How to shine in an Assessment Centre

Performing well in a temporary job interview requires a different approach to the one you will take when interviewing for a permanent vacancy. As Candidate Manager I have put thousands of candidates through Assessment Centres and know the things that can really make you stand out amongst the crowd.

Be aware of body language
You’re always being watched in an assessment centre, so do some research on body language and make sure you perform throughout the time there. Don't fidget, sit up straight, make eye contact and smile. Show you are a confident and nice person to be around.

Be enthusiastic
Approach all the tasks with an open mind and show interest in your fellow candidates. You'd be amazed at how many people act like sulky teenagers at an assessment centre, so make yourself stand in a positive light by smiling and being passionate about the products you’ll be selling!

Be prepared
If you are prone to nerves, being prepared will help alleviate some of the jitters. In Assessment Centres you are judged on various tasks, not just on how well you interview, so if you tend to get nervous in interviews remember that you can still shine in the tasks. Be prepared to discuss brands that you are passionate about and why you think you'd do a great job selling them, so have a think about this beforehand.

Be yourself
It may sound trite, but be yourself on the day. Assessment centres are far more involved than normal interviews, and it is more difficult to put on an act. Sometimes people try to act over confident which doesn’t always come across well.

References – your secret weapon
Hiring a temp is a potential risk to any business. They’re inviting you to join their business at short notice in client facing positions.

One of the most powerful tools available to you will be the words of a previous employer who would be prepared to speak on your behalf.

As you are going through a recruitment agency, ask us to speak to one of your most recent managers. If we get good feedback, then we will be more inclined to promote you for the role ahead of someone else.

Providing us with all your reference details is so important – these should go back at least 3 years.

Make pre-screening a smooth process
Hirers need to know that they’re engaging with temps who have been suitably vetted. Make sure you can provide us with a copy of your passport. This verifies that you are legally allowed to work in the country of origin.

Do's and don'ts of assessment centres
• Do prepare and research as much as you can
• Do dress professionally
• Do smile and introduce yourself
• Do bring all the relevant documents
• Do act enthusiactically, friendly and professionally
• Don't let everyone else do all the talking
• Don't constantly talk over others