Spelling is an often overlooked skill that is critical for nearly any position that requires written communication. Automated spelling aides such as spellcheck and autocorrect have not eliminated the importance of spelling ability, though they may have made good spelling a rarer commodity. Proper spelling is a basic component of literacy. Using correct spelling in the workplace is a sign of professionalism, and any written communication that contains spelling errors may leave a poor impression on the reader or damage a company’s reputation. Spelling mistakes can also lead to miscommunication and confusion between coworkers or with clients, leading to decreased efficiency.
Spelling skills are indicative of broader skills such as attention to detail, conscientiousness, and general cognitive aptitude. Most employers who value spelling also value other related skills associated with job-readiness, and therefore many choose to administer a more generalized skills test such as the Criteria Basic Skills Test (CBST). The CBST assesses a candidate’s job-readiness and trainability by testing verbal, communication, and math skills. The test includes spelling questions alongside other questions that assess related skills such as grammar and reading comprehension. Verbal and math subscores are listed separately. Using a broader skills test like the CBST allows employers to use a single test to evaluate not only spelling skills but a variety of skills that are correlated with higher productivity across a wide variety of entry-level jobs. For example, the CBST is an excellent basic spelling and communication test for paralegals, medical records technicians, and legal secretaries.
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