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Testing during the interview process?

InterviewTestsAs discussed in earlier blog entries, employers may use various ways to assess you for a job, but be aware that interviews are a two-way discussion, delivering information about experiences and expectations. Ultimately, the interviewer needs to know how well you could carry out the job and how well you will fit in with their organisation, and you need to convince them that you are the solution to their recruitment situation.

The better prepared you are, the greater level of success, so what kind of tests may you face during this process? Here we look at the most common tests, and what you should expect.

The “Psychometric Test” – Psychometric tests, comprise of two main types of test; performance based and self-assessment questionnaires, they give a profile of people’s characteristics that can be compared with impressions gleaned from an interview, but they cannot predict accurately whether someone will be good at the job or not.

Performance based tests are timed tests where you are assessed on how well or how quickly you perform specific tasks, testing your attainment, ability or aptitude, for example:

  • Attainment tests can be simple arithmetic or typing test or test of specialist knowledge, technology or experience
  • Ability tests include verbal, numerical, spatial ability or “intelligence” tests
  • Aptitude tests are used to evaluate how quickly you can pick up specific skills

Self-assessment questionnaires such as interest and motivation and personality questionnaires create a picture of you through your response to a standard set of questions, there are no right or wrong answers, but they include consistency measures to check you are answering honestly.

The “Skills Test” – These tests, performed either on-site or online, are designed to measure the level of your knowledge or understanding of a particular skill aspect of a position. This could involve a typing test for secretarial placements, accountancy principles for bookkeepers or even testing web developers on their coding knowledge. It is essential that you find out which test you will be taking and what it will involve, and it is beneficial to revisit these topics or practise these tests before the interview.

The “Aptitude Test” – Aptitude tests are designed to predict how well you might do certain tasks, such as: reasoning with words, numbers or diagrams and problem solving and you are usually asked to complete these tests in a specific time frame. Again, similar to the “skills test”, find out what will be involved and practise before the interview.

It is essential that you are prepared and a little time spent before the interview looking at these tests in more depth will give you a great chance of success at the interview.

Looking for advice or tips for a specific issue you are facing on your job hunt, join the discussion by emailing us at, and you could find your advice here on our blog.

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