Top 5…Tips for Surviving Assessment Centres

Stressed to the point of giving up and accepting a career as a dustbin man? Relax – The Drop is giving you our key top tips for surviving assessment centres.

internships students top tips


It’s that time of year when the dreaded question is beginning to be asked by family members, “So what are your plans for this summer?”
Aka “where are you going to be working this summer?” as the answer of lying on a beach in Thailand funded by the bank of mum and dad just doesn’t quite cut it.
As the rejections come flooding in, despite numerous hours of seemingly pointless applications and online tests stretching both our maths skills and ability to exaggerate the virtues of a seminar PowerPoint presentation, we have to maintain a ridiculous level of enthusiasm in order to keep the parents off our backs.
And then you get that email, inviting you to an assessment centre and suddenly realise you are actually going have to pretend you have had a lifelong desire to work for a company you in fact know very little about.
Stressed to the point of giving up and accepting a career as a dustbin man? Relax – here are our top tips for surviving assessment centres:
1. DRESS the part:
GIRLS – spare tights are a must: (having had a friend who uncomfortably remembers the embarrassment of laddering her tights in the toilets which is never a classy look) remember that while this is not an interview for a sexy secretary, a good flattering professional outfit is never going to harm your chances.
BOYS -a suit without fail and as your mother would say, remember to iron your shirt.
2. Wear a WATCH: 
In any exercise it is vital to know your time constraints and in group exercises even if you aren’t necessarily contributing the most, you can always assign yourself the role of the timekeeper!
3. Presuming you will have to leave Exeter and possibly stay somewhere overnight; DOUBLE CHECK your overnight bag:
It’s never ideal when you wake up the next morning finding that you have forgotten your deodorant resulting in numerous trips to the toilets to ‘freshen up’ and a fear of standing too close to your fellow applicants. It’s surprising how hot an interview room gets!
4. Don’t LIE:
This may appear tempting on any CV or application, but once at the assessment centre, if you were ‘aided’ in your online numerical test by a good friend (maths geek), you may struggle on the day.
5. Lastly, the best thing to remember is that this nerve-wracking process is a valuable experience above everything else and to stay CALM.
Welling up in your interview is not the best way of showing you can deal under pressure.