When you hear the words ‘psychometric tests’ this might conjure up some feelings of anxiety or nervousness or it might just make you ask the question ‘what on Earth is that?!’
Psychometric testing is a common tool used by employers to benchmark candidates and ensure cultural fit in the organisation.
In this guide you’re going to learn how to prepare for psychometric tests and learn how you can ace them 🙂
I’ve also got a whole tonne of practice tests to help you get prepared.
Where In The Process Am I?
Note: This diagram provides an indication of what your application process may be like. Please visit your prospective employers website for their actual application process.
Why Do Employers Use Psychometric Testing?
As mentioned above, psychometric testing provides employers with an objective way of benchmarking candidates for graduate roles.
As interviews can be somewhat subjective, psychometric tests provide an objective measure of candidates abilities and aptitudes. Some employers also suggest that psychometric tests are more reliable and valid than other assessment methods and therefore rely on them quite heavily.
Psychometric tests are also used to help screen through a large number of applications. Generally speaking, employers tend to set a ‘pass mark’ or percentile at which graduates would need to achieve to progress through to the next stage of the application process.
The results of psychometric tests are not normally used to make a final decision on whether you would be offered the role or not, but used to provide supporting documentation to the hiring manager throughout the process and at the final interview. It can give the interviewer an opportunity to ask specific questions that relate to the tests to help determine your suitability for the role.
Types of Psychometric Tests
The three most common types of psychometric tests used by graduate employers are verbal, numerical and abstract reasoning tests. Another test that is often used is a personality questionnaire. This is normally used to determine whether you would be suited to the Organisations culture. Again, it can also be used to help the interviewer to ask more specific questions.
Verbal Reasoning Tests: These tests are designed to test your comprehension. For example, you might be required to read a paragraph and answer a set of questions based on your understanding.
Numerical Reasoning Tests: These tests are designed to test how well you interpret numerical and statistical information. For example, you might be presented with a set of graphs and numbers and will be asked a set of questions to test your understanding.
Abstract Reasoning Tests: These tests are designed to test how well you can problem solve and deal with new concepts. For example, you might be presented with a set of shapes and be asked to choose the next shape in the sequence.
Although the tests above are the most common, if you’re going for an engineering role you might be asked to take a mechanical ability test. This test is designed to test your understanding of how things work or how things are built.
How to Ace the Psychometric Tests
Now that you know why psychometric tests are used and what types of tests there are, it’s time to help you get prepared so you can ace the tests!
Contrary to my last sentence, the tests are actually designed in a way that you cannot prepare for them. It’s not like an exam where you can absorb all of the content prior and simply recall the information when you need it. In psychometric tests, you are presented with fresh information and you are required to analyse the information in a short time period. Yes, that’s right, the tests are timed.
But fret not.
I’ve compiled an awesome list of practice tests that you can use in the comfort of your own home.
Although you can’t prepare as you normally would an exam, you can certainly practice the free tests below and get familiar with what each of the tests include. The more you practice these kinds of tests the more comfortable you will be in completing the real one when the opportunity arises.
All of the below practice tests are absolutely free. If you wish to practice further, there are more out there that you can pay for, however these free practice tests should be enough to get you started.
Verbal Reasoning Practice Tests:
Practice test 9 – NEW!
Practice test 10 – NEW!
Numerical Reasoning Practice Tests:
Practice test 9 – NEW!
Practice test 10 – NEW!
Abstract Reasoning Practice Tests:
Mechanical Aptitude Practice Tests:
Most employers use SHL for their psychometric tests, so why not check out SHL’s practice test centre where you can actually do a full-length practice test.
Do you know of other useful, free practice tests? Please let me know and I’ll add them here.
Top Tips for Acing Your Psychometric Tests
- Get a good night sleep the night before your test
- Have a calculator with you that you are familiar with
- Try a few practice tests just prior to the real one to help your brain switch on and focus on what you’re doing.
- Read the instructions carefully. If you don’t quite understand the instructions then don’t hesitate to ask.
- Don’t rush and guess the answers. Although the tests are timed, it’s about the number of questions you get through AND the accuracy of your answers. The tests are purposely designed so you will most likely NOT finish the test. Don’t be put off if this is the case (but also don’t spend too long on one question!)
If you haven’t already, don’t forget to subscribe to Gradrecruit where you can get access to your free Career Launch Toolkit which provides the tools and resources necessary to help you launch your career.
Have you checked out our other Career Launch Guides?
- How to Write a Graduate Resume
- How to Write a Graduate Cover Letter
- How to Prepare for the Telephone Interview
- How to Prepare for the Final Interview