How to effectively measure and grow your Employees’ ability to Multi-task

How do you effectively measure your employees’ ability to multi-task at work? We often see new candidates and existing employees say that they can multi-task, but is there really an effective way for us to gauge this skill?

Multi-tasking is the ability of an individual to process information quickly and manage several tasks simultaneously. While multi-tasking has been argued to have negative effects in some professions, we cannot deny its benefits especially with occupations that require completion of multiple tasks that can overlap each other. These occupations are commonly found in entry level positions such as Administrative / Marketing Assistants, various Customer Service roles, Coordinators and Executive Secretaries.

Understanding what’s involved in Multi-Tasking

These are some of the common tasks involved-

  • Ability to ask questions, listen, gather and document information
  • Access multiple systems such as email, websites and other essential software tools to resolve inquiries
  • Works efficiently in order to complete pending urgent tasks without compromising quality of work

This skill can primarily determine how successful a candidate can perform their role. For example, to carry out a Customer Service role, it requires an employee who can do fast task-switching since they will need to simultaneously carry two to three tasks at a time. The employee should be able to document & research the customer’s concern while he or she communicates with the customer. Not being able to multi-task effectively causes longer interaction times and can also cause frustration for customers.

Multi-tasking can benefit Organizations

Employees who are good at multi-tasking are often given different tasks that requires high level of independence. There are also other performance metrics that employers can look for in order to gauge how successful their teams are in carrying out their roles which includes Customer Satisfaction, Productivity, Quality of Work and can even increase Employee Retention.

Measuring multi-tasking abilities would require an objective approach to effectively identify how an individual can handle a multitude of daily tasks. We cannot simply take their word for it and rely on their past work experiences alone. Using customized assessments that are highly objective so we can capture behavioral and situational responses is one way to better gauge your candidates and employees ability to multi-task.

Start measuring your employees ability to task so you can have a benchmark on where to you can start to improve your organization’s performance metrics. To learn more on how you can deploy an assessment for ‘multi-tasking’ & other essential skills, you may speak with one of our Assessment Consultants.

Author: Patricia Acepcion

Managing Director of The Philippine TalentMap Initiative

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