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University of Limerick Careers Service Assessment Centres.

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Presentation on theme: "University of Limerick Careers Service Assessment Centres."— Presentation transcript:

1 University of Limerick Careers Service Assessment Centres

2 University of Limerick Careers Service Why do Employers Use Assessment Centres Used to assess if a candidate has the personal qualities needed Used to predict future work performance Used to see if you fit in the organisational culture

3 University of Limerick Careers Service What is an Assessment Centre Usually a 1 or 2 day selection process Attended by a group in the company premises or a neutral venue Includes: Group exercises, In tray exercises, Role plays, presentations, aptitude test & interview

4 University of Limerick Careers Service What is an Assessment Centre? Usually a 1 or 2 day selection process Company premises or neutral venue Includes social or informal events Meeting with recent graduates or managers Simulates real work environment Varied activities to assess different attributes

5 University of Limerick Careers Service Typical Asssessment Criteria Teamwork Ledership Interpersonal skills – Communication, Networking Problem-solving/logical reasoning Ability to work under pressure Ability to think quickly on your feet Ability to cope with uncertainty Ability to see the big picture

6 University of Limerick Careers Service Diary of an Assessment Centre 9.30Meet other candidates over coffee 10.00Group discussion 10.30Fact-finding exercise 11.30Interview 12.00Aptitude test 12.30Lunch 1.30Case study exercise 2.30Case study presentation 2.45Group exercise 4.45Company presentation by senior managers 5.15Depart

7 University of Limerick Careers Service Assessment Exercises Group –Group Discussion/Chaired Discussion Group –Case Studies/Business Games/Outdoor exercises –Informal Discussion with Employees Individual –Personality and Aptitude Tests –In-tray Exercises/Written Exercises –Presentation skills –In-depth Interviews

8 University of Limerick Careers Service Informal Discussion with Employees Network with other candidates and employers Ask intelligent questions Show interest in their work Don’t drink too much Don’t boast about what you can do for them

9 University of Limerick Careers Service In-tray Exercises Measures competencies such as Organisational Skills, Planning, Communication Skills, Problem Solving, Client Focus Based on typical day to day issues that may arise The contents of your “in-tray” might include faxes, meeting minutes, s, letters etc. Your task is to prioritise the tasks, take action and give reasons

10 University of Limerick Careers Service In – tray exercise Do Try to be clear about the instructions. Keep a sense of proportion - balance the urgency against how important something actually is. Aim to focus on the essential points about the tasks not every minor detail involved. Be specific when giving your reasons. Don't Get distracted by irrelevant information or 'errors'. Spend too much time analysing the information. Over scrutinize the details. Try to do everything yourself - use other people in the organisation! DON'T PANIC!

11 University of Limerick Careers Service Group Discussions Given a topic to discuss – may be the company, the industry, current affairs, recent news headlines, university life etc. Usually a time period is given e.g. 30 minutes Observed by 2 or more staff members

12 University of Limerick Careers Service Group Discussion Exercise Working in groups of 6, you have two hours to decide how to spend €1m for the benefit of the business. Your company has acquired this through selling off one of its chains of Italian-style restaurants and you have to decide which parts of the remaining business could benefit. You have a chain of hotels, a small chain of up-market pubs, a chain of travel agencies and five new leisure complexes. ( You will be given data about the performance of each of these groups and you may be allocated a role as representing one of these sections.)

13 University of Limerick Careers Service Case Study As an individual, you have 15 minutes to study the following example of a problem which may face a manager in our company. You may make notes if you wish. As a group you will be asked to discuss the problem and reach conclusions on it. These conclusions should be unanimous and not decided by voting. (45 minutes allowed for discussion)

14 University of Limerick Careers Service Group Discussions Be prepared – research the company, use websites, brochures, trade journals etc. Be prepared – be up to date with any relevant developments in the news – read the ‘quality’ newspapers Be prepared - Get some practices speaking up in tutorials, clubs, societies etc.

15 University of Limerick Careers Service Chaired Group Discussions Candidates are chosen in turn to lead a group discussion on a given topic Usually about 10 minutes each Your role:  Introduce the topic – manage the time  Encourage contribution from participants  Help to maintain the flow of discussion  Summarise when neccessary

16 University of Limerick Careers Service Group Exercises How do you perform in a group setting? Are you a regular team player, a natural leader or a maverick? Do you tend to be the ice-breaker, the protagonist or the ideas generator in the group? Employers are interested in the right balance of characteristics

17 University of Limerick Careers Service Group Discussion Exercise Working in groups of 6, you have two hours to decide how to spend €1m for the benefit of the business. Your company has acquired this through selling off one of its chains of Italian-style restaurants and you have to decide which parts of the remaining business could benefit. You have a chain of hotels, a small chain of up-market pubs, a chain of travel agencies and five new leisure complexes. ( You will be given data about the performance of each of these groups and you may be allocated a role as representing one of these sections.)

18 University of Limerick Careers Service Group Discussion –Who talks the most –Who strays from the subject –Whose arguments are ignored –Who insists on being dominant, interrupts or squashes other contributors –Who doesn’t talk at all +Whose points are accepted +Who encourages others to join in +Who introduces new ideas +Who listens before contributing +Who builds on the ideas of others Notice:

19 University of Limerick Careers Service Psychometric Tests Aptitude Tests - measure skills relevant to position –Verbal comprehension - evaluate logic of text –Numerical reasoning - interpret statistical data –Diagrammatic reasoning - recognise patterns –Watch timing – complete as many as possible Personality Questionnaires –Look at personality style –No right or wrong answers –Be spontaneous, don’t try to second-guess –Tests include built-in checks –Employers may be looking for different personality profiles Practice using online tests on

20 University of Limerick Careers Service Before the test Practice, Practice, Practice! Get a good nights sleep Do some basic maths revision Listen to/Read the instructions carefully Avoid spending too long on a question

21 University of Limerick Careers Service Presentations Prepare and practise Have a structure Think about the audience Use some visuals Have 4-5 main points Don’t overload with information Give an outline and summarize at the end Watch the time Finish on a strong note

22 University of Limerick Careers Service In-Depth Interviews Prepare Review CV, company information, job description Review skills checklist and think about evidence Prepare questions to ask Interview more related to work you will be doing Interviewers much more technical in their questions Interviewer might refer to some of the exercises Person you might be working for will probably be highly influential

23 University of Limerick Careers Service Resources - Destinationswww.ul.ie/careers www. targetjob.comwww.targetjob.com DVD on Assessment Centres from Careers Service


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