• Vasu K Saksena is Chief Executive Officer, MeritTrac Services, India’s largest testing and assessment services company in the private sector which provides innovative assessment services to leading educational institutions, government organisations and corporate entities. In an interview with People and Management, he shares his views on the importance of test & assessments of candidates for organizations and vision, objective and future plans of MeritTrac. Excerpts:

What is the vision and objective of MeritTrac Services?

MeritTrac was set up with the goal of enhancing employable talent pool in the country through effective skill assessment. For the last 13 years, we have been accomplishing this and supporting leading organisations assess candidates for their skills, knowledge and personality. We believe in offering complete support - design, development and delivery of assessments that have been guiding them in making sound hiring and progression decisions.

Why do organisations use Tests & Assessments?

A test or examination is an assessment intended to measure a test-taker's ability, knowledge, skill and personality to perform in a job or be eligible for admission into a course. In a recruitment scenario, a test is a necessary filter that helps organisations to zero down on fewer profiles that can be interviewed before selection. A scientifically designed test will clearly indicate if a person would fit a specific role based on his or her knowledge/abilities and personality. In its absence, organisation will have to interview large number of candidates for each position they hire. Today a good quality assessment brings down that number to one-tenth or less. Moreover, a well-designed assessment will provide very important inputs about the candidate that can be quizzed further by the interviewer. This information would not have been available without these tests.

How is MeritTrac unique in this space that is evolving?

MeritTrac has been in the testing and assessment space for the last 13 years. We offer services for all assessment requirements in the computer base or paper-based format. We have the largest spread of assessments – Abilities, Domain Knowledge, Communication Skills and Personality & Behaviour. In areas where we have not built assessments, we have partnered the best in the world to offer next generation assessments – contextualised to Indian environment. Our business is focussed ONLY on testing and assessments and do not indulge in any conflicting business (database/sourcing, placements or training) which could dilute our tests.

Do you have international partnerships? What kind of assessments do you offer through them?

In our efforts to offer quality, we have built best in class assessments that are being used by corporates. In specific areas, we have enhanced our portfolio by partnering with experts. For example, SpeechTrac – our spoken English assessment solution that is being widely used by BPOs in India and abroad is built in partnership with Carnegie Speech, a company incubated in Carnegie Mellon University. The tool has been tuned to assess non-native speakers of English in order to make it relevant for Indian audience. Similarly, we have partnered First Advantage and have been using validated assessments that address specific recruitment and development needs. These tests used in conjunction with MeritTrac’s tests provide HRs holistic feedback about candidates.

These partnerships have been helping us be loyal to our cause of offering the best solutions to our customers. We will continue to build new tests and delivery models while keeping our eyes open to global trends and partnerships.

What is the value you offer that your customers have appreciated?

Our ability to Design and Develop tests that assess the necessary attributes required to succeed in job is appreciated by corporates. These assessments have helped them select candidates who stay productive for longer in job. The number of customers retained by us is the testimony to this fact. We have a strong delivery engine that allows corporates to reach the talent pool across country – which is a requirement for most of the organisations today. Since inception, technology and innovation has been in our DNA. This has helped us introduce numerous path-breaking solutions in the industry like CampusNxt, SpeechTrac and Performance-based Tests. Above all, our customers have maintained that one of the biggest comforts we have offered is that we have not entered into conflicting businesses like sourcing candidates. This has given them the confidence that our tests measure what it is supposed to measure – abilities, skills and personality – resulting in better fitment.

Can you share future growth plans of MeritTrac?

The last few years have been exciting for us. We have grown as a company by digging deeper in the existing markets through new solutions. We have introduced a suite of assessments in the campus recruitment and personality & behavioural assessment space. Our dedicated test R&D and innovations team is creating new assessments and delivery mechanisms to enhance quality and convenience of assessments.

We have also been addressing new industries and geographies and some of the most known organisations, including the ones from international education and testing markets, are showing faith in our ability to deliver tests in India and abroad. We have invested in enhancing our capability in test development and delivery and will continue to do so in future.

 

Vasu K Saksena, Chief Executive Officer, MeritTrac Services

People and Management

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