Home / Getting a new job / Assessments


Find out about different types of candidate assessments and tips for completing them.

Organisations use a variety of assessment tools to enhance the quality and quantity of information available during the recruitment and selection procedure.

They are most frequently used to help shortlist when many people have applied for the post and for more senior level appointments when extra information is needed to make a decision. Aptitude tests are also commonly used for jobs requiring specific skills, i.e. typing, accurate data input and dealing with high volumes of information.

The positioning of assessments in the recruitment process can vary from company to company. Most commonly assessments over the internet are conducted after the initial shortlisting of applications, although some employers conduct occupational personality assessments at the very start of the recruitment process. Employers will usually repeat and validate assessments which measure ability (numerical, verbal, non-verbal and logical reasoning assessments) at interview stage, so do not be tempted to have your friends complete the test for you.

Some of the main types of assessments are:

Top tips for completing assessments

One of the best ways to become successful at assessments is to practise taking them. Many companies that provide assessments to employers provide practice examples on their websites that can be used for free:

Points to remember on the day

If you are taking the assessment at home; take it in a quiet room and try to ensure no one distracts you. Inform the company beforehand if you have a disability which could affect your performance (e.g. dyslexia) and if you need to wear glasses or a hearing aid, make sure you use them during the session.

If you are taking the assessment on the premises of the organisation, make sure you listen carefully to the instructions. Don’t be afraid to ask questions if you have any and try and stay calm and focused.

Last updated: October 2019