What are Interview Tests?

tests for interviews

When companies are trying to fill a vacant position, hiring managers need as much information as possible to decide who’s the best candidate. Employers are looking for all types of information, including the candidate’s experience, background, and skill set.

Conducting interviews is the primary way hiring managers to determine who’s best for a job. Hiring managers will also, obviously, look through resumes and research candidates online, such as looking at their LinkedIn profiles.

But another tool in hiring managers’ arsenal is pre-employment tests, also known as interview tests. If the test given is fundamentally sound and well-validated, the results can help companies get a closer look at several aspects of a candidate, including their skill set and communication style.

Pre-employment tests are never that fun to take as a candidate, but they’re an essential part of the hiring process for many employers. That’s why knowing these tests and how you can do your best is vital.

Empire Resume will tell you everything you need to know about interview tests, including what kinds of tests you can expect and other important info.

Aptitude Tests

tests for interviews

Aptitude tests are one of the most popular forms of pre-employment tests. This form of a test is easy to understand, as it evaluates you based on your relevant skills for the type of job you’re applying to.

For example, if you’re a computer programmer, a company would likely test you on something related to programming and technical skills. These tests are popular for companies because they enable them to differentiate between candidates with similar backgrounds and experiences.

It’s tough to prepare for aptitude tests, though. There’s no one-size-fits-all, and each company does it a bit differently. It’s not like taking a standardized test like the SATs in high school, where you can prepare for likely questions. Get ready for an aptitude test by staying current on relevant industry skills and other crucial trends in your career path. If you’re asked to take one, do your best and also understand companies won’t turn you down just based on the test results.

Another way these tests are done is to give candidates an assignment or task like what they’d be doing if hired. If the employer wants to use your work and the test result, they may even pay you for it.

Be sure to take this test very seriously because employers will often use it to determine the best person for the job. If you impress the hiring managers on a test like this, you can significantly increase your chances of landing the job.

Personality Assessments

tests for interviews

Aptitude tests are straightforward and easy to understand. Personality tests are another matter entirely. With personality tests, employers want to gain insights into your communication style and how you’ll get along with co-workers.

A typical personality test will ask you to choose adjectives to describe yourself or present sentences you must agree or disagree with. Of course, you should always be honest when answering the questions, but you should also understand how personality tests work and what employers look for in the results.

In the past, personality tests were only given by government agencies or other employers where workers had high levels of responsibility, such as the airline industry. Nowadays, tests are standard in all sectors. This is because employers want to see confident, decisive, and consistent candidates who are emotionally mature and will be easy to work with.

This is important because many personality tests can be long and repetitive. The questions are often confusing and seem to have multiple answers that could be correct. Take your time and be consistent in your answers. Also, look online for practice personality tests, so you know what they’re like before being asked to take one.


tests for interviews

Hiring managers may also ask you to give a presentation as a form of pre-employment test. This is like a work sample or assignment and will be crucial to getting the job. Usually, you’ll have time to prepare for a test like this, but sometimes you’ll be asked to give a presentation on the spot.

Presentations are more common in industries such as sales where presentations are the norm. Companies will evaluate you based on your ability to communicate clearly and think on your feet. Practice makes perfect, so the best way to ace the presentation is to practice with friends and family. Public speaking is challenging for many people, so the more you practice, the better off you’ll be.

Group Assignments

Another standard pre-employment test is activities with a group of potential co-workers. Hiring managers will want to see how you work with others, and within a team, so this type of test will be more common for the types of jobs where group work is more of the norm.

Remember that the most take-charge and extroverted people aren’t always the best teammates in a situation like this. Even if you’re an introvert, find ways to impress the potential employer by working well with others and contributing good work and ideas. Group assignments for pre-employment tests are also helpful for candidates because they give you a better idea of your potential co-workers and if you’d want to work with them.

Put Your Best Foot Forward

tests for interviews

Pre-employment tests aren’t the most fun thing for a job candidate. You could spend a great deal of time on a work sample or a presentation, not be paid for it, and not even get the job. However, it’s essential to understand that many employers use interview tests and find them valuable.

Getting a full view of a job candidate is challenging, especially if companies rely solely on interviews, resumes, and what the person says about themselves. Companies receive several applications for open positions, and using interview tests helps narrow the process down to the most qualified candidates.

As a job candidate, understand that doing well on these tests can be the difference between getting the job or being passed over. It’s frustrating to take lengthy, repetitive personality assessments and work hard on projects that may amount to nothing, but if the employer finds it valuable, and they usually do, you should always put in your best effort to impress.

Stay tuned to Empire Resume’s blog for more helpful insights on careers and employment, such as Three Essential Resume Must Haves, Dressing for your Interview, and How to Get Promoted.

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tests for interviews

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Maria Gold is a Content Manager/Writer for Empire Resume. She is dedicated to helping educate and motivate people with the latest career articles and job search advice. Her interests range from writing to programming and design. She is also passionate about innovation, entrepreneurship, and technology.

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