I am in the process of hiring a new administrative assistant. Because the market is a bit soft, and the pay is pretty good for the area, I have over forty applicants. I have decided to screen them based on four principle criteria, and while none stand out, there are a hadful that rank above the rest.
When I invite them to interview, I would like them to take a brief test to help evaluate their skills. I want to evaluate:
- Writing Abilities: The employee will write minutes, reports and general business correspondence. If very good, I will also have the person doing some PR, like press releases, web copy, etc.
- Microsoft Word: At a minimum, I need somebody who can do more than just type in Microsoft Word. Page layout, importing graphics, setting up tables, etc. is fundemental to the job.
- Microsoft Excel: When it comes to Excel, I have set up a loan tracking workbook with amortization schedules, payment logs, monthly and annual reports, etc., with complex formulas and multiple links between pages. I need somebody who can at least follow along and understand the relationships between pages and cells.
- Accounting: The person needs to have a basic understanding of accounting in order to process loans, maintain our books, pay bills, etc.
So here is my question of the Throbbing Brain. Does anybody have ideas of questions I can ask, or testing techniques, that would help me to assess these skills? Are there similar tests administered by your employer?