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How to Stand Out in an Assessment Center

Assessment centres are becoming an increasingly popular method of assessment in the world of talent attraction. They give you a chance to learn more about the company and managers, and it allows the employer to meet a high number of candidates in a small space of time so you really need to stand out!

What to Expect

Typically, these centres focus on finding your soft skills, it allows an employer to learn how you act under pressure and how well you work in a group. It’s also a great opportunity for them to see how you communicate.

When attending an assessment centre you will take part in a range of activities like presentations, role plays, group tasks, case studies and even psychometric tests.

These centres use a scientific approach to select candidates, rather than employers using their instincts. You should expect to be assessed by a range of managers who will write down and record everything that you do. Normally, you will be scored against a list of criteria, this makes for an easy review at the end of the assessments.

How to Prepare for an Assessment Center

After you’ve secured a place at an assessment centre, you need to be fully prepared so you can perform to your best ability. It’s time to show the organisation what you can do!

Research and Planning

Ensure you’ve searched LinkedIn for staff from the company. Connect with them and ask for their advice, they’ve once been in the same position as you. You never know, they might mention to their manager that you’ve gone the extra mile. Also you’ll most likely have to give a little introduction about yourself at the start of the day so prepare it before you go.

If you’ve had a task or presentation to prepare then ensure that it’s your best work and that it’s engaging, you don’t want to bore them! The 6/6 rule is handy, don’t use more than 6 words for each bullet point, and don’t use more than 6 bullet points per slide. This should be well-rehearsed and not go over the allocated time.

Listen Well and Speak Up

There will be a lot of information being shared, make sure you listen to it! However, you need to make sure that you’re using your voice to show them that you have listened and understood it. You should speak up and say things that are considered and thoughtful, and make sure you don’t interrupt others.

Don’t Get Bogged Down with Little Tasks

Whilst it is helpful to assist with scribing or folding over charts, getting stuck in one of these roles won’t allow you to stand out and make the most during a task, so do your best to avoid them.

Find Solutions

During these days a number of problems will usually occur; make sure you’re thinking critically and can create solutions, you need to show them that you work well under pressure and in times of challenge.

Use LinkedIn

When the assessment day is finally over remember to connect with the managers that assessed you on LinkedIn, it's a proactive approach that will really show your interest.