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Royal Mail is one of the most recognisable brands in the UK. The company is going through a massive transformation programme, shifting from letters to parcels and special items, and providing opportunities for graduates now and into the future. The recruitment process for the graduate programme has changed recently, so this guide follows the new process for graduate recruitment. Applicants for other jobs at Royal Mail will find this guide useful for the elements included in their own recruitment.
There are 9 programmes for graduates at Royal Mail, following two routes. The first route contains Operations, Logistics, Engineering and other more technical areas. The second route is for corporate functions, for example, Commercial or Technology. You can only apply to one, so make sure to research in advance which one you are most suited to. There are different competencies required for each role, and you should demonstrate your ability to do them throughout the application process.
Detailed below are the various stages of the Royal Mail recruitment process. You may be asked to only take a few of them, so you should double check your application before preparing. The possible stages of the Royal Mail application process are:
Upon choosing the correct scheme that you wish to apply for, you need to complete the Royal Mail application form. This is the first step in the Royal Mail recruitment process and it is important to make a good impression from the word go. There are some differences in the application form if you are applying to the Royal Mail graduate scheme but on the whole the process is thus:
You are given the opportunity to enter your previous job experiences, what your role was and what you gained from it. There is plenty of space to complete your answer and it should include not only what you did, but also how you grew from it in relation to the job you are applying for. For example, if you are applying for a managerial position you have to demonstrate in your answer that you have the skills and have shown them in the past.
There are also a number of different Royal Mail application questions as part of the online application. They generally have to do with your willingness to travel, often difficult work hours as well as why you want to work for Royal Mail. Use this opportunity to show why you really want to work for Royal Mail and how well you will fit in.
Once you have completed the Royal Mail application form you will be invited to take the Royal Mail aptitude tests. These tests are administered by Talent Q and you will get a direct link from your email account to take the online tests.
The next step of the Royal Mail recruitment process is the Royal Mail online tests. These tests are supplied by the Talent Q group and there are four possible tests that you may receive from the Royal Mail assessment test battery. Whilst any role from supervisors and up will be taking the Talent Q Elements tests, all other roles with be taking tests from the Aspects series. The majority of the tests you will sit are Talent Q Elements test, but you will also be asked to take a Talent Q Dimensions personality test.
This test is given to every candidate and there is no time limit to it. You will be presented with a series of different statements and you have to rate them in terms of trueness to your personality. This is on a five-step scale with the most liked being “very true” and the lowest level to choose is “completely untrue”. By practising these tests, learning how they work, and the psychology behind them, you will be able to answer these questions precisely the way Royal Mail wants you to.
On this test, you will be given a postcode or full address that you have to compare to many different but similar ones. This tests your accuracy as well as your ability to work quickly and under pressure. This test is particularly useful for those applying for a post carrier position.
On this Talent Q numerical test, you will be presented with some different numerical data, generally in the form of tables and some instructions relating to these figures. You will have to answer questions relating to these figures. You will have 90 seconds for the first question with each subsequent question giving you less time.
On this Royal Mail verbal assessment test you will be presented with two or three paragraphs relating to a sometimes esoteric topic. You have to analyse the text and answer the question for which you are given six different options. The average completion time for this Talent Q Royal Mail test is 12 minutes thus giving you only a short amount of time to prove yourself worthy of the next stage. Make sure you practise these tests so as not put yourself at a disadvantage.
Most candidates will also be requested to take this 12-minute logical reasoning test. This is a diagrammatical test that assesses your ability to form abstract rules and apply them to a series of patterns. Each question contains a logical sequence will one step missing along the way. You have to select the missing shape from the different options. Find out how we can help you with this logical reasoning test here.
JobTestPrep was founded with the goal of helping job seekers worldwide overcome the often-daunting task of successfully passing company assessment tests.Our specially designed tests help you understand the tests you are likely to take and prepare you for your Royal Mail online tests and assessments.
Following a good performance on the Royal Mail aptitude tests, recruitment for many roles at Royal Mail, including the graduate scheme, have an assessment centre as the final stage in the application process. There are a variety of possible activities and what you will encounter depends on the role you are applying for. Your correspondence with Royal Mail’s recruitment team should tell you what is included in your assessment centre. This page reviews many of the common activities along with advice on how you can best prepare yourself.
The Royal Mail assessment centre may include:
|Royal Mail Graduate Scheme||Logistics Management Trainee Scheme|
|Case Study - Group Discussion and Individual||Case Study - Group Discussion and Individual|
|Written Exercise||Written Exercise|
|Group Exercise||Role Play|
The case study at the Royal Mail assessment centre is done in two stages: a group discussion and an individual written exercise.
In the group discussion, you are put into groups of three applicants and given a packet of information to review. This information is related to the post office service so you may, for example, be given a brief about how best to deal with high postal traffic in the holiday season.
In the individual written exercise, you must use the same information and continue working on the case study. For the graduate scheme, once you have developed a full business plan, your task is to create a presentation which explains your ideas to the assessors in the clear and creative way.
Depending on the role you have applied for, you may also need to take part in a second group exercise, which focuses more on your team working skills and requires you to create something together with the other applicants in your group. For example, you may be asked to draw a combined picture of a landscape. This isn’t a test of how well you can draw; it is about how well you can deal with a team. There is only one big piece of paper and you have to show your ability to do your bit as well as making space for others. Find out more with the JobTestPrep group exercise guide.
In this section of the assessment centre day, you will be given a brief containing information relating to your chosen field. For example, if you have chosen the management scheme you may be asked to participate in a role play where you have to deal with a customer whose package has got lost in the post. You have to demonstrate your ability to empathise with the customer, showing that you care about the package and use the information in the brief to answer their queries and complaints. This is with one assessor who will act as the customer.
All Royal Mail applicants have a personal interview which lasts approximately one hour. It is mainly competency based but it also includes some technical and possibly brainteaser questions. When answering these questions it is important to try and incorporate the key competencies for your chosen programme. This shows that you have the skills that they want and also the desire and motivation to succeed.
It is important to try and be relaxed and confident throughout this interview and our free guide to interviews PDF can give you some pointers on how to do so. Looking for more in-depth preparation? Practice with JobTesPrep's interview preparation package.
With the right preparation under your belt for the Royal Mail aptitude tests and assessment centre, you are on the right path to receiving that job offer. Throughout the recruitment process, make sure you have a clear idea of what the position you are applying for entails and why it’s the right job for you. A good performance in the assessments and confidence in the interviews is your key to success.
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