PwC Career Unlocked – The Complete Guide [2024]

Price Waterhouse Coopers (PwC) is one of the ‘big 4’ consultancy and services firms worldwide.

As such, the company is highly selective with the candidates they hire and has created a thorough recruitment process to help find the best and brightest applicants.

Career Unlocked is the third step of the PwC hiring process – a game-based psychometric assessment that measures your cognitive and behavioural traits. This kind of gamified assessments is used by many leading companies, such as KPMG, Shell, and Capita.

The PwC Career Unlocked comprises 10 gamified tests; each evaluates several traits, competencies, and cognitive and behavioural characteristics, from learning abilities and pattern recognition to teamwork and risk tolerance.

Most candidates are usually thrilled and thankful for getting a game-based assessment invitation instead of the intimidating aptitude test. Little do they know that the gamified assessment can be much more complicated and trickier than a standard, straightforward psychometric test.

But don’t worry! JobTestPrep exclusive PrepPack is the only one to include accurate preparation, developed by our gamified tests experts especially for the unique PwC Career Unlocked games. Practice the PwC Career Unlocked games, learn which traits each measures and how to receive the best score that will prove you are the perfect match for the job.


Applying outside of the UK? check out the following pages:

PwC US | PwC Australia | PwC School Leavers | Strategy

Applying for the Big 4? Check out our designated pages:

EY | KPMG | Deloitte| Big 4 Tests Bundle

PwC Test Practice

Interactive, accurate practice for 9/10 Arctic Shores games:

  • Energy (Power Generator) Game
  • Direction (Arrows) Game
  • Balloons Game
  • Patterns Game (Guide Included)
  • Analysis Game
  • Team Sales Game
  • Tile Sequences Game
  • Tickets Game
  • Expression Game

Note: The Pattern and Analysis games are optional and will not always appear on the actual assessment.


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The PwC Career Unlocked Games

The PwC Career Unlocked is a series of 10 gamified assessments developed by Arctic Shores. Each game assesses a different ability or behavioural characteristics that reflect your personal and professional capabilities and preferences.

The assessment is taken via a mobile app (iOS or Android) or a computer (Windows or OS X).

The Career Unlock games are –


The Tile Sequence Game

An assessment of your memory, ability to balance automatic and controlled behaviour, and your response speed.

You will be presented with a tile board. When the screen darkens, a sequence of icons on the tiles will appear.

You need to memorize the sequence and repeat it in the correct order.

The game is adaptive, and the sequence will get longer and more challenging after every successful round.

The game is over after two losses.


arctic shores tile sequence game

Tip: To maximize your memory abilities, give each tile a number, and say it aloud when it lights up.

The Energy (Power Generator) Game

An assessment of your learning ability, pattern recognition, impulsivity, and risk tolerance.

You will be presented with four power generators; each can increase and drain the amount of restored power.

You need to produce and preserve as much power as possible by clicking on the generators. With every click, you take the chance to lose power instead of producing it.

The game is over after a certain number of clicks.



Tip: Remember that the order of the generators randomly changes between the rounds. Therefore, if you figured that the right generator is the most profitable in one round, it may be the left generator in your next round.

The Direction (Arrows) Game

An assessment of your attention, focus, and problem-solving abilities.

You will be presented with multiple rows of arrows that change direction.

You need to indicate the direction of the middle arrow regardless of the direction of the surrounding arrows.

As the game progress, it becomes more challenging; the arrows appear more quickly and can change into other symbols.

The game has 80 rounds.



Tip: Focus all your attention on the middle arrow to minimize your eye movement and thus reduce distractions to the minimum.

The Team Sales Game

An assessment of your risk-taking ability, decision-making, teamwork, and fairness.

You will be presented with a scenario in which you are a member of one of two teams. Both teams have launched the same product, and both want to make as much profit as possible.

You need to set a high or low price for your team, while the outcome of your decision depends on the amount the other team sets. For example, if both teams set a high price, both will receive a high profit.

The game has 12 rounds.



Tip: plan your strategy while considering the traits measured in this game, and how you want to be perceived.

The Tickets Game

An assessment of your attention, focus, and cognitive processing.

You will be presented with a set of two tickets; each has changing numbers and shapes.

You need to sort the tickets as quickly as possible by rules that change throughout the game.

The game has 80 rounds.



Tip: Pressing too early or too late is considered an error; thus, you need to be extra aware of both the figure presented to you and the rule you need to follow to make an accurate and fast choice.

The Balloon Game

An assessment of your pattern recognition, motivation, drive, and risk-taking ability.

You will be presented with a balloon that needs to be inflated. Every pump earns you money but also can make the balloon burst. You can save the money in a bank and restart the inflating.

You need to earn as much money as possible.

The game has 45 rounds.



Tip: Try to figure out the timing pattern of the balloons’ bursts.

The Face Game

An assessment of your emotional intelligence.

You will be presented with images of various facial expressions.

You need to identify which emotion the person in the image is displaying out of seven options.

The game has 50 rounds.



Tip: Pay attention to every fine detail and every facial feature; any of them can indicate the expressed emotion.

The Security Door Game

An assessment of your focus, patience, and reaction time.

You will be presented with a security safe.

You need to enter the passcode for the safe by stopping the rotating mark on the highlighted number.

The game has 20 rounds.



Tip: You can exit the game and move on to the next one at any point. However, because this test assesses your patience, try to maintain your resilience as long as you can.

The Pattern Game

An assessment of your pattern recognition, speed processing, and information processing.

You will be presented with squares containing several shapes that form a sequence when set together.

You need to identify the sequence pattern and choose the next in line.

The game has 20 rounds and a time limit of 17 minutes.



Tip: Every difference between the squares can be the key to identifying the pattern. Therefore, pay attention to every detail – the location of the shapes, their number, colouring, the direction of movement, and so on.

The Analysis Game

An assessment of your numerical abilities and information processing.

You will be presented with data displayed in charts, graphs, and tables, following a multiple-choice question.

You need to analyze the data to reach the answer to the question.

The game has a time limit of 18 minutes.



Tip: Under a restricted time limit and with a list of optional answers, a close estimation should be the correct one.

PwC Career Unlocked Report Card

Once you complete the assessment, you will receive a report card that summarizes your unique traits and competencies based on thousands of data points collected during your assessment. These points reflect your approach in each task and they are accumulated into 34 personality and cognitive traits divided into five sections –

  • Personal Style – your ability to interpret emotions and facial expressions.
  • Cognition – your ability to process information
  • Drive – your incentives, setbacks, and motivations.
  • Interpersonal Style – your approach and adjustments to social situations.
  • Thinking Style – your approach to problem-solving and decision-making.

This summary of your personality and cognitive traits reflects for your recruiters at PwC how well you fit for the position you applied for, both professionally and behaviorally, and how well you are aligned with the firm's core values, which include integrity, teamwork, care, and innovation.

PwC Career Unlocked App

To take the PwC Career Unlocked assessment, you will be requested to install an app on your phone or PC/Mac.

PwC will send you a username and password that will be valid for a limited time period.

You cannot use the app without these login credentials, and you cannot use it for training.

PwC Recruitment Process

The PwC hiring process varies between candidates, depending on the type of job or program for which they are applying, as well as the level of the position. Therefore, when preparing for the process, make sure to pay close attention to the information you receive from the recruitment team.

The typical application process involves the following stages:

  1. Filling out an online application form
  2. Completing the PwC Career Unlocked assessment
  3. Conducting a Career Conversation video interview
  4. Participating in a Career Focus Day at the PwC assessment centre

To learn about the recruitment process for other job levels, check out our School Leavers page.

If you are applying for a position in another country, you might be interested in our PwC Australia and US pages.

PwC Graduate Programme

PwC offers various jobs, especially for graduates, such as Audit Graduate Programmes, Actuarial Graduate Programmes, and Technology Graduate Programmes.

The recruitment process for the graduate positions is similar to the regular recruitment process, and it includes an online application, the Career Unlock online gamified assessment, the Career Conversation video interview, and a Career Focus Day at the PwC assessment centre, after which you will receive a job offer.

For most of the graduate programmes jobs, the recruiting is on a rolling basis, which means that there is no deadline to send in your application, and it will be reviewed until the position is filled. However, since PwC graduate positions are highly desired, the position you want may be quickly filled.

To reach the top of the applications pile quickly, you need not just take the Career Unlocked test as soon as possible but also pass it with flying colours.

PwC Career Conversation

The PwC Career Conversation is a video interview with pre-recorded questions. There won’t be an interviewer on the other side, and your response will be reviewed once completed. During the interview, you will be presented with questions and work-related scenarios, and you will record your responses. You will have time to make notes and prepare and organize your answer before recording them.

Similar to other job simulation tests, like the HSBC Job Simulation, and Deloitte Job Simulation, the PwC Career Conversation is not a live interview. However, it is a crucial stage in the recruitment process, and you need to be representative in both appearance and professionalism.

Focus Day at the PwC Assessment Centre

The PwC Career Focus is an assessment day that usually occurs at the workplace itself. It involves several stages in which you will be assessed on your interpersonal skills, capabilities, work ethic, and personality. The PwC assessment centre often includes interviews, PwC aptitude tests, group exercises, and more. 

Prepare for Your PwC Career Unlocked Assessment

Although game-based, the PwC Career Unlocked is like any other psychometric assessment in that it requires practice and proper preparation. To ace it and receive a high score, you must familiarize yourself with every game, its unique challenges, and measured traits.

JobTestPrep offers the only PrePack that is tailored especially for the PwC Career Unlocked Assessment with the following games –

  • Tile Sequences Game
  • Energy Game
  • Direction Game
  • Balloons Game
  • Team Game
  • Pattern Game (and interactive pattern study guide) 
  • Analysis Game
  • Ticket Game – coming soon
  • Face Game – coming soon
  • Security Door Game – coming soon

Soon to come: the full PwC Career Unlocked Assessment practice pack, with all the PwC Career Unlocked Assessment games.

More Free Practice

We at JobTestPrep find the assessment tests world highly diverse and fascinating. If you are looking to deepen your knowledge in the aptitude tests world, or you want some extra practice before your test, we've got you covered!

Check out these fantastic free practice tests (all are completely free):

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