Microsoft Aptitude Test & Assessment Centre Preparation
Are you applying to Microsoft as a graduate or intern? As one of the world’s biggest companies, you can expect a rigorous recruitment process. The following article outlines what you can expect from the process with advice and resources to help you prepare with JobTestPrep!
Microsoft need no introduction. If you’re reading this, chances are that you will be doing so using a Microsoft product. Microsoft are always looking for innovation and to this end they are on the lookout for bright, young talent. For students, there are two entry routes, either in their graduate schemes or as a Microsoft intern. Internships divide into positions in technical, business and gaming departments. Graduate positions divide into technical, project management and business consulting and sales.
The Microsoft Recruitment Process:
Microsoft Online ApplicationThe first step in the recruitment process is filling out the online application form. Apart from filling in the ordinary details such as your educational background and qualifications, you will also be asked a few competency ones. For example:
- What are your career goals and why will working for Microsoft help you achieve them?
- Describe a time when you worked with a team that had different opinions to your own and the way you dealt with that?
- How did you guide the team towards the common goal?
Bear in mind when answering these questions that the skills that you introduce during these questions fit with the job that you are applying for. Your knowledge of Microsoft will be tested during this process so make sure that you include some of your knowledge of the subject.There is a 300 word limit to these answers so be as concise as possible. You also have the opportunity to upload your CV. Make your CV stand out with our CV builder.
Microsoft Online Aptitude TestsOnce you are successful in your online application you will be sent a link to complete the Microsoft aptitude tests. These tests are provided by CEB’s SHL. There are three possible tests you can face, depending on the type of position you are applying for. These include a situational judgement test, inductive reasoning and technical aptitude test.
Microsoft Situational Judgement TestThe Microsoft situational judgement test (SJT) is made up of questions based on possible situations that could arise whilst working at Microsoft. Each question has 4 possible answer choices and you have to select one of them. This test is used by the company to find out how you react to different situations and how you deal with them.. Practice SJT questions with our SJT practice tests to give yourself the best chance of success in this test.
Microsoft Inductive Reasoning TestThe Microsoft inductive reasoning test assess your ability to identify a pattern among a set of objects or numbers. There are ordinarily 24 questions and you are given 25 minutes to answer them. Each question has five images that follow a specific pattern that you must find. Using this pattern, you will be able to select the sixth image to solve the question. These questions can be tricky but by familiarizing yourself with practice inductive reasoning tests you will give yourself the best chance of success.
Microsoft Technical TestEven if you are applying to a technical scheme or internship, prior experience is not necessary to be hired. However, if you do have prior experience, you may be asked to sit a technical aptitude test to assess your knowledge and skill level. The Microsoft Technical Aptitude Test focuses mainly on coding so brush up on your technical skills before you sit the real thing.
The Microsoft Video InterviewAfter you have successfully completed the Microsoft aptitude test you will be invited to a video interview This interview is recorded, meaning that you receive questions through the computer, not from a live assessor. You have 3 minutes to answer each question and the interview lasts for 45 minutes, meaning you can expect 15 competency based questions. Some example questions are listed below:
- What do you know about Microsoft?
- What are your motivations in working for Microsoft?
- Tell me about a time when you worked in a team.
- If successful, what do you think your job will involve?
- When did you have a difference of opinion with someone you were working with and how did you deal with it?
- Who are the main competitors of Microsoft?
- What are the current market trends?
It is imperative to form well-constructed but not overly wordy answers and you can prepare answers to these questions using the STAR (situation, task, action, result) format . Put your interview skills to the test with our preparatory interview resources.
Microsoft Interactive Video AssessmentThis is a Skype-based, live interview which consists of 8 questions. The questions focus on three main categories: your personality fit for the company, questions on the program you have chosen and your competencies. You can prepare for this similarly to the video interview but remember this is a two-way interview so the interviewer can add or subtract questions. This may be a foreign concept to you and you can get some practice with our Skype-based interview preparation.
The Microsoft Assessment Centre Following a successful Skype interview, you will be invited to one of the Microsoft offices for an assessment day. This is an opportunity for Microsoft to meet you and you to meet Microsoft. Apart from the assessment activities, you will get a tour of the office and be able to interact with current interns and graduates to ask questions about your new potential work environment. You can prepare for this day both by doing practice exercises and by researching Microsoft. The assessment centre activities include a group activity, an individual case study and two one-to-one interviews.
Group ActivityIn this activity you are given a problem to solve using Microsoft products. In the first half of the activity you must analyse the problem and come up with a solution with the other members of your group. Remember that you are being monitored during this part so show off your teamwork skills. Make your voice heard but don’t make it a monologue. In the second part of the exercise you must present your issue and solution to the assessors. Expect questions about the choices you made as a team and why you made them. Get a feel for what to expect with our group activity practice.
Individual Case Study In the case study you are given an hour and half to complete a case study and presentation. You are provided with a laptop with many pieces of information to review and analyse. With this information you must come figure out and explain a solution which you must then present to the Microsoft assessors in a PowerPoint presentation. Assessors are looking for problem solving skills along with work efficiency so make sure to showcase these skills. Get some useful training with our case study practice.
Face to Face InterviewsDuring the Microsoft Assessment day you encounter two interviews, this time in person. . One interview is earlier in the day and focuses on competencies and motivation so you can expect similar questions to what you had in you previous interviews. The second interview comes at the close of the assessment day and is also competency-based but you can also expect questions regarding your thoughts on the activities and exercises and how you feel your performance went. Before the interview, try to think of a few good examples to use during the interview, such as a time you failed or describe a time you were part of a successful project. Also make sure to have a few Microsoft facts up your sleeve. As always, practice makes perfect and is especially important for interviews. Get the preparation you need with our practice interviews via Skype.
In SummaryMicrosoft in an exciting and dynamic place to work with many interesting departments and positions. Practicing the assessments that you will find throughout the selection process and gaining confidence will help you become a Microsoft success story!
Have any experience applying to Microsoft? Share it with us in the comments section below!
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