The Digital Agilty Test introduced by David Castera

Employee are at the center of the digital transformation of any business. First because their Digital IQ is the limit of the digital potentiel of the organization, secondly because the most advanced ones are change agents the business must rely on.

Many businesses underestimate their employees’ digital culture and knowledge. However, it’s important for them to assess the situation, know where they’re standing, who’s mature and who’s lagging, who needs to be cared about.

Not such a long time ago, being able to write and count became mandatory. Then it was the ability to use a computer and office suites. Today, digital culture is one of the core skills one should have. Within 10 years it will be an assumption, but today it’s important to measure it and when one has a look at the market it’s obvious that there are few if any solutions to do that in a structured and organized way.

Thatt what the Digital Agility Test (TANU) offers. I recently interviewed his creator, David Castera, who explains us the birth of the product and how it works.

Bertrand Duperrin : Hi David. How did you come to build the Digital Agility Test ?

david castera
David Castera

David Castera : Me and my company, Immersive Lab, have been working for many years with a regional branch of Credit Agricole, one of the french biggest banking group. From the very beginning of web 2.0 they’ve been trying to be leaders and were one of the first company to really get social media and make a good use of blogs for corporate purposes. We’ve been working on acculturation over the last two years

One day, while conducting an awareness session on digital, fintech and the future of banking for recently hired young employees, we discovered than some of them were not as digital savvy as we could have expected. Some were even digital-averse.

With the branch director, we immediately came to the following conclusion. There’s already so much to be done to care about current employees and help them to embrace digital that we can’t fail when we hire new employees. And we realized that digital skills were overlooked during the recruitment process.

It appeared to us that being able to assess candidate’s digital culture was mandatory. After having explored the market in vain, we decided to develop such a test on our own and make it a product we could propose to the market.

BD : What did you try to assess  ? Technological knowledge ? Behaviors  ?

DC : We wanted to go beyond that. More than technology, what matters is that people understand how much digital is disrupting their business, their jobs.

BD : What does the test consist of  ?

DC : It’s  a 30 minutes 90 questions online test that covers 5 categories : internet, computing, social networking, technology, digital economy. At the end of the test the candidate gets an overall score out of 100 and a score by category that helps to know where he’s standing and in which fields he should improve.

From the company’s slide, it allows and objective evaluation and, most of all, to assess everybody on a single frame of reference. So, it’s possible to compare results.

BD :  So the test allows to score people’s digital general culture but what about the business specific side, which may be a critical requirement ?

DC : Business can add categories. For example banking, e-commerce etc. It’s possible for a company to have a common base for everyone and a specific part based on their core activity (IT, HR etc…)

BD : Is the lack of digital culture a matter of no-go in a recruiment process ?

DC :The test has not been designed in this purpose. It not designed to discriminate but inform the business that such candidate has a high digital maturity and such other a week one. But the final decision should not be made upon the result. A busines can hire someone who has strong business skills and a weak digital culture. But, in this case, the company will know from the beginning that the employee will need specific support and care to bridge the digital gap.

BD : It seems obvious that the potential of TANU goes well beyond recruitment…

DC : You’re right. We designed it for recruitment and at the end 90% of the business that come to us want to use it at a diagnosis tool. [Personal notice : I’m not surprised at all].

The Crédit Agricole’s branch used the test to identify “Digipassers…”, change agents who will help to spread the digital culture.

BD : And how do employee react ?

DC : We noticed some positive side effects. The first one is that the elder take consciousness of what the younger can bring. As a matter of fact, and even if that’s a widely shared assumption, the score helps to make thins tangible, objective. People who used to think they were “good enough” realized that they had a wide gap to bridge. It makes the digital divide tangible so it makes it easier to explain our initiatives to fix the divide.

Another positive effect is that it made some people aware that digital was bigger than they thought. Some said “oh…it much more the office suite on my computing and email…”. It raises people awareness and makes it easier to set things in motion.

BD : Thanks a lot David

Head of People and Business Delivery @Emakina / Former consulting director / Crossroads of people, business and technology / Speaker / Compulsive traveler
Head of People and Business Delivery @Emakina / Former consulting director / Crossroads of people, business and technology / Speaker / Compulsive traveler

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