Almost all big companies have adopted a filtering process as a means of reducing the candidate pool size to a smaller more manageable set. And there’s no better to do this than psychometric tests. It can be frustrating tripping over on a hurdle which has no bearing on your ability as an engineer, so its prudent to use the resources available to help you pass this stage.
Start by picking up practise material from ‘SHL’ or the ‘Assessmentday’ website. Some content may be free but the good stuff will cost you a few pounds. If you have a number of psychometric tests lined up it may be worth investing. Generally, all psychometric tests will have a practise section, its essential you make use of it as it will give you a good indication of what to expect from the real thing. You may even be willing to sacrifice a company (or two) to serve as the guinea pigs to get a taste of the real thing.
Most importantly, read the questions. Its easy to quickly skip over things to save time but almost always the clues are in the question, so take your time. Have a calculator to hand and a pen and paper to scribble things down. Last but not least, practise practise practise.
Telephone interviews will generally be handled by the HR team, so do not waste your time brushing over technical engineering concepts. Most of the questions will be scenario based and should generally last 15–30mins. You can find good practise questions on google, here’s a few I’ve written down:
1) Can you tell me a bit about yourself?
2) Discuss your educational background.
3) Why did you choose your degree subject?
4) Describe a situation where you showed leadership.
5) Tell me about a time you led or worked in a team.
6) What would you do if you felt that another member of your team wasn’t giving 100 per cent on a group project?
7) Tell me about a difficult challenge you faced at university/work. How did you solve it?