So, you’ve been invited to an Assessment Centre- you may only be one step away from your first career. This can naturally be a very nerve-wracking time for anyone, let alone someone straight out of Uni! However, there’s really no need to be scared! Here are some top tips to calm your nerves and help you to be successful!

1.Be prepared.

Do your research into the company; what they do, how they do it, where they operate and what impact they have. Also, do your research into the role; actually understand what it is that you are there to become. If you are looking into Recruitment for example, bear in mind that it’s a competitive market looking for resilience and try to show that in your tasks and presentations.

2. Be yourself.

Personality means a lot to most businesses! Would you hire someone who was dull and unable to keep up a conversation in a quiet room? Me neither! Whether it’s during chillout time between tasks, during preparation or, as you are performing the task asked of you show who you are. Frequently when we run Assessment Centres candidates tell us that they are really energetic and passionate about recruitment but, when they turn up on the day, display none of it! At the end of the day- if you have been invited to partake in an Assessment Centre, the company are interested in pursuing you, so be you.

3. Be punctual.

The age-old advice of being 10-15 minutes early for an interview definitely still stands! This is for multiple reasons. Firstly, it symbolises to the interviewer that you are genuinely interested in the role. Secondly, it gives you time to calm any initial nerves. Finally, it is a great way to ensure that you will be able to start on time through any travel issues you may face.

4. Be a collaborative leader.

There are often both group tasks and individual tasks involved in an Assessment Centre. When working as a group you want to ensure that you are seen but, that you are able to take on other people’s ideas too. Your potential employer wants to see your skills but, they also want to be able to work with you and see that you will be coachable- overshadowing everyone doesn’t really symbolise that.

5. Be well presented.

Come dressed appropriately for an interview. If it’s in the City, that means a suit or a smart equivalent (NOTE; not jeans and a beanie). Try to look smart throughout; make sure you take your coat off when you’re indoors for example. This is especially important if you are going after a Client facing role.

6. Be present.

Obviously, be physically present. What this means more is to be mentally present. It’s all well and good to show face and say the right things at the right times but, you’re not going to be memorable doing just that.  Engage with the interviewers/ those running the assessment centre. Actually ask relevant questions when there is a chance and be interested in hearing the answer. When you think about it, they are deciding whether they want you to join the team but, you should also be using this time to decide if you really want to work with them too! Having some energy and being present will really help you to be the candidate that no-one forgets!

So yes, Assessment Centres do sound terrifying but, they really shouldn’t- they give you the best chance to impress directly! Just remember, the employer has invited you in because they are interested in seeing you and moving you further in the process.  Try your best to impress and follow the simple steps above and you’ll be laughing….all the way home with a job offer.