Whether it was from home offices, bedroom workstations, or kitchen counters, this year a record-breaking number of applicants submitted a Kira Assessment. Showcasing their passion, intelligence, and talent through timed video and written responses, 2020’s applicant pool proved that, when given the right tools, applicants can shine just as brightly online as in-person.
In this year’s report, you’ll see the results of our 2020 commitment to the overall improvement of our applicant experience, and discover why more and more schools are choosing Kira to help make their admissions process more fair, efficient, and effective.
- What’s new for applicants this year?
- By the numbers
- By the comments
- How Kira collects and uses feedback
- Why publish this data?
- Past reports
What’s new for applicants this year?
It’s been a year of transitions. From in-class to at-home, paper to digital, and in-person to online, applicants are juggling a ton of new tools. That’s why we made it our mission to ensure that Kira’s applicant experience feels less like an obstacle course and more like a red carpet. We rebuilt the in-platform experience from the ground up, upgrading our entire system, streamlining processes, and giving the design a facelift.
And these upgrades weren’t just skin deep. In 2020, we committed to building a platform that would level the playing field by enabling every single applicant to put their best foot forward.
Now certified compliant by WCAG 2.0 AA accessibility standards, Kira’s in-platform experience empowers all applicants, including those with disabilities, to complete a Kira assessment without requiring any additional accommodations.
By July 2020, all upgrades were live, and Kira went on to record its highest applicant ratings in company history.
By the numbers
91.1% of applicants rated their Kira experience either “Great” (4/5) or “Exceptional” (5/5)
Amazing news! This almost 10% increase in ratings from 2019’s report confidently demonstrates the impact of the user-centric focus of our platform redesign.
73.1% of applicants rated their Kira experience “Exceptional” (5/5)
Another substantial jump from last year’s report – over 20% more applicants felt their experience completing a Kira assessment was exceptional!
The average rating was “Exceptional” (4.6/5)
This 6% increase from last year’s score of 4.3/5 has bumped us up from “Great” to “Exceptional”. In other words, if we were one of your applicants, you’d be sending us an early admission’s offer.
1.5% of applicants rated their experience as “Poor” (1/5)
This year, we heard some important feedback around increasing preparation and response times and meeting reviewers in real-time. We heard you and we’re working on it!
All feedback around custom Kira features, such as assessment questions and the amount of prep and response times allotted, are anonymized and sent to the respective admissions teams to help them optimize their assessments.
As for meeting reviewers in real-time, Kira now has you covered. Learn more about Live Interviewing in Kira.
97.2% of inquiries were solved in-platform by Charlie
From set up advice to technical fixes, Charlie the chatbot was able to instantly and successfully answer almost all of our applicants’ questions, sending only 2.8% of tickets directly to our support team for further assistance.
Over 90% of applicants who left feedback on support rated their experience as “Great”, given the options of “Great”, “Okay”, and “Not Good”.
A 1% increase from last year’s report, this is a small but mighty step in our commitment to continually improving applicants’ experiences with Kira Talent.
By the comments
We know that numbers don’t tell the whole story. Here’s what applicants had to say in their own words…
Applicants felt fully engaged
Connecting applicants to institutions is a pillar of our platform. We’re proud that we can provide an effective way for schools to create a great first impression and an effortless way for applicants to demonstrate their talent.
“This was a wonderful experience and made me even more excited about the possibility of attending [the school]!”
“I liked how the questions were tailored to [the school’s] values and how the videos featured current medical students!”
“Loved how much I was able to tell [the school] about myself because I feel that it’s the first step to bringing in a close-knit community on campus.”
“I really appreciated that the questions were typed out as well as said in the videos (really helps those with hearing disabilities).”
“It’s great to see the diversity in faculty asking questions!“
“I have used two other online interview platforms beside Kira Talent. This one is the smoothest I have used. I enjoyed the format very much.”
Applicants appreciated the opportunity to be heard and seen
“It is really great to know that [the school] values more than just our academic achievements.”
“ I felt like I was able to showcase myself in a way that might not be displayed in my other admissions materials. Big fan of this process, I would highly recommend it to others.”
“I like that it creates a more personal image of me instead of just a student who happens to do well in exams.”
We couldn’t fully prevent interview jitters
“It’s a great platform. I just don’t like interviews!”
“The system itself is great, just very stressful. The time limit and needing to see your own reflection is quite scary.”
“The time crunch is stress inducing.”
But many felt Kira helped reduce their stress
“I felt very prepared to answer the questions because I was able to practice as many times as I wanted. My nerves were basically gone by the time I got to the assessment.“
“It’s much less stressful to respond to a recording than to a live individual. You feel a sense of privacy and that can help you gather your thoughts. I felt comfortable during the interview.”
“It was so nice to have the practice round to get used to the process and system layout. It made my interview less nerve racking for sure, and it made me more able to be my authentic self.”
“I loved how this software gives you endless amounts of practice attempts! Helps get rid of the nervous jitters.”
While there will always be an element of stress in any kind of assessment or interview, we try to reduce that as much as possible. It’s great to hear that the new platform experience helped. We promise to keep looking into other ways to help applicants put their best foot forward.
Some applicants missed the opportunity to connect in real-time
“The platform is very easy to use. Only reason I didn’t give five stars is because I prefer to see a person’s expression when I am responding to their question.”
“I personally prefer face to face interviews (even if it is virtual).”
“I liked how there was faculty videos in the start and end of the interview. However, I think it would be more beneficial to have a live listener with you during the interview.”
We heard applicants loud and clear! Now there’s a solution that will help your team meet applicants in real-time online, while streamlining your admissions process. Live Interviewing in Kira Talent allows your team to interview and evaluate applicants in a single online platform.
Built for the way you interview
Bring your MMIs and one-to-one interviews online with Live Interviewing.
How we collect and use feedback
How we collect feedback
After completing a Kira assessment, applicants score their experience on a sliding scale of one (poor) to five (exceptional). In addition to the numeric rating, applicants have the opportunity to share any feedback or requests anonymously.
As part of our Applicant Experience update, we intentionally redesigned our assessment exit survey with the goal of increasing transparency and authenticity of our applicant feedback. This redesign included flexible scoring, rephrased questions for added clarity, and transparent messaging on anonymity, ensuring that applicants felt comfortable submitting their honest feedback. With these changes in place, Kira saw a 20% increase in applicant’s leaving feedback, giving us a better understanding of how your applicants are experiencing their Kira assessment.
For this year’s report, feedback was collected from July 1st, 2020 (the launch of new Kira’s new Applicant Experience) to December 31, 2020.
How we use feedback
Applicant feedback is at the core of decision making here at Kira. We use the valuable information gathered from applicants in the following three ways:
For insight: At the end of each year, we present each admissions team with a summary of anonymized feedback from their applicants. Highlighting comments around question content and preparation and response time helps schools refine and enhance their custom assessments.
For innovation: Feedback helps us continue to develop an applicant-first product. By gathering new ideas, suggestions, and critiques directly from applicants, Kira brings user insight directly into product planning.
Why publish this data?
To drive continuous improvement: Last year, we promised to make our assessments more accessible. By incorporating accessibility into the admission’s process, we aim to increase the range of students who can complete a Kira assessment. In-turn, increasing your ability to admit a diverse and inclusive cohort.
Check out the other enhancements Kira made in 2020
To celebrate the success of our partner schools and their applicants: For the fourth year in a row, the number of applicants who completed a Kira assessment has grown. Our partner schools were able to connect with more applicants this year, despite pandemic restrictions. This positive feedback from applicants is a direct reflection on their impression of the schools.
To be transparent with prospective clients: As one of the first connection points between an applicant and a school, we recognize our responsibility to maintain and elevate your brand. If you’re considering Kira, we know it’s important for you to understand what the experience will be like for your applicants. As a partner in your admission’s process, we confidently stand by this feedback.