Jason Schaefer, MBA, MA, Joins Biddle

Biddle Consulting Group, Inc. adds another new Senior Consultant, Jason Schaefer, M.B.A, M.A., to its team of EEO experts. Jason has more than ten years of experience developing and validating examinations used for employee selection and licensure/certification clients throughout the United States. This includes designing and administering job analyses, conducting standard setting studies, writing technical reports, and performing specialized research related to test construction and validation. He has provided technical guidance to clients in test design, use, and analysis, as well as, conducted psychometric analyses to assess exam and item effectiveness. Additional work included the development and administration of surveys assessing employee attitudes, organizational climate, client satisfaction, program/process effectiveness, and 360 degree feedback for leadership development purposes.

Jason holds Master’s degrees in Business Administration and Industrial and Organizational Psychology from California State University, Sacramento.  Jason has presented research findings on topics of interest to testing professionals at a variety of professional conferences.


For more information about Biddle Consulting Group’s job analysis, test validation, and test development consulting services, please visit www.biddle.com or call (800) 999-0438.

Clinton Kelly Joins Biddle Consulting Group Team

Biddle Consulting Group, Inc. is proud to announce the addition of Senior Consultant Clinton Kelly, Ph.D./ABD to its team. Clinton has more than ten years of experience working with a wide variety of clients in the areas of job analysis, test development, and test validation services. His previous work experience includes him being responsible for developing and maintaining over 300 licensure tests in six different states and developing licensure tests in over a dozen states in variety of licensure areas (e.g., construction, insurance, cosmetology). He has also assisted with the development/validation of bilingual-certification testing for law enforcement and social-worker positions and developed assessments for public safety departments throughout the country. In addition, he has conducted psychometric analyses (e.g., item difficulty/discrimination, cut scores, pass rates, adverse impact, reliability, equivalent alternative forms), facilitated subject matter expert meetings, and authored technical reports.

Clinton holds a Master’s Degree in Industrial and Organizational Psychology from California State University, Sacramento, and he is completing his doctoral work in Applied Social Psychology at Brigham Young University. He is widely respected in the industry and has conducted presentations at a wide variety of professional conferences around the nation.

For more information about Biddle Consulting Group’s job analysis, test validation, and test development consulting services, please visit www.biddle.com or call (800) 999-0438.

AAAA Conference Update & Understanding Basic Qualifications in Light of New 503 and VEVRAA Regulations

OFCCP Director Pat Shiu Addresses a Full-house at the AAAA Conference

OFCCP Director Pat Shiu Addresses a Full-house at the AAAA Conference

OFCCP Director Pat Shiu spoke at the *AAAA (American Association of Affirmative Action) 40th Annual Conference last week. She reiterated being a Federal contractor is a privilege, not a right, and underscored the requirements associated with that right focusing on the OFCCP’s initiative to reduce compensation disparity. She also took time to address Federal contractor concerns regarding the new 503 and VEVRAA regulations. This year’s conference was held in Nashville, TN at the Gaylord Opryland hotel June 4-6.

BCG Principal Consultant Dr. Jim Kuthy and Consultant Heather Patchell, attended the conference and spoke Thursday on Understanding Basic Qualifications in Light of New 503 and VEVRAA Regulations.

Here are a few key points from the Basic Qualifications presentation:

The final regulations reiterate the standard for Basic Qualifications (BQs); BQs must be “job-related and consistent with business necessity.” Federal contractor’s will be required to “periodically” review all physical and mental qualifications (with changes to reference protected veterans and VEVRAA). This requirement, plus the requirement to review personnel processes, is why contractors absolutely need to update their ADA compliant job analyses. A schedule of the review must be included within the AAP. It is important to note that employers cannot use BQs to screen out applicants if the BQ is related to an essential function that could be solved and/or satisfied with a reasonable accommodation.

Good news folks! Everything doesn’t need to be done at once; focus on the high-volume positions with lots of turnover/hiring! Just like any other practice, procedure, or test, BQs must be evaluated for adverse impact. But here’s your major take-away point: to the extent any physical and/or mental qualification tends to screen out individuals with a disability, the contractor must ensure that qualification is “job-related for the position in question and consistent with business necessity” (i.e., valid).

If you have  questions regarding compensation disparity, the new Section 503 and VEVRAA regulations, job analyses, or basic qualifications, let us know. We can help.

Upcoming BCGi Webinar:

IRegister Here!f you were unable to attend the Understanding Basic Qualifications in Light of New 503 and VEVRAA Regulations conference presentation, it’s not too late. Jim Kuthy and Heather Patchell will share the same content in an upcoming BCGi webinar on July 10, 2014!

Visit www.bcginstitute.org/event/bqs-vevraa-503-webinar now.

*The AAAA is now called the AAAED – American Association of Access Equity and Diversity.

Is it a Good Idea to use SAT Scores for Making Employment Decisions?

by Dan A. Biddle, Ph.D.

Many recent news posts reveal that some employers are beginning to use SAT scores as “factors” in the hiring process. Examples include:

Recruitment DecisionsWhile arguments abound regarding the benefits of using SAT scores as indicators of future job success (especially for jobs dealing with vast volumes of complex information), is this a safe practice for employers from a Title VII (test discrimination) perspective? Another important question is: “Do SAT scores provide more useful information on applicant quality than other measures?” Let’s take these questions one at a time…

First, the Title VII liability issue. When it comes to test discrimination liability, Title VII is quite straight forward: If an employer uses a “practice, procedure, or test” (or “PPT”) that results in success rates that are significantly different between groups, such PPT is actionable (by either plaintiff or federal regulatory groups) under Title VII. This means that the employer can be taken into court and required to “make a demonstration” that their challenged PPT is “job related for the position in question and consistent with business necessity” (1991 Civil Rights Act, Section 703[k][1][A][i]). Because SAT scores might not directly map to concrete and observable skills and abilities that are needed for many jobs, making such a “job relatedness demonstration” would rely on either “construct” or “criterion-related” validity defense under the current federal testing regulations (the “Uniform Guidelines,” 29 CFR 1607).

Both of these techniques would require the employer to prove that SAT scores were statistically significantly correlated with meaningful aspects of job performance. In other words, SAT scores would have to directly translate to job performance in a statistically meaningful way. While conducting such a study might prove this out, the employer is still taking a substantial risk!

Note that such a case would also depend on just how the SAT scores were used—whether they were used in a fixed way or if they were only “soft considerations” combined with many other data points. Further, employers would be challenged to defend SAT scores if they were used by different hiring managers in different ways.

Second, do SAT scores provide more useful information regarding applicant quality than other measures? The short answer is “not likely.” This is because human performance is made up of a myriad of different factors, including smarts, personality traits, drive, experience, discipline, background, motivation, and the list goes on. Further, each of these performance ingredients is needed in different levels, and in some cases different ways, for various positions. That’s why the best selection process is always one that “wraps” various PPTs around the specific job by profiling the job using a thorough job analysis. Only then can the employer be sure that the most important success factors are being properly measured and weighted in a selection process.

Our firm has developed hundreds of custom PPTs for hundreds of employers. We’ve also defended several tests in litigation settings. If I had to choose between a quick and easy measure like SAT scores (perhaps coupled with an interview) and a robust selection system that considered several different competencies and weighted them according to the specific job needs, I would choose the latter every time.