Case Study - Administrative Performance

Accounts Position

Overview

Harrison Assessments is an assessment instrument that is used for selection and development. It measures 130 different characteristics of an individual. In addition it formulates the requirements of a particular job and compares the individual to that job. It offers a final score between zero and one hundred which represents the degree of suitability of a person for a particular job. A score of one hundred represents a person who is completely suitable for a particular position, while a score of zero represents a person who is completely unsuitable for that position. Assuming the person is eligible for a position (has the education, experience and technical skills), a suitability score of 75 or greater represents a person who is considered likely to perform effectively in that position. A score of 74 or less represents a person who is considered to be unlikely to perform less effectively than average in that position. The data was collected by Dan Harrison (Ph.D.) and the performance rating were given by the company in 1995.

The aim of the case study below was to determine the degree of predictive accuracy of Harrison Assessments' for this position. This study included 31 subjects. This was achieved by comparing the Harrison Assessments' suitability score (using the Administration-accounts template) with the persons actual performance. The performance rating was given by a group of supervisors for each employee that competed the Harrison Assessments' profile.

Performance ratings

More than one company was involved. Each company was instructed to have a random sampling of employees from their company complete the Harrison Assessments' questionnaire (a range of excellent to poor performers). Each of those employees was then rated by the company according to their job performance. The following scale was used:

90-100
Excellent to Best - considering the amount of experience
80-89
Very Good - considering the amount of experience
70-79
Average to Good - considering the amount of experience
60-69
Below average - considering the amount of experience
40-59
Poor - considering the amount of experience
Below 40
Failed or will soon fail in the position

The companies were asked to provide this rating given the length of time the person had been in the position. This was to control the variable of the level to which the person had already established his/her market contacts. (see Appendix A - Performance guidelines). The lowest performance rating given by any of the companies was 50%.

Predictive accuracy

A prediction is considered accurate if one or more of the following conditions are met:

a) The suitability score is 75 or greater and the performance score is 75 or greater.

b) The suitability score is less than 75 and the performance score is less than 75.

c) The suitability score is within 6 points of the performance score.

The logic behind this definition is that, if the suitability score were 75 or above and the person were eligible for the position, it would indicate a prediction that the person would probably succeed in the position. If the suitability score were less than 75 and the person was moderately eligible (not highly eligible) for the position then this would indicate a prediction of below average performance. Also, if the suitability score were within 6 points of the performance score it would indicate a very close prediction and thus should also be considered accurate. The suitability score for each person appears on the template in the far right-hand column of the table.

From the research sample, 27 of the 31 employees (87%) showed a correlation between the Harrison Assessments' suitability score and performance to be accurate, according to the definition above.

The results show that the template developed is able to predict job success with a high level of accuracy. Although the sample size was small, the results correlated highly with previous research in this type of position.