Psychometric tests, also known as personality tests, have been part of the recruitment process for many years. If you have applied for a graduate role or gone for a job that requires a specific skill set, it’s likely you will have had some experience of this type of test in the past.
Modern employers regularly use psychometric testing as one of the many weapons in their arsenal of recruitment tools to help them weed-out less suitable candidates. Personality tests are typically the next stage of testing after job-based competency tests have been completed.
Once employers have found candidates with the necessary knowledge and skills for the role, then they want to find the right personality types. That leaves them with a much smaller group of qualified candidates they can invite to an assessment centre or interview.
Can you tell them what they want to hear?
Many people approach personality tests with the idea that they’ll simply tell the employer what they think they want to hear. For example, personality tests are commonly carried out for air traffic controllers as employers need a very specific personality type. So, when asked to ‘Rate your attention to detail on a scale of 1-10’, even if you can be a bit slapdash, the temptation would be to give yourself a perfect score.
However, personality tests include checks to detect your level of honesty. In many cases, very similar questions are asked multiple times but worded differently to catch out those who are trying to pull the wool over the employer’s eyes.
There are also questions that ask candidates about undesirable behaviours that the vast majority of people would have demonstrated in the past to detect their level of honesty. Even the time you take over some questions might be flagged as unusual and could raise some doubt about the veracity of your answers.
The moral of the story is, honesty is always the best policy.
So what can you do to pass?
1. Practice makes perfect
Many people are complacent when taking psychometric tests and assume they’ll be able to pass without doing any practice. However, like any other type of test, the more practice you do and the more familiar you are with the different question and test types, the better you’re likely to perform.
Here’s a sample test you can try at home.
2. Try to find out what type of test you’ll face
There are lots of different psychometric test types and providers out there so it makes sense to do everything you can to find out exactly which type of test you’ll face. Some employers will provide information and even sample tests you can use to practice, but many will not provide any details at all.
If you are not given sufficient information about the number of questions, the time you’ll have or the format the test will take, we recommend taking a proactive approach to find out more. You should:
- Contact the employer’s HR team or your recruitment agency to see if they have any information to provide;
- Use web resources such as Wikijob, Glassdoor and The Student Room to try and connect with candidates who might have taken the test before.
3. Read every question very carefully
As we’ve already said, it’s often the case that certain questions are repeated but with a slightly different wording each time. Inconsistencies in your answers to these questions will be a cause for concern for the employer, so make sure you read every question extremely careful.
4. Take a good look at the explanations
Each group of questions will have a specific explanation to accompany it. Take your time over these explanations as a failure to understand what you’re required to do will certainly not reflect well on you.
5. Be confident and believe in yourself
That might sound like a cliché, but this is not the be-all and end-all. If you answer the questions truthfully and still fail the test then it’s a sure sign that the job was unlikely to be a good fit for you.
The expert assistance you need
At Linguistica Recruitment, we provide expert support and assistance throughout the recruitment process to help you land your dream bilingual role. Take a look at our current vacancies, submit your CV or call 02397 987 765 to find out more.