In our earlier days we were primarily an assessment consulting company. We liked having the choice of buying tests from different providers, and compiling test batteries using the best tools available. New and interesting tests were always becoming available, and we enjoyed giving our clients exposure to the latest developments in the industry. To pull all the various results together we employed a bevy of clever, highly qualified, people who spent inordinate amounts of time writing complex reports. In addition, these same degreed professionals spent hours doing the admin and logistics required. While we delivered good work, the role was a grind, since so much of it was repetitive logistics and never-ending report writing. We knew that there had to be a better way of delivering high quality work through digital systems.
The first foray into automation (called ORA – Omnicor Report Assistant) was a useful piece of software engineering that allowed our psychometrists to craft reports in about 50% of the time. But that could still mean a few hours on a report. We had no IT team, so we commissioned ORA to a single retired developer, who coded it over a few months. It basically built the report in paragraphs rather than individual words. We created 100’s of narratives for every dimension, and level, within that dimension, The author could automatically insert, chunked paragraphs, with the correct names and genders appearing magically. We used and developed the technology for a few years, and while it helped speed up the process of writing, the narratives became stale, and there were still many moving parts in the assessment process that created bottlenecks along the way. So we decided to construct a better machine, and to that end we employed our first inhouse developer. We had a vision for what the new system would do, and for a time we just called it the Behemoth. We knew that the system had to be intelligent enough to overlay the results from test scores on top of the shape of the role and determine the extent of fit. So the Behemoth was renamed RoleFit.
RoleFit started small, and by today’s standards it was totally primitive. It housed a smattering of tests and produced a single type of report. But we had big ideas. We started creating mechanisms for loading the scores of other external tests. We looked at the ones we used the most and built capture screen for them. We transitioned from our labour intensive ORA reports to our slicker and quicker RoleFit reports. We were able to produce these reports much faster and as a result our assessment team could spend more time consulting and less time doing admin. It wasn’t long before one of our big assessment clients asked about acquiring RoleFit. Of course we said “Yes”, and we made a license agreement. Soon the client wanted a different report, different tests, new features, and suddenly we were an IT company, hiring developers and getting our heads around a new income stream. The system we had built for ourselves was now for sale, and even our competitors started calling us.
Now it is many years later and lots of lessons along the way. There is a full-time team of developers servicing RoleFit, a helpdesk, a permanent tester, business analysts, and many different clients. RoleFit will never stand still. New tests and new features appear with exciting regularity. We field frequent calls for demo’s and routinely onboard new clients. Our clients tell us what new features they want to see, and where we can, we build them. Next year RoleFit will look different to this year, and while we always want to have a high value product with low barriers to entry, our mission is to remain the best multi-vendor assessment platform in the world. We have looked hard and we have never seen anything that comes close. We invite you to do the same.