Numerical Reasoning Tests are commonly used by employers in the assessment process today. The test aims to determine the candidate's ability to come at correct inferences with the given numerical data.
With such high competition in the job market today, more and more employers are relying heavily upon numerical reasoning tests to acquire the best talent for their organizations. However, what exactly are these psychometric tests all about?
These tests enable potential employers to quantify the candidate's numeracy aptitude. The purpose of the numerical tests is to measure your ability to interpret and process given statistical or numerical data accurately. Within the test, you have to analyze the information presented in the form of graphs, tables, text, and charts. It is a multiple-choice question type of test, which usually has 20 to 25 questions. The test has a time limit, which is typically 20 minutes and nowadays is usually taken in the online format.
In a realistic workplace context of a consulting or auditing company, you will be required to work under pressure and analyze large amounts of statistical data to find correct solutions for complex problems when the time is limited. Usually, numerical reasoning tests are both tests of "speed" and tests of "power." The goal of each category is to deliberately put the candidate under pressure to assess their performance level. However, both categories apply a different methodology to do so.
The "speed" test sees how many questions the candidate can answer correctly within a given period. Had it not been for the time limit, you would perhaps manage to answer all the questions correctly after working on them at length.
The true challenge lies in how fast you can work to perform well against the racing time and complete the test.
The numerical tests of "power", on the other hand, are even trickier. This is because they test the level of difficulty the candidate can manage. The questions are complex and require quite a lot of mathematical skills.
In such types of psychometric tests, questions keep rising in the level of difficulty as you move forward. This means that you have to cope with increasing difficulty of assignments within a limited period, which poses a real challenge for many candidates.
The level of the challenge per test can vary from easy to hard. You must expect to go through a very challenging test if you seek employment with consulting companies, accountancy firms, and banks. This is because such firms require competent and on-point numeracy skills and look for people who can work well under pressure.
A typical numerical reasoning test usually requires basic mathematics skills, so you do not have to remember complex formulas or write long proofs.
These tests contain questions that assess your knowledge of ratios, percentages, number sequences, data interpretation, financial analysis, and currency conversion. You need to be familiar with the following concepts to do well on the numerical test:
If you find yourself unfamiliar with these concepts and plan to sit for an upcoming numeracy test, you must brush up on the topics first.
Many multi-assessment publishers, including SHL, Kenexa, Saville Assessment, Talent Q, Cubiks, and others, are developing numerical reasoning tests.
You can expect to see psychometric tests as part of the application process for most financial industry jobs. The Big Four accounting and consulting firms, such as Deloitte, PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC), Ernst & Young (EY), and KPMG, as well as many consulting firms and banks, are using numerical reasoning tests and similar assessments to screen their candidates.
Apart from these, employers from other businesses and industries are increasingly turning to these tests for certain designations. Therefore, if you plan to apply for financial positions, handle accounts, or become a manager, you will most likely have to take such a test when you apply for a job.
In present times, most of the numerical reasoning tests take place online. However, some companies are still using paper-based versions. This step is one of the first stages of the recruitment process, and you typically receive an invitation for the test after you have cleared the initial screen of your resume and cover letter.
You most likely will receive a period of 7 to 10 days within which to take the test before the interview after getting a link. For this purpose, it is wise to prepare early and only apply for a job when you are confident of your preparation for the test attempt.
It is no surprise that candidates find numerical reasoning tests intimidating, especially given their difficulty and challenging time limits. However, there is nothing to fear if you take the proper steps to prepare yourself thoroughly before you attempt the test.
Here are a few helpful ways in which you can prepare for the test:
Here are some tips to help you ace the assessment tests.
The numerical reasoning tests allow employers to observe your competency of providing accurate decisions and information by working out with complex statistical or numerical data relative to the job context. With regular practice and time management, you will surely manage to perform well for any numeracy test you undertake.