Top Tips for improving your performance with psychometric assessments

If you find the idea of completing online psychometric assessments daunting you’re not alone. Saqib Saddiq, Senior Psychologist at Graduates First shares his top tips for tackling psychometric tests:

  1. Start thinking about psychometric assessments well in advance so you have time to research the types of assessments you might be asked to complete and familiarise yourself with them. Many employers use the same test publishers to source their psychometric tests, so it’s worth spending time practicing to familiarise yourself with the types of psychometric tests and typical formats before you sit the assessments for real.
  2. Spend time practicing tests in advance. Most universities purchase packages to enable their students and graduates to practice online assessments under similar conditions to the real thing and receive detailed feedback so they can identify and work on areas for improvement. Along with Graduates First, (subscribed to by Sheffield Hallam University and other universities), other sites offering practice tests include CEBGlobal and Assessment Day.
  3. Find out which types of tests you’re likely to face with specific employers (for example look at the employer profiles on Graduates First), then spend time preparing for those specific tests. If you know you’ll be sitting a numerical reasoning test (tests your ability to reason with numerical information using basic arithmetic calculations) practice basic calculations in advance e.g. via BBC Bitesize. If you are expecting to take a situational judgement test or work personality questionnaires research the type of candidate the company is looking for and try to match your characteristics. When answering questions in the real assessment try to think of behaviours that a good candidate would demonstrate.
  4. Use practice tests to identify areas you can improve on, then work on improving your performance in those areas. If you find you struggle with accuracy, work on your concentration. If you run out of time you might need to take more practice tests and work on your speed.
  5. Realise that you’re not expected to finish the assessments –  they’re designed to stretch all candidates (meaning that no-one will reach the end). Stay calm and do your best – without getting upset if you do not manage to answer all questions. This is especially important if you are expected to go through a number of assessments in a row.
  6. Make sure you have the right conditions to maximise your performance completing the assessments use a PC or laptop in a quiet location where you won’t be disturbed etc. Make sure you have all the necessary items to hand before your start, such as a few sheets of paper, a pen and a calculator (if needed).

For more tips from myself and my colleagues at Graduates First, follow us on YouTube