Test Takers' Guide
The chances are that, as a candidate, you either have or will come across online or offline psychometric tests as part of your job-hunting process.
This guide helps to de-mystify the process for you and contains useful hints and tips, which will help you to prepare, do justice to yourself and to give of your best in those all-important tests and questionnaires.
The term Psychometric literally means “measurement of the mind”.
Psychometric tests are standardised exercises which compare the responses from the particular candidate taking the exercise with those derived from lots of other people with similar backgrounds to themselves.
The most commonly used psychometric exercises for recruitment include:
Personality questionnaires are not strictly speaking tests. They come in two main formats:
Ability tests are normally timed and have right and wrong answers. These assess your ability in different areas.
For supervisory, graduate, managerial and professional roles, these tests often include verbal reasoning and numerical reasoning.
For skilled, craft and technician roles, these tests can include mechanical reasoning, spatial awareness and fault finding.
Traditionally this was via a paper-and-pencil format with a qualified administrator introducing and explaining the test process and invigilating as the exercises are taken.
This still occurs, but online assessment is becoming more and more widespread.
Sometimes the exercises can be completed online by you remotely at a time and place of your choosing (such as at home). On other occasions you might be invited to take the exercises on a PC at the client’s premises, or possibly even at your recruitment consultant’s premises.
Well-designed, well-administered exercises provide very objective and accurate information on a candidate’s strengths and development areas.
They are often used for screening out candidates, to save time and money later in the process, before or in conjunction with the interviewing stage.
Sometimes they are used after final interview stage, if a client cannot decide between two or more candidates or if a client wants to know more about their final chosen candidate(s).
There are some useful websites for test takers to check out on the internet. Also use Google and enter words like "psychometric", "psychometrics" and “aptitude tests” to keep abreast of relevant new sites.
SHL Talent Measurement Assessment
A range of assessments and tests.
Click on "Practice questions" for a sequence of practice tests covering different ability areas.
This website has a comprehensive download giving verbal and numerical test practice questions. Click on “Practice psychometric tests”.
This site provides graduate level verbal, numerical and diagrammatic test questions but you may need to pay a fee.
This website also has plenty of information plus free, downloadable practice tests as well as test questions to buy.
University of Kent Psycho Tests
This is a University site so the exercises are of graduate level.
The test publisher Saville Consulting has various preparation guides for taking ability tests that can be downloaded.