Korn Ferry Numerical Test Practice- Elements [2022]
Talent-Q test expert

Hi, I'm Tal, JobTestPrep's expert for the Talent-Q Test. If you have any questions after reading it, feel free to contact me at ask_tal@jobtestprep.com

What is the Korn Ferry Numerical Test?

The Korn Ferry Numerical Test is one of the Korn Ferry pre-employment assessments, originally developed by Talent-Q. This exam assesses your ability to quickly understand and analyze numerical data provided in tables or graphs, with most examples taken from the world of business and statistics. These questions require high-school-level math skills, and the ability to quickly solve difficult problems.

Korn Ferry's numerical test is widely used in the banking industry at major companies such as UBS, Bank of England, and Macquarie.

  • Questions: The test includes 12 questions in four sections. Each section presents information arranged in tables and/or graphs, followed by three multiple-choice questions pertaining to the presented data.
  • Time Limit: Each question has a time limit of 75-90 seconds so that you'll have 90 seconds to answer the first question in a set, and 75 seconds for each of the two following questions (just over 15 minutes total).
  • Difficulty Level: The numerical assessment is administered as part of the Talent-Q Elements series, or the Aspects series. The Elements numerical test is extremely difficult, whereas the Aspects numerical test is a bit easier as it is meant for entry-level roles.

Calculators are allowed and recommended, so make sure to get one before your test. In addition, it is recommended to use pen and paper to keep track of your calculations.

What Makes the TalentQ (Elements) Numerical Test So Difficult? 

  1. An Extremely Challenging Time Limit- On the Talent Q Elements numerical test, each question is timed at 75-90 seconds. No matter how fast you answer one question, the time limit for the next one will be just the same. So, the time pressure remains high throughout the test, with no option to save time by answering easier questions faster.

    Practising similar numerical questions is essential to sharpen your ability to quickly figure out the fastest way of calculating the answer on time. 

  2. Educated Guesses Are Impossible- Since answers are provided in a never-ending list of dozens of proximate options,  eliminating answers is not a possible strategy. Instead, calculating the solution is the only effective way to reach the right answer.

  3. If You're Doing it Right, it will Get Harder- The Talent Q numerical test is adaptive, meaning that your answer to a given question changes the level of difficulty of the following question. So, when you answer a question correctly, you’ll face an even harder question. Alternately, answering a question incorrectly means that the next question will be easier.


Talent Q Numerical Sample Questions

Quick recap: The Talent Q Elements Numerical Test is made of four sections with three questions each.

All sections consist of tables and/or graphs, followed by three multiple-choice questions (sometimes with as much as 30 choices). These require finding the relevant information scattered throughout the data and making the necessary calculations to reach the answer.

Example 1



Type of University















a) How many more or less employed graduates were there in 1990 than in 2000?

Answer & Explanation

✔️ The correct answer is "More, by 485"

Let's go through solving this question using our 4-step method.


1) Read the question carefully: 

From reading the question we can tell that we are looking for information about the group of employed graduates in two different years: 1990 and 2000.


2) Skim the table:

First, the headline lets you know that the entire table deals with graduates.

Second, there is a column for each for the years mentioned, which contains two other columns – one for employed and one for unemployed. You only care about the employed columns.

Note: The rows make a distinction between state and private universities, but as you weren’t asked about this distinction specifically, so don't be distracted by it. You need to take both into account.


3) Figure out the necessary calculation:

To determine how many more or less employed graduates there were in 1990 than in 2000, you should calculate the number of graduates employed in both 2000 and 1990 and subtract the figures. 

The number of employed in 1990 = Private + State = 1,475 + 1,610 = 3,085. 

The number of employed in 2000 = Private + State = 1,250 + 1,350 = 2,600.

As you can see, there were more employed graduates in 1990 than in 2000. 

4) Calculate The difference: in the number of employed in 1990 and 2000:

3,085 – 2,600 = 485.


And so, the answer is "more, by 485".


b) What proportion of the unemployed graduates in 2000 studied in private universities? (rounded to 2 decimal places)

Answer & Explanation

✔️ The correct answer is 0.45


1) Read the question carefully:

You can tell that all you need to look at is unemployed graduates in the year 2000.

Employed graduates and the year 1990 are not relevant to this question.


2) Skim the table:

Because this is the 2nd question in the set, you should already know the table well enough to go straight to the location of the information you need.

This step might be harder in more complex questions with bigger, more intricate tables.


3) Figure out the necessary calculation:

To find the proportion of the unemployed graduates in 2000 who studied in private universities, you should determine the number of unemployed graduates in 2000 in private universities and divide that number by the total number of unemployed graduates in the same year.


4) Calculate:

Add the total number of unemployed graduates in 2000:

125 + 150 = 275

Divide the number of unemployed from private universities by the above total:

125/275 = 0.45

The answer: The proportion of unemployed graduates who studied in private universities is 0.45.

Example 2

Employees per sector in the UK
Sector % of employees among sectors
Year 1 Year 2 Year 3
Agriculture 15 10 20
Manufacturing 60 55 60
Services 0 5 3
Marketing 17 15 12
Self-employed 8 5 5
Sector Median Salary Year 1 % of change in median salary from previous year
Year 2 Year 3
Agriculture £21,000  5  5
Manufacturing £26,000  2 -1
Services £27,000  0 -9
Marketing £34,000  2  10
Self-employed £12,000 -6  3
Annual number of employees
Year 1 Year 2 Year 3
50,000,000 70,000,000 80,000,000
Income Tax Rates
0 - £15,000 £15,001 - £32,000 £ 32,001 - 150,000
10% 20% 30%

a) Assuming the tax rate applies to the entire salary, in which sector did the number of employees increase the most from year 1 to year 2?


Answer & Explanation

✔️ The correct answer is "Manufacturing"

1) Read the question carefully:

According to the question, you need to scan the tables for information regarding the number of employees in different sectors across the first 2 years only. Anything else would be irrelevant.


2) Skim the table:

You can see that each row represents a sector; “year 1” and “year 2” appear in 2 places, but only the top part of the green table refers to the number of employees;

You can also see that the green table only discusses percentages of employees, and that it’s the bottom black table that gives you absolute numbers.


3) Figure out the necessary calculation:

To reach the answer, you must determine the number of employees for each sector in both year 1 and 2.

Then deduct the number of of employees in year 1 from year 2 to determine the difference


4) Calculate:

To do this you'll need to combine information from the green and black tables.

And since the employment figures in the green table are given in percentages, you'll need to translate ratios into absolute numbers using the the info in the black table.

Note that the annual number of employees differs from year to year.

Do this as follows:

talent q numerical reasoning table question answer explanation


The answer (highlighted in red) shows that the biggest increase in employees was 8.5 million - in the manufacturing sector.

Try a timed version of similar numerical reasoning questions:

Free Talent-Q Numerical Reasoning Test

Complete the test to get a predicted score, then review your answers.

Test Time 1:30 min
Questions 5
Pass Score 8

How to Solve Talent Q Numerical Questions- A 4-Step Method 

To make the best use of the short time given for each question, and manage to solve it before time runs out, use the following four steps:

  1. Read each question carefully- The tables and graphs found in numerical tests consist of much more information than is needed to find the right answer.

    Instead of going over pointless information designed to distract you, read over the question carefully to determine exactly what you’re looking for.

  2.  Skim the table in search of keywords- Look at the headlines of the rows and columns to locate the relevant information you are asked to find in the question. 

    For example, you may be asked to find the number of employees from a certain sector over a designated period. You will need to look for the data below the suitable titles in such a case.

  3. Figure out the necessary calculation- Now that you know where the relevant information is, try to figure out the arithmetic operation needed to get to the answer.

    For example, consider whether you need to compare two rows, add up different cells or find the average of a specific column.

  4. Calculate and find the best answer- Since you’re allowed to use a calculator, this last step will be relatively easier than the previous ones. Simply use the information you’ve already gathered to carefully execute the calculation and choose the right answer.

Note: Some of the high-difficulty-level questions require numerous calculations to reach the answer, taking a longer time. If you run out of time on such questions, keep in mind that even encountering them means you’re doing a great job overall.

Talent-Q Tips

Top 5 Korn Ferry Numerical Test Tips 

  1. Don’t leave questions for later- Since you will not be able to go back, don’t skip over any question thinking you will get to it later. Instead, try answering each question to the best of your ability within the time limit.
  2. Use your time wisely
    Since questions come in sets of 3 (per table), the first one will take more time while you’re familiarizing yourself with the given data.

    Use this to your advantage and make the subsequent questions easier for yourself by first trying to understand how to read the table.

  3. Don’t try to guess
    This test offers too many answer options for guessing to be effective, so don’t read over all the answer options to find the answer you think sounds the best (there can be up to 30 options!).

    Instead, find the most useful data, do your calculation, and then find which answer choice yours matches.

  4. Stay focused on your goal
    You may get distracted by all the additional information in the given tables.

    Try to read the question thoroughly to find the relevant statistical data and ignore the rest of the unnecessary information.

  5. Simulate your test as accurately as possible: Having tried and practised Talent Q Numerical questions in a test-like environment can give you focus and calm during your actual assessment.

    We've developed tailored numerical practice tests with specifically designed to simulate the Korn Ferry/ Talent Q numerical test. This will provide you with the tools you need to prepare effectively for this test and the unique challenges presented.


How to Significantly Improve Your Score Within 5-6 days

 Most candidates only have about a week before taking the Talent-Q test. From our experience, six days are just the right amount of time to prepare efficiently and effectively and see a better result. This is an optimal timeline based on our full preparation pack:

Day 1

  • Start off by taking one Elements Numerical Test: use this timed simulation to diagnose your strengths and shortcomings. Try to assess your weaker spots, whether it's elements of the graphs/ tables or certain calculations you find confusing or not intuitive.
  • Broaden your search for skills to improve by trying the first 3-5 questions from each question type in the "Numerical Drills", then jump to the test results page to review your answers.
  • Go over the study guides and video tutorials which offer tips and solving strategies explaining all aspects of the test. Dedicate most of your time to the subjects you find most difficult according to your diagnosis in the previous two steps.

You should go back to the guides during your preparation to refresh your memory and make sure you are using all the tools they provide. 

Day 2

Practice questions you find most challenging ("Numerical Drills" section). Complete each drill, then review your answers to learn from your mistakes (you don't have to yet time yourself).


Day 3-4

Start practising mini-tests in timed mode ("Numerical Extra Practice" section). It's time to learn to deal with the pressure of the time constraint you’ll face when taking the real test. This will give you insight into how to answer questions accurately and quickly.

Take half the tests and then take a breather. It is best to go through the material at a reasonable pace. Rushing through questions is not an effective way to study.

Day 5-6

  • Diagnose your progression. Take a full test from your  ‘Elements Numerical’ tests. Reassess your weak points, then go back to the guides to see if there are tips to help you improve in those areas. Also, review previous questions of these types again to see if your mistakes follow a pattern.

  • Take all remaining mini-tests. Be sure to spend a considerable part of your time reviewing your mistakes and learning how to use our tool kit to avoid needless mistakes. Make sure to abide by the time limit.

  • Simulate your actual test. Finally, take your last full Talent-Q Numerical practice test to simulate both question types and time-limit on the actual exam. 

    Turn off your phone, remove any distractions, and try to emulate conditions. For instance, if you are taking the real test online, you can create the exact same conditions: place, time of day, computer model, etc.

Don't Lose Time! Continue the Practice You Started

Continue Practicing to Maximize Your Score

See What's Included

9 full test simulations & 100s more extra practice questions.

✓ 3 fully Immersive Talent Q numerical tests

✓ 14 additional numerical reasoning practice tests

✓ 1 Talent Q Elements Diagnostic Test

✓ 3 fully Immersive Talent Q verbal tests

✓ 7 additional verbal reasoning practice tests

✓ 3 fully Immersive Talent Q logical Tests

✓ 1 extra Logical Reasoning practice set

All Tests are timed and come with score reports, answer explanations and solving tips.

✓ 22 numerical, verbal and logical video tutorials and study guides

✓ Money back guarantee

How is the Korn Ferry (TalentQ) Numerical Test Scored? 

Your raw score in the Talent Q Elements Numerical test is comprised of all the correct answers you have accumulated, while taking the difficulty level of each question into account.  

Then, your score is compared to the appropriate comparison group of your employers’ choosing.

This means that it is not enough to do well on the test; you must surpass your competitor’s scores as well.

Talent-Q Free Test

Learn more about Talent Q test results and score reports.


1)  What is the passing score for the Talent Q Numerical test?

Although there is no pass/fail score for this test, your score is compared to that of other candidates applying for the same position.

Usually you have to score at or above the 80th percentile in order to continue in the application process.

2) Are calculators allowed?

Yes! Calculators, pens and scrap paper are all allowed. So make sure to bring them with you before starting the test.

3) Can this test be taken more than once?

Usually, no. If you are applying for a specific role, you will only have one chance to take the Talent Q Numerical test during the hiring process.

4) What is the duration of the Talent Q Numerical test? 

You will be given 90 seconds to answer the first question of each set. Afterwards you will 75 seconds to answer the next two per set.  

5) What does the Talent Q Elements Logical test consist of? 

The test includes four sets of data, given as either a table or graph. Each set includes 3 multiple-choice questions which can be solved using the given data.

There are 12 questions on the test, each one containing up to 30 or more answer options.

6) Can the skills measured by the Talent Q test be improved?  

Yes. When you prepare with the right practice materials you are sure to boost your numerical reasoning skills and become more familiar with how to locate the relevant data and plug in the correct equation.

Korn Ferry, the company that administers the Talent-Q tests say as much on their website:

"Putting time into practising the kinds of questions you may face in ability tests is the best way of maximising your performance and boosting your confidence."

We can help you do just that - check out our tailored test prep.

7) What if I am not able to answer some questions in the allotted time? 

Since you will be scored based on the amount of questions you got correct, as well as the difficulty level of each one, you don’t have to worry about answering every single question.

8)  Where will the Talent Q Numerical test be held? 

You will be invited to take the test either at the company’s location or online in the comfort of your own home (or any other quiet place).

9)  Is the Talent Q Elements Numerical test difficult?  

Because the test questions are adaptive, the difficulty level of the test adjusts depending on your performance.

10) Does the test provider use negative marking?  

No. This is  because your potential employer wants to measure your skills and reasoning abilities by evaluating the extent of what you know.

11) Are all the questions weighted equally? 

No. This is because the test is adaptive, so every question may have a different level of difficulty.

You will be scored based on the difficulty of the questions you answered correctly. 

12) Which employers use Talent Q Numerical test during their hiring process? 

There are a variety of employers who use this test in their recruitment process to identify strong candidates. 

Several well-known companies who use this test include: SAB Investments, Frontline and Alinta.

13) Can the Talent Q Numerical test be taken before submitting a job application?

Usually not, since most recruitment processes start with the submission of an application

14) Is it okay to ask questions during the test? 

You will most likely not get a chance to ask questions during the actual test.

Yet when you are invited to take the test initially, you can ask basic questions regarding the exam.

15) Are there breaks during the test? 

Most tests do not allow for taking breaks during the duration of the exam. Take care of everything you need before you begin.  


Korn Ferry, Talent Q, and other trademarks are the property of their respective trademark holders. None of the trademark holders are affiliated with JobTestPrep or this website.