Pre-interview tasks and testing: what’s the point?

We’re seeing more and more businesses setting a short task or test as part of their interview and recruitment process.

While they were once limited mostly to graduate schemes to narrow down large volumes of similar applicants, they’re becoming more common for other positions too.  They could include a maths quiz, a mock telephone call, presentation, written exercise or something else relevant to the role.

It might be done before, during or as a follow up to an interview.  A task ensures that potential workers can do the job, not just talk the talk.

Completing a task will help you to get a feel for some of what you’d do in a job: whether that’s confirming that you want it or putting you off entirely.  Most importantly, it’s an extra opportunity to demonstrate that you’re a Bright Spark!  And in our experience, many applicants for a position won’t bother with a pre-interview task anyway.

For an employer, you can filter out the less serious applicants and also find out much more about an applicant than from a CV alone.  The person who performs the best might not be most experienced or qualified on paper.  If you can, find out how a candidate approached a task too – did they spend days perfecting something or set themselves a time limit?  Are they keen to learn from any negative feedback?  You may gain an extra insight into an applicant that you could otherwise have missed, or learn what training another might need.

An unconventional interview process might be the best way to find that dream applicant, or give you an opportunity to show you’re capable in your dream job.  And we’ll always try and do whatever we can to help!  So get in touch!