By Victor Akumu
Psychometric assessment tests (popularly known as aptitude tests by many Kenyans) are a measure of an individual’s mental capabilities and their behavioral attitudes. Many employers in Kenya make use of psychometric tests to measure a candidate’s suitability for a particular role. Psychometric test have proved popular as they are able to extract and identify hidden aspects of a candidate that CVs and face to face interviews cannot establish.
According to Caroline Nyaga a HR recruitment specialist with Flexi Personnel, a majority of Kenyan job seekers fear psychometric tests due to a number of reasons while others believe it’s not a good measure to assess their abilities, personality and job suitability. Caroline explains that psychometric tests in Kenya are usually objective and statically examined.
The main types of psychometric test are Aptitude testing and Personality and occupational questionnaires. Aptitude tests evaluate your competence, logical, analytical and reasoning ability in a specific field while Personality and occupational questionnaires are used to identify the way you will behave in a situation, how you do things and your attitudes. The most common type of aptitude testing is verbal and numerical logical reasoning.
Some of the tips that you can use to pass your next psychometric test include
Practicing psychometric testing techniques
The key to passing psychometric tests in Kenya is to practice, practice and practice. According to the research done by Flexi Personnel Kenya, many Kenyans believe that if they have a degree, they can easily pass an aptitude test. This is a wrong assumption as aptitude tests are timed and designed uniquely to test a certain skill set.
Be in good mental or physical shape
The day before going for a psychometric test, you must ensure you are in good mental and physical shape. Make sure you have enough rest as tiredness and divided attention are the main reason why most Kenyans fail psychometric tests.
Ensure you properly understand what the employer is looking for in a job applicant
Once you understand what the employer wants, you will be able to ascertain whether your profile fits what they are looking for. This will help you be better prepared for any psychometric testing given.
Be open minded and as truthful as possible
There is no wrong or right answer in a psychometric test. When taking the test, it is important to be as open minded as possible while answering as truthful as possible. While one can think that a particular answer is inappropriate, the employer might be looking for a person who will provide such an answer. Another advice given by Caroline is that it is not important to answer all questions as the test is usually timed. The best strategy is to complete all the easier questions as all carry equal weight.
(Victor works at Flexi Personnel Ltd)