Tools, Assessments and Training Support

A series of tools has been developed to help individuals and organizations address workplace essential skills challenges.

Available in a variety of formats, the tools target different learning styles and skills levels, and can be adapted to meet the needs of:

For a complete listing of all tools, see the essential skills tools catalogue.

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Tool user guide

For additional support in selecting and using the tools below, please consult Making the Tools Work for You, a guide to essential skills tools and resources available through ESDC.

Job seekers and workers

Job seekers and workers

Inform: Learn about the importance of the nine essentials skills and how they are used at work

  • What are essential skills?
    A fact sheet that explains the nine essential skills that people need for work, learning and life. It includes examples of how essential skills are used in the community and the workplace.
  • Essential skills success stories
    A collection of real stories about Canadians who have experienced success in work and life after improving their essential skills. Told from the learner’s point of view, these stories can help inspire others to deal with their own essential skills challenges.
  • Browse essential skills profiles to learn about the essential skills required for the job you want.

Assess: Discover your strengths and find areas where you can improve

Support: Improve your essential skills

Tools to track and plan skill development

Apprentices and tradespersons

Apprentices and tradespersons

Inform: Learn about the nine essential skills, why they are important and how they are used in the trades

Assess: Discover your strengths and find areas where you can improve

Support: Improve your essential skills

Find more resources in the job seekers and workers support section.

Trainers and career counsellors

Trainers and career counsellors

Inform: Help job seekers and workers understand the importance of essential skills

  • What are essential skills?
    A fact sheet that explains the nine essential skills that people need for work, learning and life. It includes examples of how essential skills are used in the community and the workplace.
  • Essential skills poster
    A poster to communicate how essential skills contribute to job success. It lists the nine essential skills and provides the web address for accessing additional information, including the tools.
  • Essential skills success stories
    A collection of real stories about Canadians who have experienced success in work and life after improving their essential skills. Told from the learner’s point of view, these stories can help inspire others to deal with their own essential skills challenges.
  • How essential skills are used in the trades

Assess: Determine the essential skills needs of job seekers and workers

The job seekers and workers' assess section has more online indicators and checklists, as well as self-assessments. An essential skills self-assessment is also available in the apprentices and tradespersons section.

Support: Develop training to improve job seekers and workers essential skills

Find more resources:

Employers

Employers

Inform: Discover how essential skills benefit your employees and your business

Assess: Uncover the essential skills challenges that may be affecting your organization’s performance

Determine the essential skills needs of your workforce

  • Organizational needs assessment
    A guide and checklist that helps employers determine whether essential skills gaps are affecting their organization’s performance.
  • Workplace survey
    A questionnaire to help employers identify potential essential skills issues and/or areas of strength in the workplace.

Evaluate the essential skills of prospective employees

  • Hiring checklist
    An interview guide and template to help employers collect information about the essential skills of job candidates. It can help employers find new workers who can complement the skills of their existing teams.

Manage and support the skill development of employees

  • Portfolio
    A collection of binder inserts to keep a record of knowledge gained and skills developed through essential skills training and learning activities. Use it to build a collection of learning materials (e.g. tips sheets, practice exercises) and samples from on-the-job experiences (e.g. email, time sheet, a safety information sheet).
  • Passport
    A tracking resource that lets learners record their skill strengths and identify areas that may need improvement. It is intended to be updated and reviewed regularly.

The Portfolio and Passport can be used with resources from the job seekers and workers' assess and support sections.

Support: Develop employees’ essential skills in your workplace

  • Developing partnerships to support literacy and essential skills
    An online resource containing tips and activities to help employers develop effective partnerships to support essential skills in the workplace.
  • Problem solved! A guide for employers and practitioners
    A guide that includes various techniques, activities and worksheets to help learners practice and improve their thinking skills. This version for employers and practitioners provides instructions for how to integrate this tool into training and development programs.
  • Training activities
    A reference sheet that outlines a series of suggested activities to help employers incorporate essential skills upgrading into workplace training.
  • Job enhancement and essential skills
    A guide to help managers and supervisors support workers in improving their essential skills by giving them new responsibilities and opportunities for development.
  • Mentoring and essential skills
    A guide with tips and activities to support essential skills development in the workplace through mentoring relationships.
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