Here is some helpful advice and information to consider when it comes to completing psychometric tests:
Read everything carefully
It may seem obvious but not taking the time to read the question or instructions properly is a common cause of avoidable mistakes, so try to avoid skim reading any of the information provided. Although it sounds simple, important information can easily be missed, especially under timed conditions. Ask questions in advance of taking the test so you can find out if you can use a calculator, if you can change selected answers during the test and if the questions are timed individually. These are important questions that will affect how you approach your test, and will help you to manage the available time, allowing you to read thoroughly without feeling rushed.
Honesty is the best policy
If taking a test online, you might be tempted to get a friend to help you. This is NOT a good idea as most employers do verification testing in order to ensure that the person who completed the unsupervised assessment is actually the invited candidate. Software is used to compare your performance level and responses between the online test and the subsequent supervised test. This shows them if you have collaborated on your test, or even had someone else take the test altogether. So it’s best not to take the risk and play by the rules.
Preparation, preparation, preparation!
Inductive reasoning tests can look a little daunting if you’re not familiar with them, so you might want to try some practice tests first. Practising an inductive reasoning test beforehand is considered to be the most effective form of pre-test preparation. Practice can provide many advantages, such as familiarisation with the question format, improved confidence and less anxiety when it comes to undertaking the real thing. It also gives you a chance to figure out how to tackle the questions in a way that you are comfortable with. Not only is practice beneficial to preparation, it can also aid development, as candidates are provided with an opportunity to identify areas needing improvement and those which are particular strengths. They don’t say “practice makes perfect” for nothing!
Choose the right setting
If asked to complete a test in an online unsupervised format, candidates may undertake their test at their leisure, at any time and any location, provided it is before the official deadline. The setting in which you complete your test is key and should not be overlooked. Completing tests in a stress-free environment, without disturbance and at a convenient time is likely to lead to better performance. Most importantly you’ll need to make sure there is a reliable internet connection. You might also want to make sure that you choose a time and location where it’s unlikely that you’ll be interrupted, as this could break your concentration.
Updating your internet browser is important as it reduces the likelihood of technical difficulties when accessing the testing platform. Similarly, it is important to deactivate any browser security settings such as ad blockers as they may interfere with the functioning of the test platform.
Knowledge is power
Finding out what psychometric test publisher has provided the test you are required to complete is a vital piece of information which can be used to your advantage. Different psychometric tests vary in structure and style, therefore knowing what you are up against is a good way of ensuring that you know what to expect and don’t encounter any surprises that could catch you off guard.
Calm those nerves
It is only natural to experience some anxiety when completing psychometric tests and a manageable level of nervousness could help to keep you vigilant throughout the test. However, extreme anxiety could serve to hamper your performance. Preparation is invaluable as a technique to lower feelings of anxiety. Similarly, being well rested and having plenty of time to submit your completed test before the stated deadline is likely to reduce any last minute nerves. Just before you begin your test, it might be a good idea to take a couple of minutes to relax, or even perform a deep breathing exercise, as this should help your prepare your mind set.
Sometimes psychometric tests can contain trick questions. An example might be providing two very similar possible answers. Ensuring that you have paid attention to the details in the pattern or sequence before selecting an answer is the best way to avoid this type of mistake, but remember to stay mindful of the time limit!
If you feel you are entitled to extra time on a test or that you have specific requirements, it is important to inform the recruitment team as soon as possible. Simply letting them know on the day might not allow sufficient time to accommodate any special requirements and you may have to return at a later date. You may be required to present a medical certificate in order to qualify for extra time on the test, so it is important to consider whether you have access to these or if you will need to arrange for copies to be sent out prior to completing the test.