ACT WorkKeys® System

The skills needed to listen, communicate, work in teams, and solve problems are important assets for any employee, regardless of career choice. WorkKeys® is a national system for teaching and assessing workplace skills and enables education and business to work together to strengthen achievement of workplace skills. In consultation with employers, educators, and experts in employment and training requirements, ACT has identified key generic employability skills: skills crucial to effective performance in most jobs. The following critical skills form the basis of the WorkKeys system:

  • Reading for Information
  • Applied Mathematics
  • Listening
  • Writing
  • Business Writing
  • Teamwork
  • Applied Technology
  • Locating Information
  • Observation

ACT's WorkKeys System offers a consistent reliable method to hire and screen job candidates and to determine where additional training can improve the caliber of the workforce. As follows, WorkKeys has two components to determine the skills necessary to perform a job and assessments to determine if applicants are qualified for a position. An instructional component is added to help bridge learning gaps.

  • Profiling (job analysis) to determine the skill requirements of jobs
  • Skill assessment to determine the current skills of individuals
  • Instructional support to help educators/trainers as they assist learners in improving their skills. Instructional support is available through online courseware in our ACT Center.

Lamar Institute of Technology utilizes the WorkKeys system in helping business

  • Demonstrate effective, defensible hiring decisions through reliable job documentation
  • Ensure the acquisition of employees with needed skill sets through effective selection procedures
  • Retain and improve employees’ performance through skills assessments
  • Prepare your workforce for the future by identifying performance gaps and applying learning prescriptions

JOB PROFILING (JOB ANALYSIS) WorkKeys job profiles and assessments offer consistent, reliable information to narrow applicant pools and increase job satisfaction by matching candidates to jobs for which they are qualified.

Employers can:

  • Profile skill requirements for specific jobs
  • Evaluate job applicant skills
  • Evaluate the skills of current employees
  • Determine individual and organization skill needs
  • Provide focused education and training needed to meet both individual and organizational goals
  • Aid communication between employers and educators/trainers

Individuals can:
  • Document and credential generic employability skills
  • Provide employers with evidence of skills attained
  • Identify personal education and training needs
  • Link education and training with employment
  • Document skill development over time
  • Identify jobs for which current preparation is sufficient
  • Explore appropriate career paths
  • Target training to skill needs


Educators can:

  • Target instructional programs accurately
  • Develop and revise curricula to meet business and education needs
  • Support and guide individual career development
  • Serve as a professional resource for the business community
  • Reduce remedial education burden of employers
  • Document instructional program effectiveness