There’s a certain word that we keep seeing crop up in our work so far on Collaborate, and that word is ‘gap’. It might be a piece about a skills gap, or something to do with bridging the gap, or perhaps identifying the gap, but every time the same key word, ‘gap’ appears. In fact we’ve decided to include it in our interviews now, as although there is a risk of that inclusion colouring the answer, we feel it’s too important an issue to risk leaving out. We feel it’s better to prompt the interviee to encourage them to reflect on the idea, so that we can have a more informative dialogue about the issue itself.
You can see the result of just such a prompt here, in our interview with Steve Gaskin, Employability and Professional Development Manager:
Interestingly Steve touches on something else in this short piece, which is also beginning to emerge as a key issue – that this gap is more than just a simple gap in ‘traditional’ employability skills, that it goes some way beyond this, to something so far intangible.
And we’re not the only ones to think so, a recent article first published in the Guardian Work supplement for example,” Work: The games they make you play“, also highlighted this fact, observing that “Organisations also are eager to find systems that reveal more about a candidate’s character and on-the-job potential, rather than relying too much on formal credentials that may have little bearing on career success”.
In fact that article has independently corroborated a number of issues that have emerged since, such as the value of simulations, and also the slightly counter intuitive notion of assessments without the formal description of exactly how marks are allocated. An assessment whereby it’s actually part of that very same assessment to decide independently just what the criteria are that you are being measured against. Wonderfully illustrated in the article by the programmer who was snapped up by Facebook, who in his test pointed out that the test itself was actually in need of reworking!
All food for thought as we progress through our baselining, and start to think about the possibilities for assessment re-design.