10 Pointers to Help You Ace Your Assessment Center

5 MIN READ        APRIL 25, 2022        Valentine Oliver

Used in the final recruitment stages, an assessment centre is an avenue for an employer to see you in action. 
You'll be tasked with completing a number of activities that assess your suitability for both the role and the hiring organization after you've passed the pre-screening stages of selection. Presentations, case studies, and group exercises are frequently included.
You'll be up against some stiff competition because only the best candidates make it to the assessment centre stage. The good news is that with proper preparation, you can stand out from the crowd.
Here are ten pointers to get you started.

1. Gather as much information as possible ahead of time.

Knowing what to expect at an assessment centre is essential for success, so do your homework.
Your invitation should outline the types of tasks you'll be asked to complete, but you can get more information by visiting employment forums (e.g., Glassdoor, Student Room) and reading about past candidates' experiences.
Take plenty of practice tests in advance if your itinerary includes aptitude or skills assessments. Make a list of everything you'll need for the day, and check for any tasks that need to be completed ahead of time.
If you have any questions, don't be afraid to ask the HR department for clarification.

2. Be familiar with the organization and your role within it.

You will be evaluated on a set of predefined skills and qualities throughout your assessment day. Your ability to demonstrate them will determine both your suitability for the role and your fit with the company's working culture.
Your application should have given you a good idea of what the role entails, but it's a good idea to go over the job description again and highlight the key competencies and attributes required.
You should also learn about the organization's core values, where it stands in the market, how it plans to move forward, and how your role will fit in. The more background information you have, the better understanding you will have of what the assessors will be looking for.

3. Go over your application and interview preparation again

Because only the most promising individuals are admitted to an assessment centre, anything you've done thus far has certainly left an impression. Take advantage of this by improving on what has come before.
You might have already gone through a virtual or in-person interview. If this is the case, solicit input to identify any areas that want improvement as well as those that are on target. This is the most effective strategy to prepare for the interview portion of your assessment day.
If you haven't already been interviewed, thoroughly analyze your application in light of everything you now know about the role and organization. Consider how you can strengthen any areas of weakness.

4. Plan your presentation ahead of time (if possible)

If a presentation is required, you may be provided instructions about it ahead of time (such as the topic and duration) as well as the equipment you'll need.
Make use of this chance to design and perfect both the content and the presentation manner. Make sure you handle the issue properly and that you know your presentation well enough that you don't need to rely on notes.
Request that friends or family members observe your presentation, regardless of whether you are a confident public speaker or not. The stress of an assessment centre may have an effect on your performance, but the more you practice, the more assured you will be.

5. Make an excellent first impression

First impressions matter a lot on the big day. It might be difficult to turn things around if you get off to a bad start, so arrive early and with everything you need.
Make sure you've dressed appropriately. Your invitation may have specified a dress code, but if you're unsure, you may always contact the company for confirmation.
Ideally, you want to appear educated and professional while also being at ease enough to do all of the tasks on your assessment centre schedule.

6. For group exercises, adhere to excellent practices

These are among the most common tasks performed at an evaluation centre. It's critical that you present yourself as a team player here, as this is the main ability they're looking for.
Every team requires a variety of personality types, from those who lead to those who monitor progress. It makes no difference which role you play as long as you contribute effectively to the group dynamic.
Work to your strengths and urge others to do the same to ensure maximum participation from everyone. Regardless of the assignment, make certain that the entire team knows the brief and is working toward a collaborative conclusion.

7. Be prepared for unexpected events

An assessor may, on occasion, adjust the requirements of an assignment at the last minute. For example, you may have been requested to prepare a 15-minute presentation but discover that you only have 10 minutes on the day.
This is intended to put your adaptability and resilience under duress to the test, just as you may be expected to do in the workplace.
The trick is to remain cool and adapt as much as possible. You'll be more receptive to change if you're aware that this could happen.

8. Take a proactive stance

Candidates who immerse themselves in the experience stand out at assessment centres. You're being judged at every stage - including breaks – so be on your game at all times.
Ask questions to demonstrate your passion for the opportunity, and network with other attendees to demonstrate your social abilities. Grab each opportunity you can to get involved outside of the chores that have been assigned to you.

9. Be the best version of yourself possible

Employers can get to know you outside of the interview room at assessment centres, so let your personality shine through.
A cheerful attitude and likeable character will help you stand out as a candidate, and even if you don't feel confident, attempt to appear confident. This will become easier as you settle into your day.
Avoid being negative, and treat your fellow candidates with the same kindness and respect you would expect in return.

10. Modify your strategy for a virtual assessment centre

As these become more widespread, it is critical to address the issues they pose and how to overcome them.
When participating in a virtual assessment centre, take in mind that successful communication strategies vary. Assessors will be less sensitive to body language indicators, so pay great attention to how you interact with others, especially in group tasks. Make an effort to speak up while also allowing others to speak up.
Practice is by far the best way to prepare for a virtual assessment centre, so schedule video conversations with friends or family to test out your approach.

How we can help

Graduate Scheme Success can help students and graduates to succeed in all psychometric tests. We also assist with internships and graduate job applications.

We can help you reach your full potential with our 1:1 mentoring, online courses and 5* rated services. 
Need guidance and support in succeeding in your applications?  Contact us and book a free consultation today. 
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