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What to expect at a Graduate Assessment Centre


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Competition for graduate roles is high and as a result, more and more recruiters are choosing to implement assessment centres to help them pick out the best graduates. To help you shine at your assessment day, IT graduate jobs have put together this quick guide as to what you should expect on the day.

Bear in mind that each assessment day is different and so you may be required to undertake some or all of the following.

  • Psychometric Tests

Psychometric tests are less daunting than they sound! They are simply a way of testing your numerical, verbal and spatial abilities. This type of test is usually timed to add pressure, so do work quickly but try not to panic as it’s quite normal for candidates not to finish. There are plenty of websites that will let you practise psychometric tests – these are a very good idea!

  • In-tray exercises

These are thrown in to take a look at how you prioritise tasks. You would be given a selection of reports, emails or letters (similar to those somebody doing the job would receive) and ask you to decide what action to take as a response to each task and in which order you would deal with them.

  • Group Exercises

Group exercises tend to make up a large part of assessment centres. They are designed to see how you work with people in either a managerial role or as the person taking direction. They look for key skills such as the ability to communicate clearly, listen intently, problem solve, lead, share ideas and complete a task on time. If there are issues you could also take the opportunity to demonstrate conflict management.

Group exercises could be anything from constructing a bridge using basic resources to coming up with a business plan or even debating a current news topic.

  • Presentations

Most assessment days will include a presentation. More often than not they are based around a pre-arranged topic that you have been asked to prepare in advance, however occasionally you are asked to put something together in an allotted time. When delivering a presentation the assessors are less interested in the content of your presentation than in the way the presentation is delivered. Remember to keep it professional, be confident, speak clearly and keep structure to your presentation (keep a clear introduction and end with a conclusion. )

Some words of advice:

Assessment centres aren’t as scary as they first sound – so keep calm. Try and get a good night’s sleep before you go and be prepared – at the very least make sure you have a pen and some paper.

Good luck!

IT Graduate Jobs is part of the Technojobs Group - a leading IT and Technical recruitment site.

The group also includes: IT jobs in Scotland


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