Aptitude Test Guide for Job Candidates

The use of aptitude testing to screen potential job candidates has become standard practice in the recruitment process. Pre-screening can occur at several stages - after CV submission, before or after an interview, or during the later stages of a lengthy process - and are now so prolific that if you're applying for a qualified or part-qualified accountancy position within any organization, be prepared to fill out an aptitude test at some stage - usually in a multiple-choice format.

Taking an aptitude test

Aptitude tests enable companies to make informed decisions when hiring for a range of positions. They may be designed with a set of primary aims, however, they calculate the suitability of a prospective candidate through a range of skill and capacity tests, such as behavioural and language skills, to critical reasoning capabilities and problem-solving skills. Tests are ultimately carried out in order to compare candidates from similar education backgrounds with similar skill sets for any given position.

Timed conditions and test instructions are designed to assess how well a candidate performs under pressure. Common types of aptitude questions include:

Numerical - one of the most common types of aptitude test across a variety of sectors and a standard part of a financial recruitment test. Numeracy questions can include arithmetic calculations and the use of reasoning to demonstrate interpretation and analytic skills.

Verbal - an employer will include a verbal test if they wish to assess a candidate's ability to read and apply logical thinking to text-based questions - often using cryptic language.

Language/Literacy - language or literacy tests can sometimes be misinterpreted as a verbal test as they are both language-based. However, literacy tests are included in an aptitude test to assess how you communicate with others through written material. Candidates are tested on how well they execute written language, for example, proficiency in areas such as grammar, spelling and sentence structure.

Reasoning - reasoning assessments tend to be the most varied because they test a wide range of personal and professional attributes, for example, logical reasoning, situation judgement, deductive reasoning and abstract reasoning. Questions can be presented in the form of flowcharts, sequences of diagrams, shapes, patterns and words.

Like any test, there are no shortcuts to passing an aptitude test, and your performance during the assessment will ensure that you progress to the next stage. Taking the time to familiarise yourself with how tests are formatted and the way questions are structured is a crucial part of the process. The best way to develop an understanding of psychometric test conditions is to train before the test using high-quality preparation materials.

Follow the link to access a wide variety of professionally developed psychometric tests that will assist you in your career goals.


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