Assessing Microsoft Office Skills: How to Do It and Why It’s Still Important

Microsoft Office (O365) is a set of essential productivity tools that are widely used in business and educational environments. From creating documents and spreadsheets to managing emails and presentations, Microsoft Office has become a staple in many workplaces. As an employer, it’s important to gauge the O365 skills of potential employees. Here we’ll discuss how employers can assess Microsoft Office skills and why it’s still important in today’s workplace.

Assessing Microsoft Office 365 Skills

There are several ways employers can assess an applicant’s Microsoft Office skills. Here are a few methods:

  1. Online assessments: There are various online assessments available that can test an individual’s proficiency in Microsoft Office applications like Word, Excel, PowerPoint, and Outlook. These tests are usually timed and assess the candidate’s ability to complete certain tasks within the applications.
  2. Skill-based interviews: Employers can ask specific questions related to the application they’re interested in and assess the applicant’s responses. For example, if the job requires proficiency in Microsoft Excel, employers can ask about the candidate’s experience with data analysis and pivot tables.
  3. Practical tasks: Employers can ask candidates to complete practical tasks using Microsoft Office applications. For instance, they can request that candidates create a report in Word, a budget spreadsheet in Excel, or a presentation in PowerPoint.

Why it’s Still Important

Even with the rise of new productivity tools and software, Microsoft Office remains a vital set of skills for employees to possess. Here’s why:

  1. Wide-spread use: O365 is still the most widely used productivity software in the world. According to Microsoft, over one billion people use Office globally. Therefore, it’s highly likely that employees will encounter Microsoft Office applications in their daily work.
  2. Efficiency: Proficiency in O365 can help employees complete tasks quickly and efficiently. For example, an employee who knows how to use Excel functions like pivot tables and VLOOKUP can easily analyze large data sets, reducing the amount of time spent on manual calculations.
  3. Collaboration: O365 has a wide range of collaborative tools that enable teams to work together seamlessly. For example, with Microsoft Teams, employees can collaborate on projects in real-time, share documents, and communicate with each other.
  4. Professionalism: In many cases, proficiency in O365 is considered a basic requirement for professional roles. It shows that an individual is capable of using common productivity tools, and it enhances their credibility in the eyes of clients, colleagues, and superiors.


Assessing Microsoft Office skills is crucial for employers who want to hire skilled and competent employees. There are various methods for assessing an applicant’s proficiency in O365, including online assessments, skill-based interviews, and practical tasks. While new productivity tools and software may emerge, Microsoft Office remains an essential set of skills for employees to possess. It’s widely used, helps increase efficiency, facilitates collaboration, and is often considered a basic requirement for professional roles.

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