Centrica PLC is a fully integrated energy company providing both upstream as well as downstream services. The Centrica graduate scheme has many different paths lasting from two to four years. Some of these paths are through Centrica while others operate through its subsidiary British Gas. Places on the Centrica graduate program are few and competition is high. Therefore it is imperative to know how to produce a great performance throughout the application process.
As opposed to many other application forms, the online application form is a very important part of the Centrica application process. As well as entering in all your personal information and qualifications, you will also have to answer a number of competency questions. These questions are designed to help you show your ability levels in a regular everyday setting.
In your answers you need to demonstrate that you have Centrica key competencies and have put them into practice throughout your life so far. The competencies are known in Centrica as “Leadership behaviours”. They are:
You need to show that you possess these qualities and incorporate them into your answers. You can do this by using the STAR method where you explain how you have used these competencies through a real-life situation.
Once you have completed the Centrica PLC online application form you will then have three separate online tests.
The Centrica online aptitude tests are from Criterion Partnership’s Utopia range of tests. In the case of aptitude tests, preparation is key. Not only can you familiarise yourself with the questions, but you can also get a feel for what the real test is like. The Centrica online tests include numerical and verbal reasoning and a personality test.
On this test you are given 18 minutes to answer 20 questions. You are presented with numerical data in various forms such as tables, graphs, and ratios. Calculators are permitted during this test. This tests looks at both your numerical ability as well as how well you work under time constraints. Master the test with the aid of our Utopia-style numerical practice tests.
Like the numerical reasoning test, this test is taken under severe time constraints with 16 questions to be answered in 9 minutes. You are presented with a paragraph of information which is usually related to the energy field. You are then presented with 3 statements regarding the text and you must determine whether the statements are true, false, or cannot say. These tests assess your ability to understand written information. Get ahead by practicing Utopia-style verbal reasoning tests online.
This is the final of the three online tests. On this test you are given a variety of different scenarios with a choice of possible reactions. The purpose of this test is to see if your personality matches the competencies that Centrica deems necessary to have in order to work for them. Help yourself prepare for these tests by learning more about them on our dedicated personality test page.
Following the completion of the tests, Centrica reviews your scores alongside your application. Those who are successful are invited to the next stage.
This telephone interview is split up into two different stages.
In the first stage of the interview you are asked some motivational questions to assess whether you really want to work for Centrica PLC. Some Centrica interview questions for this section are:
The next stage of the interview is made up of competency-based questions. You must bear in mind that you are not allowed to give the same examples that you have already used in your online application form. Some example questions are:
It is very important to stress here that the interviewer wants to hear the buzz words of the company, namely the leadership behaviours that you possess. Get some tips for how to prepare for this on our interview page.
If you do well enough at this stage of the application process you will be invited to attend an assessment centre at one of their offices.
This is a whole day assessment centre where you through a variety of different tasks. It bears repeating that throughout the day you are tested not only on the tasks themselves, but also on how you apply yourself to them. Therefore, always remember to try and integrate the Centrica Leadership qualities throughout the day as much as you can. The tasks are:
This is a 45 minute interview with competency, motivational, and technical questions. The interviewer goes through any number of the competencies and ask you to demonstrate where you have shown this trait in the past. Go through the list of competencies and think of a real life example you can give.
In this task you are given a letter of complaint by a customer as well as lots of information surrounding the topic. You then have to compose an email response to the customer based on the information you have been given. Remember in this task that you should show your competencies and that you should be clear as well as concise. You will be given approximately one hour for this. Give yourself a boost with our written exercise practice pack.
In this exercise, each member of the group is given about 8 pages of information relating to a topic of your application. You then have to plan and make a joint presentation to the assessors. Bear in mind that even if you have great ideas, if you don’t speak up and make yourself heard it will be impossible to assess you. Therefore, you have to make sure you are heard and are vocal throughout the process. This task lasts for one hour and a half. Prepare for the group exercise with our preparation pack.
The presentation stage is for applicants to the engineering programme. Here you will be given 45 minutes to go over lots of information about a work related subject that Centrica are involved in and create a presentation for it. You must create a presentation on the subject and may be asked to build a structure. This presentation lasts 10 minutes with further questioning afterwards so prepare to answer any questions the assessors might throw at you. For information on how to create a great presentation have a look at our dedicated page.
In this task you are presented with an issue within your potential field of work. You are given 15 minutes to think of a plan of how to resolve the issue. One example is dealing with an irate customer who is having problems with their bill. You need to present your findings and show the assessor what you are going to do. This mirrors a meeting where your manager asks you to do a certain task within a given time frame. It is your job to show how you will accomplish this. Get a head start on these skills with our role play exercise practice.
Centrica is a great place to begin your career. Although it can be challenging, with the right preparation and motivation, you will be able to show your best during the recruitment process. Good luck.