If you want that job, you need the skills to pay the bills. Before you make it on the payroll, some employers are going to ask you to take and pass a job assessment, which could test your level of competence in doing the duties required for the job, or could simply test your personality traits. Passing some of these tests is going to come down to training -- for example, if you're not trained as a nurse, it's not likely you're going to pass an assessment geared toward nurses. However, if the test is based on personality, the best approach is to answer the questions truthfully.
Ask the employer whether there are any specific skills you're going to be tested for, or simply re-read the job description to get a feel for the types of work you're going to be doing. If you're applying for a bookkeeper's position at a retail store, for example, there's a good chance you're going to be handling payroll and tracking sales. If you're applying as a cashier at that retail store, you're going to need customer service and basic technology and math skills. If you manage to talk to the employer, ask them for the name of the test so you can see if there are any practice tests you can use to study.
Review any educational materials you have that are related to that specific job, find materials at the library or online to help you study. For that bookkeeper position, that may mean taking a look at the book you used in your accounting class; for the cashier, it may mean finding a manual on customer service at the library.
Talk to other people who have taken the same job assessment to get an idea about what the test will entail. Use your network on LinkedIn or other social networks, approach a current employee at the company to which you're applying, or browse online forums for information on the content of the test. Try to get information about the nature of the test -- whether it contains multiple choice, true/false or questions in some other format, and whether there are specific skills that you should focus on more than others.
Get a good night's sleep before the test. Eat breakfast. And visit the bathroom before you start. Relax and stay calm as you take the test. Be honest in your answers, and try to draw on the information you've gained in your training without over-thinking questions.
- If you think you really bombed the test, talk to the employer about it. The test is just one part of your overall job application, and if you're strong in all other aspects, the employer may overlook the fact that you didn't perform well.
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