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5 Benefits of Online Skill Assessments for Campus Recruiting

June 3, 2024

campus recruitment

What comes to your mind when you think of campus recruitment?

Is it the hopes and dreams of bright-eyed young graduates on the brink of a new career? Or is it the business requirements that need fresh recruits to diversify their workforce and scale the business to greater heights?

Chances are that if you are a recruiter, you would think of a successful union of both.

While the benefits of campus recruiting are widely known, they come with challenges.

These include managing high volumes of applications, short durations to participate in placement drives and roll-out offers, standardizing the hiring process to adapt to each college’s requirements, and traveling and logistics for colleges in different locations around the same time.

How online skill assessments enhance campus recruiting

Campus recruiters must maximize the outcomes from campus hiring as efficiently as possible with limited time and budgets. Most college recruitment drives involve tests to assess students' aptitude and technical skills. Half the battle is won if shortlisting the top students from a large pool of applicants is automated. 

Using online skill assessment tools to filter students' results in faster, easier, and more bias-free hiring.

Graphic presentation of survey results across 10 companies that used skill assessments for campus recruiting.

Source: Equip

By embracing skill assessments for campus recruiting, companies are experiencing a surge in efficiency, a wider talent pool, and significant cost reductions. Here's a closer look at the transformative impact:

  • A 60% increase in the number of colleges reached: The broader reach allows employers to cast a wider net to hire from multidisciplinary institutes without geographical restrictions.
  • A 33% increase in talent pool: An increase in the diversity and volume of candidates provides employers with more to choose from, increasing the chances of improving the quality of hire and finding a better match for the company’s culture.
  • A 66% decrease in the number of people required for campus hiring: This means lower operational costs, which frees up HR resources into more strategic tasks than logistics.
  • About 83% time saved: This benefits both employers and candidates—employers by reducing the time to hire and candidates by the time they have to wait to secure the job.

Conducting skill assessments, particularly using an online tool to administer them, has several advantages to help hire faster and filter skilled students, as outlined below.

1. Recruitment skills assessment saves time spent on CVs

College students typically do not have much work experience, so CVs are not the best criteria for evaluating freshers. The next best thing they can do to showcase their capabilities is to list their grades on their resume.

However, grades do not reflect real-world employability. Also, reading each CV is virtually impossible for large-scale campus hiring drives involving thousands of students.

Besides, CVs are highly subjective and easy to exaggerate. Who amongst us didn’t think we were awesome at a particular skill until we went out into the real world? Even if you were to judge by grades, different colleges have wildly different standards.

Skill assessments give an objective evaluation of candidates’ skills. A programming test with a real-world question is far more effective at judging a student’s coding skills than their grades. 

Moreover, the test results will help you objectively rank candidates and shortlist the top performers. Thus, moving away from CVs saves time and improves the quality of students shortlisted for interviews. 

2. Skill-based campus hiring benefits all

Recruiters are five times more likely to search for candidates by skills on LinkedIn than by college degrees. Skill assessments offer unique advantages to both employers and students. They allow candidates to showcase their skills based on their abilities, irrespective of their academic background. For example, a student majoring in Economics may be a self-taught graphic designer.

With so many students upskilling themselves with online learning, requiring college degrees for jobs means you are losing out on great talent. Arguably, someone who has learned a skill on their own is more motivated at the skill than someone who does it as part of a degree! 

Also, when you hire for skills, you are able to hire for niche roles such as cybersecurity, virtual reality, and digital marketing much better. In fact, hiring for skills is twice as predictive of job performance than hiring for work experience.

Skill-based hiring can also lead to a more diverse workforce wherein multi-skilled candidates can weigh in with their expertise while collaborating with other teams.

3. Higher retention rates of skill-based campus hires

Skill-based hires have a trickle-down effect. Candidates hired for skills tend to exhibit a higher commitment to the job and earn promotions faster, thus encouraging them to stay longer.

Higher retention rates decrease the cost of hiring new employees, increase team productivity, and foster a positive work environment. By saving on the cost of hiring, the budget can be reallocated to benefit existing employees, thus further increasing employee retention. 

Seasoned employees who take on mentorship roles for new employees boost productivity, increase team morale, and largely benefit the entire business. A longer median tenure of employees at a company signals good employee well being, benefits, and career growth prospects. 

Thus, higher retention rates of skill-based hires create a positive flywheel effect in more areas than one. 

4. Automatic grading and results of campus recruitment tests

The higher the number of candidates, the greater the time and effort involved in grading the answers for tests. If you are hiring developers, imagine the tech hiring team having to look at every candidate’s code submission.

Or if you are hiring for sales, imagine scheduling phone call interviews with several hundreds of students. This is a huge bottleneck in the entire campus hiring process. 

When grading and results are automated, the time to hire is reduced manifold. Even a small team at a startup can easily conduct campus drives when evaluations are automated. 

Most skill assessment platforms provide automatic grading and multiple test types for quicker, well-rounded results. Automated grading systems make the process extremely scalable and eliminate bias due to their objectivity.

5. Fair practices to evaluate candidates

Colleges typically have a campus recruitment season, during which most students apply for on-campus jobs. So, many students attempt the tests simultaneously. Arranging for invigilators to conduct the tests and accessing college resources such as labs and lecture halls can be a hassle. 

Online skill assessment providers usually provide proctoring features that prevent students from cheating while taking the test. They can track the students’ test-taking environment using the screen, camera, and microphone of the device used to attempt the test. 

Additionally, it allows the students to take the assessment from the comfort of their dormitories or anywhere remotely. Students are less likely to cheat when they know they are being proctored, and the prevention of malpractice ensures fair evaluation of all students.

Potential drawbacks of online skill assessments

Students are used to taking multiple exams periodically as a part of their coursework in colleges and universities. But when the stakes are high, some of them might underperform due to exam anxiety.

Skill assessments are great for assessing technical skills, but a different process might be better suited to evaluate behavioral traits and cultural fit. While some skill assessments provide soft skills evaluation, they may not be the correct indicator for the soft skills exhibited by the individual in complex, real-world work environments.

While conducting skill assessments, ensure that the tests don’t disadvantage students with special needs. Allow room for modifications to the standard process so your system is inclusive. 

By being aware of these drawbacks, recruiters can strategically use online skill assessments along with other evaluation methods to get a complete picture of a candidate's potential.

Skill assessments are your best bet for campus recruiting

Skill assessments not only improve the quality of hires but also increase retention rates. They standardize the process for the recruiter and the candidate. 

Most importantly, they are very scalable and, once set up, can be reused in multiple colleges — even across years!

Take your talent acquisition strategy to the next level by scoring the best talent through on-campus recruiting.

Edited by Jigmee Bhutia


Technical skills screening software
Find the perfect fit!

Streamline hiring by using technical skills screening software to identify the perfect candidate, saving you time and strengthening your team.

Technical skills screening software
Find the perfect fit!

Streamline hiring by using technical skills screening software to identify the perfect candidate, saving you time and strengthening your team.

5 Benefits of Online Skill Assessments for Campus Recruiting Discover the benefits of skill assessments for campus recruitment. Learn how to hire based on students’ skills without spending time sorting through CVs.
Aishwarya Lohi Aishwarya, a product marketer at Equip, drives growth and engagement. With a knack for experimentation, captivating content creation, and meeting customer needs, she has experience in analyzing competitors and delivering exceptional results. Beyond marketing, she has also worked in education.

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