It’s not easy landing an administrative job these days. The competition is fierce and companies have tons of candidates with experience and degrees to fill each job.
To get the best of the best, some firms and HR divisions have resorted to a variety of culling techniques. Among these is the Administrative Assessment Test. These are becoming increasingly popular, especially today when too many candidates are chasing too few jobs. It’s simply a way to weed out average performers.
After you submit your resume and survive the interview (not an easy task these days), you may be asked to take one of these assessment tests. They help employers evaluate your skill level in various clerical areas. During these tests, you may be asked to perform any number of clerical tasks.
If you're applying for a position in administrative support, you might be asked to demonstrate your skills in typing, data entry, spelling, transcription, shorthand, filing, ten-key, coding and proofreading. You may also be asked to show your comfort level with specific software and email programs. Your familiarity with AV systems and Internet protocols may also be evaluated. In addition, there are employment screening tests that help identify top-performers for administrative assistant and executive assistant jobs. These tests evaluate a candidate for:
- Cognitive Abilities
- Organizational Skills
- Following of Rules
- Emotional Stability
- Team Orientation
The thing to remember here is that even if you don't score high on these tests, your solid resume, good interview and admin experience may still get you that job (needless to say, you will have to pass all reference checks). Chances are, you'll undergo some training anyway, since each company has different protocols and procedures for their admin staff.
If you're still worried about passing your assessment test, you can brush up on your skills by taking practice tests. Sites like measuremyskills.com offer practice tests you can take for anywhere from $10 and $20. You might also consider taking a college course in typing, shorthand or keyboarding.
Keep in mind that the key to landing any job is your personality and your ability to get along and work well with your boss and co-workers. So while a high admin assessment test score may get you in the door, whether you keep your job depends on how well you “play with others.”