How To Pass Online Tests For Job Applications
Online assessments and tests for internship/graduate job applications are a real stress so don’t feel like you’re ever alone when you keep failing them and feel like you’re never going to get past the testing stage. That was me last year! Especially when these online tests are the first you’ve ever had to tackle, let’s say if you’re applying to internships and have never had to do online tests for previous jobs. The first few tests that you’ll do will always feel hard and failure is likely, it takes time to master them and get used to the process. I learnt this the hard way last year by getting rejected by so many online tests, but luckily I managed to pass the online test for my Mars summer internship that I secured! I do also feel that after having completed an internship and working in a corporate environment as an intern/grad, you learn the expectations that are required of you and how you’re expected to work, therefore this helps in the situational judgement tests. Therefore, I’ve managed to pass all of the online assessments that I’ve had to complete this year for graduate jobs I’m applying to, which is roughly around 10 online assessments. I have failed one though! Which was the Boots tests, although I couldn’t even past their online test to get a retail job whilst I was at school so I feel like I have no hope with Boots…
Numerical tests are one aspect of the online assessments. If you’re great at Maths then I feel like you’ll have no struggles with this, however if you’re like me and Maths isn’t your forte, the main advice I have is to stay calm and be logical. A lot of the maths required is linked to problem solving and being logical in the steps you take to get to the answer, so if you’re able to do this then you’ll surely get the answer. Also, write down some basic formulas in case you can’t remember them during the test e.g. percentage change. It’s easy to get overwhelmed and give up and just guess, especially when under time pressure, but do the best you can and you’ll do great even when you think you’ve failed (this has happened to me loads). Also, try not to get tempted by asking your clever maths flatmate to do the numerical test for you because if you’re then asked to repeat the test at an assessment centre, you’re screwed.
Graphical tests are also common to be encountered with, which always remind me of my 11+ days (grammar school kids will know). These are basically non-verbal reasoning tests that require real analytical skills. I’ve done some that are really easy and others that are really hard and made me feel so stupid. The only advice I can give for these is to take your time but select the answer once you’re fairly certain – don’t waste further time when it’s a timed assessment.
Situational judgement/personality tests are assumed to be the easiest test, although many fail on this aspect. Especially when most candidates come from great Universities, are smart academics and can ace the numerical and graphical tests, you don’t want the verbal tests to catch you out. With these, really try to think about what sort of graduate these companies want. I know that you’re meant to answer the questions honestly according to your views, but you need to be quite smart in answering them in order to pass. Most internships/graduate schemes are suited to those that can take on a lot of responsibility, are working towards becoming a leader, aren’t afraid to push boundaries and have a high drive for results. Therefore, you need to have this mind-set when answering the questions and think what their ideal candidate would do in the situations. It will also help give you an idea of what is expected of you if you were to obtain the graduate scheme.
Nowadays, some companies use a gaming system instead of classic online assessments, like Unilever and E.ON. I actually like these because they force less pressure and are pretty fun, but make sure you keep your attention levels high during these in order to succeed.
I hope this post helped those of you who are struggling with online tests, I wish you loads of luck and hopefully you’ll pass! The next stage in an application is normally a video or telephone interview, so I’ll try to make my next post about that.