Practise in-tray tests as they appear at top employers’ assessment days with online practice packs from JobTestPrep.
Employers can set many different interview tasks, so get the competitive edge by preparing for what you might encounter
These assess your ability to communicate clearly and formally, testing your skills in timing, persuasion, analysis, public speaking and creativity. Interview presentations usually last 10-20 minutes, and are prepared in advance using Microsoft PowerPoint.
Employers using assessment centres may set impromptu presentation tasks based on an exercise you've already completed. You'll be given around 30 minutes to prepare, which tests your response to pressure. Regardless of the scenario, ensure that you:
When giving your interview presentation, ensure that you:
These usually involve 8-10 candidates, and are often used in assessment centres or when organisations have multiple vacancies. The recruiter will usually provide an industry or workplace-related problem that requires a solution.
Candidates are assessed to performance criteria that accounts for key competencies including teamwork, leadership, enthusiasm, decisiveness, persuasiveness, problem solving, critical thinking, communication and commercial awareness. Three typical group exercises are:
Throughout all group exercises, ensure that you:
These interview tests usually involve writing an essay, email, letter or report on a given topic, though you may sometimes be asked to proofread, review or summarise a document. Tasks typically last 40-60 minutes, and your common sense, comprehension and written communication are being assessed. Ensure that you:
Also known as e-tray exercises (if completed digitally), these synthesised business situations require you to organise your workload. They're a popular interview test with large graduate recruiters as they're very reliable predictors of job performance, and assess key competencies such as analysis, decision-making, time management, accuracy, organisation and communication.
You'll have around 30-60 minutes to work through 10-30 items of paperwork such as emails, faxes, letters, memos, minutes, reports, organisation charts, policy documents and telephone messages. Your primary goal is to prioritise your items, explaining what action is required for each. This could involve responding to queries, drafting replies, making decisions or delegating tasks. You may also be given new material during the exercise. Ensure that you:
Online examples of in-tray exercises can be found at AssessmentDay .
The recruiter will describe a situation to which you're asked to respond with advice, in the form of a report or verbal explanation. Your conclusion is reached by collating and analysing provided information. Case studies test your skills in analysis, creativity and problem solving. Anticipate the type of case study you could receive by researching the organisation and sector; they're particularly common for management consulting and accountancy firms. Also ensure that you:
These 'informal' sessions allow you to socialise with other candidates, assessors, recent graduates and senior management. They're excellent opportunities for you to learn more about the role. Remember to behave yourself though, as you're being assessed - despite social events not being an obvious interview test. Try to appear socially confident and capable of relating to different people.
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