the competence of your assessors. In our experience, it is very important to build in some form of review process once the initial assessor training is completed.
It is all about buy-in
The success of your organisation’s competency management system is very dependent on the degree that your assessors buy in, firstly, to your competency management system and secondly, to what is required of them in their role as assessors.
So whatever approach you adopt, it will be important that you are clear in your communications with your assessors, that your assessors understand the importance of their role and that you support your assessors after their training.
Good luck with your assessor training and please get in touch if you need any help.