10 Useful Tips for Assessing Communication Skills

Effective communication is the backbone of any successful organization. And it’s no wonder that recruiters and hiring managers often put communication skills at the top of their list of requirements when scouting for new talent.

However, assessing communication skills can be challenging, especially since it’s a multi-faceted skill that encompasses various domains such as language proficiency, clarity, and cultural awareness. 

 In this blog post, we’ll share ten useful tips for assessing communication skills that can help you evaluate candidates efficiently and effectively.

  • Tip 1: Check for global comprehensibility
  • Tip 2: Assess their range and control of vocabulary
  • Tip 3: Assess for grammatical accuracy
  • Tip 4: Check for clarity
  • Tip 5: Check for coherence
  • Tip 6: Assess their ability to pick up social cues
  • Tip 7: Look for their ability to interact
  • Tip 8: Check for repair skills
  • Tip 9: Check for adaptability
  • Tip 10: Evaluate solutioning skills

Tip 1: Check for global comprehensibility

Today’s workforce is more diverse than ever before. Companies are operating on a global scale, interacting with clients, customers, and colleagues from various cultural backgrounds.

That’s why it’s crucial to hire candidates with excellent pronunciation or the ability to articulate words and sounds in combination with the right use of intonation, stress, and pacing.

While assessing pronunciation, it is important to evaluate whether the candidate’s speech is intelligible and whether their pronunciation aligns with commonly accepted standards. A candidate who demonstrates an ability to pronounce words accurately, regardless of their accent, is more likely to facilitate effective communication across cultures.

Tip 2: Assess their range and control of vocabulary

Strong vocabulary is also essential for effective communication. Candidates who don’t have the right words to express themselves may struggle to interact with colleagues, managers, and clients.

To assess vocabulary, pay attention to both range and control.  A wide-ranging vocabulary empowers individuals to use the most appropriate words to convey their intended meaning. Whereas, a good control of vocabulary helps individuals convey their ideas more precisely,

The most important thing is to look out for candidates who can use words effectively in different contexts and adjust their language to suit various situations. 

Afterall, possessing a strong vocabulary is all about using the right words in the right way.

Tip 3: Assess for grammatical accuracy

Grammar is another essential aspect of effective communication. It helps people convey ideas accurately and ensures clarity in our language

To assess grammatical accuracy, pay attention to candidates’ sentence construction, verb tense usage, word order, and other grammar elements to ensure that their communication is free from errors.

Tip 4: Check for clarity

While language proficiency is crucial, communication is not just about speaking or writing fluently. It’s also about conveying ideas and information clearly and concisely, so that the message is understood by others without confusion or ambiguity. 

By checking for clarity, you can identify individuals who can effectively convey their ideas and information without confusion or misinterpretation.

Tip 5: Check for coherence

In connection with clarity, you also need to check for coherence. Coherence is the ability to present information logically and coherently. 

When evaluating for coherence, pay attention to how candidates’ structure their sentences and organize their ideas. Clear communicators demonstrate logical thinking and present information in a coherent manner. They use appropriate transitions to connect thoughts, provide examples or evidence to support their points, and express complex concepts in a way that is accessible to their audience.

Tip 6: Check for social perceptiveness

Social perceptiveness is an important aspect of communication, particularly in the workplace. It involves being attuned to the subtle signals that others convey through one’s tone, choice of words, or  non-verbal signals like sighs and silence. 

So, how can you assess a candidate’s social perceptiveness? Observe how the candidate responds to social cues from others. Do they adjust their communication style based on the cues they receive? Are they able to sense when someone is uncomfortable or needs clarification? Can they pick up on subtle cultural cues like use of sarcasm or humor? 

Candidates who are socially perceptive will demonstrate empathy, active listening, and the ability to adapt their communication.

Tip 7: Check for interactive skills

Communication is a two-way street, and candidates must be able to actively listen and engage in conversations.

When assessing a candidate’s interactive skills, pay attention to how they actively listen and respond. Do they ask thoughtful questions to gain deeper insights? Are they genuinely interested in what others have to say? These behaviors indicate their ability to engage in meaningful dialogue and demonstrate their interest in understanding different perspectives.

By checking for interactive skills, you can identify candidates who actively listen, ask questions, provide meaningful feedback, and demonstrate genuine interest in others’ perspectives.

Tip 8: Check for repair skills

Inevitably, there will be times when communication breaks down. What matters is how candidates handle these situations.

Observe how they react when they face a communication breakdown, such as misunderstandings, confusing instructions, or conflict. Do they become flustered or defensive, or do they remain calm and composed? Do they actively ask questions to gain clarity or make assumptions without seeking further information? 

 Do they ask for clarification or attempt to make sense of the information independently? 

Remember, candidates who maintain their composure in the face of challenges are more likely to handle difficult situations with professionalism and level-headedness.

Tip 9: Check for adaptability

Effective communication also involves adapting your language  to different audiences. 

To check for adaptability, observe whether candidates can modify their communication style depending on the situation. When discussing technical topics, are they able to simplify complex information without oversimplifying it? Do they maintain a professional and respectful tone regardless of the situation? Do they understand and respect cultural differences and alter their approach?

By assessing this adaptability, you can identify individuals who are adept at tailoring their communication for successful interactions with diverse stakeholders in the workplace.

Tip 10: Evaluate solutioning skills

Finally, you need to evaluate solutioning skills. 

In the workplace, not all issues are explicitly stated or obvious. Sometimes, there are underlying concerns, unspoken tensions, or subtle challenges that require perceptive communication to identify and address. 

When assessing solutioning skills, pay attention to how candidates approach problem-solving. Do they actively seek to understand the root causes of a problem and explore alternative solutions? Are they able to ask probing questions to uncover hidden challenges?  Do they demonstrate the capacity to evaluate different options and consider the potential outcomes?

Candidates who possess strong solutioning skills can navigate through these  and find effective resolutions.

In Summary:

By testing communication skills such as global comprehensibility, vocabulary, grammar, clarity, coherence, social perceptiveness, interactive skills, repair skills, adaptability, and solutioning skills, you can now more effectively identify candidates who excel in communication. 

However, did you know that these skills cannot be accurately assessed by computer alone? 

While technology has advanced in many areas, evaluating nuanced aspects of communication requires human judgment and understanding. Factors such as tone, non-verbal language, and the ability to read social cues are difficult for machines to accurately interpret. Human interaction and observation remain essential for truly assessing communication skills. 

At BUPLAS, we understand the importance of this human touch. That’s why we have developed a comprehensive recruitment solution that combines cutting-edge technology with human expertise to accurately assess the communication skills of your workforce. 

Request a demo today to see our communication assessments in action and discover how our unique approach can revolutionize your hiring process.

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