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Assessment Centres Career Development Centre University of Ulster.

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Presentation on theme: "Assessment Centres Career Development Centre University of Ulster."— Presentation transcript:

1 Assessment Centres Career Development Centre University of Ulster

2 Aim: To provide participants with an understanding of the different elements of assessment centres

3 Learning Outcomes: At the end of the session participants will be able to:  Understand what is involved in the different exercises/tests  Deliver a presentation  Participate effectively in a group discussion or business game  Recognise criteria employers use for selection  Locate good examples of exercises on various websites  Reflect on the key qualities required to perform successfully at assessment centres

4 What is an Assessment Centre?  Employers use assessment centres to select the best candidate for the job.  Assessment centres usually include a combination of exercises and tasks that can measure candidates’ strengths and weaknesses in competencies relevant to the job  You will be working in small groups of five or six, and will be assessed by a team of observers  They typically last from half a day to two days and will be highly structured and organised  At the end, assessors consider each candidate’s individual performance throughout the assessment centre and select who is the most suitable 

5 What competencies do employers look for?  time management  personal organisation  problem solving  decision making  personal drive and initiative  creativity and innovation  leadership  interpersonal and communication skills  adaptability or flexibility  team working  influencing and persuasion 

6 Typical Exercises/Tasks  Group exercises and/or discussions  Written exercises/Case study  In-tray exercises  Presentations  Psychometric tests  Panel interview  Social events  ac007.shtml ac007.shtml

7 Group Exercise  Binge drinking is widespread among young people, causing violence on our streets and using valuable hospital resources. The government is considering changing the legal alcohol drinking age from eighteen to twenty one  Take five minutes to jot down a few points  Discuss in your group, come to a consensus and respond to the above by writing a short statement, less than 60 words.

8 What skills are being assessed Group exercises and/or discussion  Can range from building a bridge from Lego to discussing a controversial topic, coming to a consensus and making recommendations within a specified time  You will be assessed on your performance so make sure you understand the instructions and what you have to do  Leadership  Team working  Communication  Problem solving  Analysis and logical thinking

9 What skills are being assessed Written exercises/Case study  you are given an outline of a real organisational situation and lots of facts and background information. You must read the information and make recommendations which you will discuss with your assessor  Commercial awareness  Creating thinking  Problem solving  Influencing skills  Written communication

10 What skills are being assessed In-tray exercises  In-tray and other exercises are designed to see how you manage complex information  You may be asked to prioritise or make decisions based on the information given  Planning  Organisation  Analysis  Problem solving  Prioritisation  Adaptability

11 What skills are being assessed Presentations  Prepare a presentation on a specified topic or one of your choice.  Topic and/or material may be given ahead  Audience will be assessors and may include other candidates  Influencing  Persuasion  Planning  Communication

12 What skills are being assessed Psychometric tests  Computer or paper based, multiple choice and strictly timed  Be sure you understand the instructions before you begin.  Practice tests available in the CDC and on the PDSystem.  Logic  Numeracy  Literacy  Verbal reasoning  Spatial or diagrammatic reasoning

13 What skills are being assessed Panel Interview  Two or more interviewers, probably senior members of staff  Treat the same as normal interview but include eye contact with all the panel  Research the organisation well  Be aware of current issues of the sector as well as the organisation, anything relevant in the media recently  Be prepared for questions on the technical aspects of the job  Competencies that may not have been covered elsewhere  Your knowledge of the organisation and interest in the job  Interviewers may refer to earlier exercises for further clarification

14 What skills are being assessed Social Events  This could be lunch or dinner with other candidates, current trainees and senior staff from the recruiting organisation  Alcohol may be freely available so be careful  unit-ac019.shtml unit-ac019.shtml  How you behave in a social situation  Your ability to network and find out about the organisation  Whether you will fit in

15 Presentation  Prepare a short presentation on My Greatest Achievement  Use flip chart paper and markers  Key areas to focus on: structure, content and style

16 Presentation - Structure  Beginning, introduction to what you are covering  Middle, where you deliver the talk  End, which summarises the main points

17 Content - Presentation  Keep your visuals clear and simple.  Use bullet points rather than large chunks of text.  Design visuals to be consistent with what you are saying.  Get someone to check your spelling. Errors will stand out.  Practice using your visuals in advance to make sure you are comfortable with the technology

18 Presentation - Style You will be assessed on how you deliver your presentation and build a rapport with your audience. Think about your:  Voice. Speak clearly and a little louder and slower than you would in normal conversation, making sure you vary your tone.  Body language. Stand up straight, facing your audience. Don't fidget, cross your arms or put your hands in your pockets.  Eye contact. Look at your audience and share your gaze around the room.  Movement. Don't stand rooted to the spot, but move a little without pacing up and down.  Gestures. Use your hands to stress what you are saying.  Face. Smiling will help you look enthusiastic and confident. You will be assessed on how you deliver your presentation and build a rapport with your audience. Think about your:  Voice. Speak clearly and a little louder and slower than you would in normal conversation, making sure you vary your tone.  Body language. Stand up straight, facing your audience. Don't fidget, cross your arms or put your hands in your pockets.  Eye contact. Look at your audience and share your gaze around the room.  Movement. Don't stand rooted to the spot, but move a little without pacing up and down.  Gestures. Use your hands to stress what you are saying.  Face. Smiling will help you look enthusiastic and confident.

19 Preparing for Assessment Centres  Do your research about the organisation and the job  In the assessment process, your knowledge of the job and the organisation could be examined by three means: - in an interview - through work based simulation exercises - during social activities  Know the competencies required  Do practice tests, case studies, and other exercises beforehand 

20 Make the Most of your Assessment Centre  Be well prepared. There is a lot of help available  Listen carefully to instructions. Do not begin any exercise or test without being fully aware of what you are expected to do  Make eye contact with those you are working with, presenting to, or being interviewed by  Be polite and pleasant. Include everyone in discussions and listen to what they have to offer  Consider your contribution. Quality is more important than quantity 

21 End of Session Checklist  Do you understand what is involved in the different exercises/tests?  Can you deliver a presentation?  Have you participated effectively in a group discussion?  Can you recognise criteria employers use for selection?  Can you locate good examples of exercises on various websites?  Can you reflect on the key qualities required to perform successfully at assessment centres?


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