The power of examinations in a corporate environment

The power of examinations in a corporate environment

Why should you hold examinations in organisations? All it does is distract employees and make them nervous. And what do the results say anyway? Nevertheless, holding examinations within a corporate environment can be very useful. You gain clearer insight into the strengths of employees and can put them to even better use.

In education, examinations are used so that students are not dependent on a single measurement moment and can see in between how ‘they stand’. In the business world, the reverse seems to be the case: training and development are more central than the (final) examination. This is actually logical, because the employee has already proven his usefulness, there is no longer any need to decide whether someone has sufficient knowledge and skills. Or perhaps there is?


Below you will find some of the advantages of holding examinations within a corporate environment.

  1. Insight into the efficiency of education or training;
  2. Certification of employees;
  3. Well-founded decisions about career opportunities;
  4. Preventing risks and claims;
  5. Demonstrating the quality of services.
  6. Increasing the motivation of employees;
  7. Insight into basic requirements;
  8. Assessing the competencies of professionals;
  9. Conclusion.

1. Insight into the efficiency of education or training

There are many different ways to assess the return on investment of education or training. Testing is one of them. If the learning objectives are clear, a measurement can take stock of the extent to which these learning objectives have actually been achieved.

2. Certification of employees

There are many large organisations with their own corporate academy. This is very valuable and contributes to the development of employees.

But does this academy also have value outside the company? Employees like to think ahead and therefore also want to know what they can gain from their training in a possible new job. Certification can then have added value for a subsequent career outside the company. If you want to meet this wish of employees, it may be worthwhile to have examinations taken by an external (independent) party and thus to certify employees in a recognisable and broad way.

3. Well-founded decisions about career opportunities

Numerous decisions are made within an organisation about the possible promotion of employees. Put simply, there are four ways to deal with this:

  1. Subjectively, on the basis of proven performance and good reviews.
  2. Through a talent assessment. This provides insight into the (social) competencies and career opportunities of the employee.
  3. Through training (without testing). This does not guarantee actual command of the subject material.
  4. By training in combination with testing. You measure the knowledge and concrete skills that the employee already possesses and put them in the context of the current employer and the future position. Failure to succeed in the (higher) position can have major consequences. By including tests in your training programme, you can to a large extent prevent these consequences.

4. Preventing risks and claims

The government sets legal requirements for performing certain activities. Think, for example, of giving financial advice. According to the Dutch Financial Supervision Act, this is only reserved for professionals who are authorised to do so. This means that they have passed the necessary exams and obtained diplomas.

However, the government does not always regulate everything. Think of quality marks and associated quality assessment and examination, where companies may decide to take care of this themselves.

Particularly where there are risks involved that could possibly lead to claims, examination is certainly relevant. An example of this is the Dutch VCA certificate that stands for Safety, Health and Environment Checklist Contractors (SCC). This certificate is not compulsory, but it is requested in the sector. The VCA certificate demonstrates that the requirements of working conditions legislation are met.

5. Demonstrating the quality of services

With a quality mark you demonstrate the quality of service. The combination with examinations and/or certification reinforces this effect.

Take, for example, a funeral home. While funeral director is an independent profession, the quality of service is very important, even precarious. Then it is not surprising that the sector in question has recently provided a quality mark and certification, consisting of theoretical and practical testing.

6. Increasing the motivation of employees

For many, a training course without a test is without obligation. Digital testing can provide increased motivation, focus and a sense of recognition. And a good result is something to be proud of.

The power of examinations in a corporate environment

7. Insight into basic requirements

Perhaps the most obvious reason to test is to want to know whether one simply meets certain requirements. Is everyone sufficiently digitally literate? Does everyone have sufficient knowledge of the requirements we set for customer-oriented action? Are employees aware of the guidelines for compliance? Such questions usually arise after the use of corporate learning programmes and e-learning and can be answered through testing.

8. Assessing the competencies of professionals

Many self-employed people feel the need to constantly demonstrate their distinctiveness and added value. What makes them better than their (many) competitors? Of course, diplomas, quality marks and registrations can help in this. Think, for example, of a registration as a mediator, psychologist or divorce specialist. Testing can also make a difference.

A fixed training requirement is often required for entry in the register. Testing offers a different way of demonstrating that someone meets the set requirements. This is useful for ‘lateral entrants’ and others who have not followed the standard path.


Despite the doubts surrounding testing and the fact that companies undervalue assessments, there are a number of clear reasons for investing in examination. Are you open to it? If you invest in the quality and relevance of testing, you will discover more and more reasons to test.

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