Fact finding is a popular component of assessments. In this assignment you retrieve limited information on a problem and then have to find more facts to develop your vision of the problem.
How does it work?
At the start of the fact-finding assignment you as the candidate get limited information about a problem or situation. By asking your conversation partner the right questions you then try to gain more information on the subject, so you can develop your own vision on it. This often takes place as a one-on-one conversation. Your conversation partner plays the role of the customer or the suspect that has more information.
What gets observed?
In a fact-finding assignment, attention is paid to the way you try to obtain information and whether you focus on the right issues. Based on the information you have at your disposal you need to be able to assess what else you want to know and what the important issues are. It is therefore about the ability to see which issues are relevant and to then apply a tactic to dig up these issues.
After the conversation you should elaborate on your point of view based on the information you have gathered. How would you solve this problem and is the situation clear in your mind?
When is it used?
Fact finding is used especially in selection assessments for positions in which employees have to interrogate suspects such as detectives or attorneys general, or in sectors in which employees have to talk to clients frequently.
Your attitude during the conversation, the questions you ask, the connections you find based on the answers and your advice after the conversation are all matters that are taken into account in the review of the fact-finding assignment. They all give the assessor information on your analytic powers, social and communicative skills like listening and influencing, and your decisiveness and evaluation ability.
In assessments role plays and practical simulations are another frequently used component.