360 for HR: 5 Reasons Assessment-Based Programs Are the Best Training and Development

By Linda Brenner | February 04, 2018

As you may know, 360° feedback is a process by which an individual seeks and receives job-relevant feedback from a variety of stakeholders - e.g., direct reports, peers, manager, internal clients, etc. - through a survey mechanism. The experience of 360° feedback is most relevant when the survey questions are specifically relevant to a person's role. Often, companies employ a general approach to 360° feedback by using a standard set of questions to measure all employees in a large category - individual contributors or leaders, for example.  What is less familiar to many are simulation-based training and development programs. Large companies often employ such methods to rapidly evaluate and develop the skills of those in key roles, such as general managers. They are very effective because they immerse participants in relevant challenges, unknown to them ahead of time. Participants then showcase their skills in key competencies such as making decisions, solving problems, managing data, etc.

How do such programs relate to training and development for HR and Recruiting professionals? While such programs provide useful feedback, it's often not specific enough to provide truly meaningful and actionable feedback for those in roles like HR Business Partner and Talent Acquisition professional.  That's why we believe that 360 assessment - and simulation-based training and development programs - should be built on competency models specifically for HR and recruiting.

There are five reasons why we believe simulation-based training programs and 360° feedback are essential to driving rapid individual development for HR and recruiting professionals:

1 - It helps HR and recruiting professionals model the art of receiving feedback.

Or, in other words, eat your own cooking. 360° feedback and simulation-based assessment programs help HR and TA professionals understand what's involved in the process - from logistics, to emotion, to understanding and acting on valuable feedback themes. For recruiters, it provides valuable training to help them effectively coach and influence hiring managers throughout the selection process.

2 - 360° feedback gives internal clients a way to voice their opinions about the support they get. Simulations allow objective observers the opportunity to evaluate the skills of HR and TA professionals.

HRBPs and recruiters, like many support teams, serve internal clients. And often, these internal clients have no structured, constructive way to give their opinion on what support they want, need or get. Understanding how we are perceived by others is a critical learning opportunity for HR - and the engine for driving self-directed development.

3 - Both allow HR and Talent Acquisition professionals to be held personally accountable for driving their own development.

Once feedback is received, the most important step is doing something with it. In order for HR professionals to be on point for coaching and developing business leaders and their teams (including recruiting professionals, who are responsible for coaching and developing hiring managers' skills), they have to do it for themselves. Otherwise, their support in such areas lacks credibility and seems disingenuous.

4 - HR-specific 360° feedback and simulation-based training and development programs drive continuous improvement for HR and recruiting professionals.

As business needs evolve and become more competitive and challenging, HR and TA professionals need to change, learn and adapt at the same pace. They need to regularly assess what actions add value and what distract from driving business results. HR-specific assessment programs and 360° feedback can act as a mechanism to feed such information in a data-based way to HR and TA teams.

5 - Both 360° feedback and assessment-based development programs provide HR and TA pros with data-based learning measurements.

Time and time again, we see HR and recruiting teams without clear role definition, key competencies or measures of success. And because of this, HR and recruiting professionals often struggle to focus on the right big issues and drive consistent value to their internal clients. Assessment programs and 360° feedback can provide a single set of data by which to hold these professionals engaged and accountable. For instance, 360° survey data rolled up can provide important insights to HR leaders about trends in areas of strengths and development needs. On an individual basis, 360° and assessment feedback can lead to measuring the amount, type, frequency, etc. of the specific actions taken by HR and TA professionals to drive continuous learning and improvement.


Want to learn more about our HR and recruiting competency models - and our assessment, training and development programs specifically for HR and recruiting professionals?

Drop us a note - and talk with a member of our team right away.

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