Of all these elements of excellence, the most critical to success, from the standpoint of the assessment provider, is working with SMEs from the food safety industry to shape the methodology of creating exams. SMEs have in-depth experience in food safety and provide invaluable insights into the various industry sectors that must be devoted to food safety. Working with SMEs when creating exams helps ensure that assessments are relevant, rigorous, and accurately reflect the test taker’s ability to perform in the workplace.
As content updates to exams and certification programs occur on a regular basis, working with SMEs also results in higher-quality question sets, as well as quicker turnaround when updates are required.
Prometric’s Certified Professional Food Manager program, for example, is accredited by both ANSI and the Conference for Food Protection. Covering both retail and restaurant environments, it has been designed to mirror real-life situations that lead to the understanding of critical food safety principles and the ability to apply that knowledge at work. And for those who handle food, or work indirectly with food items in food preparation or serving areas, Prometric developed the Professional Food Handler Certificate. This program helps test takers demonstrate that they know how to: implement food safety practices to prevent illness, contamination, and pest infestation; properly clean and sanitize food prep and serving areas; identify appropriate personal hygiene protocols; manage time and temperature control; and recognize allergens and symptoms of allergic reactions.
Ever since the Pure Food and Drug act passed Congress in 1906, the food industry has made continual progress in delivering safe, wholesome groceries and meals to the American public. But as the statistics at the beginning of this article make clear, that commitment to progress must always be top of mind for restaurants, groceries, and other institutions. Through participation in exams, assessments, and certification programs, the industry can fulfill this commitment.
Williams is senior vice president of test development solutions at Prometric, a provider of food assessment solutions. Reach him at Stephen.firstname.lastname@example.org.