For greater success, start your job search with an interest assessment

interest assessmentAt Jails to Jobs we often talk to people who are coming out of prison or jail and are not sure what kind of work they’d like to do. Finding a job that matches a person’s interests may also be a challenge for those who are now unemployed because of COVID-19. Some of their employers have gone out of business, and those people forced to look for jobs may want to explore something new. But maybe they’re not sure what that “something new” might be. And maybe that’s the case for you too.

A good place to start is to take one – or several – of the online free interest assessment evaluations. They’re easy and don’t take too long to complete. They also can provide some excellent ideas for possible types of jobs that those looking for employment might want to consider.

Examples of free career assessment evaluations

CareerOneStop Interest Assessment – This evaluation can be completed in 10 or 15 minutes and requires answering 30 questions related to what activities that people might do as part of their jobs. You indicate in the boxes below the activities how much you would enjoy or not enjoy doing each one. The Interest Assessment compiles a profile of your interests and determines the types of jobs most likely to match those interests.

The next step is to explore those jobs and learn what sort of education is needed to perform them, the median wage for each type of job and the outlook. In other words, what sorts of opportunities will there be for that type of work in the coming years.

O*Net Interest Profiler – In answering the questions, which are nearly identical to those of CareerOneStop’s Interest Assessment, you will rate how much you like to perform various tasks, ranging from writing a book or managing a retail store to building cabinets or repairing appliances.

After completing the assessment, you will get a chart ranking six interests and explaining what kinds of tasks people with those interests like to do. Then you choose from a list of how much preparation – i.e., education and experience – you would be willing to put into getting a job. The site then gives the types of jobs that match particular interests with links to find out more information about each job.

Truity Career Personality Profiler – This simple assessment with basic questions about what people like to do and their personality traits only takes about 15 minutes to complete. When you finish the evaluation you will receive an instant personality profiler with some of the results. To get the full profile costs $19.

Career Explorer – This assessment begins like the others but then goes into more detail, asking whether you are interested in specific careers (mostly professional, which means they usually require a college education) and interested in studying specific fields. It also asks for your name, age, ethnicity and level of education, as well as your email address. (It asks these questions as part of the company’s extensive testing against age, ethnicity and gender bias, so that it can deliver an “Impartial and unbiased” list of questions.)

Other questions relate to skills that might be used in a career. After an extensive drill of questions, you will receive a list of your characteristics, top career possibilities and top degrees you might be interested in studying for. You can also become a member for $48. Membership offers additional information, access to a members’ network and a career library. In addition, there’s a database to search for scholarships. This website is clearly for professionals and wanna-be professionals.

Transfer your skills to another job or field

Also, if you want to know what other jobs you can do with the skills you’ve developed, go to mySkills myFuture, put the name of the jobs you have done, and it will tell you other jobs that require those same skills. You can compare careers, find training and search for jobs.

Consider bringing it up in the job interview

Finally, you may want to bring up in the interview that part of your job search preparation included utilizing job interest assessments that were built by data scientists and expert psychologists. And the assessment is another indication that you are a strong match for the job. This could be a convincing reason for the hiring manager to consider extending a job offer.

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