After months of isolation and delay in all aspects of life, things finally seem to move in a positive direction as the pandemic becomes more controlled and perhaps, understood. Businesses are slowly getting back to work and subsequently, that means the current hiring freeze will gradually come to an end. With the little bit of extra time left at home before summer holiday, now is the best time for students and graduates to start polishing up on job applications, and that includes the first hurdle - Aptitude Tests. Due to the recruitment process being more digitally inclined, here is a quick guide to Aptitude Tests after lockdown to help you prepare for an efficient job search.
Step 1 - Know the type of tests
There are more than one type of Aptitude Tests, each assess a different skill, ability or one's overall personality. Some of the most commonly known include:
- Situational Judgement Tests and Personality Tests - these evaluate a candidate's personality traits, decision making process and their behaviours, either in general or in specific workplace situations
- Numerical Reasoning Tests - they measure one's numeracy proficiency and ability to apply basic maths in solving industry-related problems
- Verbal Reasoning Tests - they test an individual's literacy proficiency and analytical thinking, as well as dexterity.
- Diagrammatic Reasoning Tests or Logical Reasoning Tests - these tests are all about a person's natural intelligence and learning efficiency, assessed using shapes, forms and sequences
- E-Tray Exercises - they can be a combination of all the above, but integrated within real life simulations and scenarios, for example, in the form of responding to messages or emails from colleagues
Knowing the wide variety of psychometric assessments currently used by employers will give you a solid head start, as you can invest your time and effort on the required tests for your chosen roles.
Step 2 - Research
Usually, the employer's career site and perhaps, their LinkedIn or Glassdoor page are the main stops for applicants looking to get to know their company culture, recruitment process, job requirements and their test publisher. However, during COVID-19, as businesses boosted their online presence to make up for the closure of physical premises, candidates can find out much more from employer's social media accounts and even interact with them by participating in webinars, workshops or virtual discussions.
While the event and hospitality, leisure and travel industries as well as beauty salons and gyms have been hugely affected by lockdown and are not likely to be hiring, other businesses that operate mainly digitally, on the other hand, are thriving and still seeking out for creative and ambitious individuals to drive the economy through this crisis. These include healthcare and fitness, consumer goods, media and journalism as well as digital entertainment and technology. Look in the right place and you should be able to find a suitable opportunity, no matter how challenging the job market might be.
Step 3 - Practice, reflect and stay resilient
Once you have familiarised yourself with the concept of Psychometric Tests and the way your employers select new talents, especially for early career programmes, it is time to get hands-on and start practicing. While each type of test has its own characteristics and a different advice will apply every time, one key tip is to always treat practice sessions as if they are the real deal and do this with consistency. Top performers make it to interviews not because they are smarter than everyone, they simply do due to excellent test taking skills and thorough understanding of the employer's process.
Free practice tests often provide personalised feedback and reports to help applicants learn from mistakes, so make the most of this resource and stay resilient regardless of any hiccup along the way. It is also worth noting that as interviews and assessment centres are now taking place via video calls, trying out a few E-Tray Exercises in advance is a useful move to help you gain some insights on actual work tasks and discover where your strengths lie, which can make your responses in the face-to-face interactions later on sound more confident. Smart work will pay off and by the time lockdown is over, you will be ready to compete against the large pool of talents and secure the career of your dream.