Sky Assessment Centre, Online Aptitude Tests and Interview Preparation
Applying for a job with Sky? Sky offer jobs across a whole range of professions, for graduates, apprentices, interns, and experienced hires. This article will guide you through the recruitment process stage by stage and point you in the right direction to practice materials and assistance.
Jobs at Sky cover a variety of disciplines from programming and technology to finance and marketing. For graduates, Sky offer several graduate schemes under three streams: Business Programmes, Software Engineering Academy, and Technology. The application process for Sky graduates involves several testing stages, all of which will ask you to show you have a real understanding of what Sky do and a passion for the area you’re interested in joining. This article will go through the recruitment process for the graduate scheme as this is the most comprehensive. Applicants for apprenticeships, placements, work experience or other tracks will find the relevant sections of this article useful.
The recruitment process will contain slightly different questions and tests depending on the programme you are applying to, but the basic structure is the same.
Sky have a core set of behaviours they look for in applicants and the people who work with them. You are expected to demonstrate that you have these skills throughout the entire graduate recruitment process in order to be considered for a job.
- Clear direction – everyone in the company knows what they are doing and why.
- Change and improvement – always looking for a better way to do something.
- Feedback and development – learning from our experiences and from feedback to move forward.
- Collaboration and teamwork – good team working skills are essential at Sky. The aim is to work together to achieve more.
- Empowerment – trust in each other to do their very best.
- Do the right thing – acting with integrity is vital in keeping the trust and respect of customers and colleagues.
The application form is the first way Sky will get to know anything about you, so make sure that they like what they are reading. The form asks not only for the usual education and employment information, but also contains several competency based questions. These questions have a word limit of 250 words, or 1,000 characters. Although Sky offer multiple graduate programmes, you can only apply for one graduate programme at a time, so take the time to research which programme is the right one for you.
Some tracks will include specific questions about their area of expertise, but the generic questions on a Sky application form are:
- What is it that attracts you about working for Sky?
- What do you think are the key priorities for the business area department at Sky?
- In your opinion, what attributes and behaviours would make someone a success at Sky?
- Please give an example of a time when you have had multiple deadlines and explain what you did to meet your targets.
- Please also include details of what you would do differently next time.
- Before you start, be clear on why you want to work for Sky, and specifically for the role you are applying for. This needs to be reflected throughout your application process.
- The application form asks questions about how you fit with their desired behaviours.
- Think of examples to use against these behaviours before you start.
- The questions are word limited, so concentrate on the points that make the biggest impact.
Online Aptitude TestsIf your application is progressed from the application form in Finance, Strategy, Marketing and Software Engineering Academy only, you are invited to sit an online test. Which ones you do will depend on the programme you applied to. The Software Engineering Academy has a Sky specific coding task but the other business programmes use tests designed by Capp and SHL.
Practicing for all tests is important so that you can be put through to the next stage. JobTestPrep have created practice packs specifically aimed at SHL style tests. See here for more information about our packs.
SHL Verbal Reasoning TestIn the verbal reasoning test, Sky are looking to see how fast you can understand, process and analyse verbal information. The test consists of 30 questions based on several passages of writing, to be answered in under 20 minutes. You have to evaluate the truthfulness of the statements based on the information in the passage. Verbal reasoning tests require you to show the skills that you can quickly process information, and then answer questions on it, all under time pressure. Practice is key to getting a good score on these tests, and JobTestPrep’s SHL style verbal reasoning practice packs are on hand to help you do just that.
SHL Numerical Reasoning TestThe numerical reasoning test assesses your ability to analyse and interpret numerical data. Information is provided on graphs and tables, for you to answer questions based on this data. There are usually 18 questions to answer in 17 to 25 minutes depending on the difficulty of the test. You may use a calculator in these tests, which can bring its own challenges. JobTestPrep’s guide to using calculators in tests can help. JobTestPrep have also created SHL style numerical reasoning practice packs. See how these can help you prepare effectively for the test.
SHL Logical Reasoning TestLogical reasoning tests examine your logical thinking without using words or numbers. Instead they use images, in which you need to identify the pattern in order to pick out the next shape in the sequence. JobTestPrep’s SHL logical reasoning practice packs can give you tips on how to recognise patterns and get the right answers on a test.
Sky Telephone InterviewIf you are successful in the early stages, you are next invited to a telephone interview. This interview is short, around 20 minutes, and is a conversation about why you want to work with Sky, and why you have chosen your particular track. The interview will ask similar questions to those on the application form, but asked in a different way. Sky’s Finance programme complete the interview over Skype but the content of the interview and format remains the same.
Don’t forget to have your application form, CV, any questions you want to ask, and a notepad and pen in front of you when you sit down to take the call. They will focus on topics such as teamwork; creative solutions; working under pressure; working with customers. A particular emphasis in the interview will be your problem solving skills. Sky are looking for you to give examples of when you have displayed the behaviours they are looking for. Prepare some examples ahead of the interview, and don’t forget to use the STAR method to do this. For more information about the STAR method, see JobTestPrep’s STAR interviews information page. The best way to prepare for an interview is to actually have one with a trained assessor who not only provides you with a mock interview but also with important feedback therefore helping you to improve your performance. Check out our skype interview preparation pack.
Sky Interview QuestionsSome of the questions asked at Sky interviews include:
- What recent Sky innovations have stood out to you?
- Talk me through the thinking behind the most recent Sky advert?
- Give me an example of a time you worked well in a team, what made the work successful, and what was your role in the team?
- How do you prioritise your workload and adjust to meet deadlines?
- Tell me about a time when you made a mistake - how did you rectify it?
- Tell me about a time when you had to come up with a creative solution - how did you realise it, what was your role in making it happen, and to what extent is it still implemented?
- Why Sky compared to its competitors?
- What are the major changes that Sky has undergone in the last few years?
- Give an example of teamwork.
- Give an example of taking responsibility.
Sky Assessment CentreThe next stage for successful applicants to this point is the assessment centre at the Sky offices. The exact format of the day will vary depending on which programme you are applying to. The applicants who have already sat online tests may be asked to sit tests at the centre to verify the results you got first time around. You will be notified nearer the time which ones you will have, but here is the complete list of possible activities:
Group DiscussionThe aim of the group exercise is to see how you interact with others and perform in a team. A team of five or six people is given a brief, usually a business scenario or something related to the work the team does, and asked to solve a problem related to the information. During the group discussion, assessors will be watching to assess you in the context of the group. They are looking out for your contribution to the discussion, and the balance you find in talking without taking the group over. Getting this balance right can be difficult, so see JobTestPrep’s group exercises pages to find out how to prepare.
InterviewDepending on the stream you have applied to, you may have more than one interview, or have a different combination of questions. This interview is similar in terms of questions to the telephone interview, which can be both competency based or biographical. Ahead of the assessment centre and interview in particular, refresh your knowledge of the area you are applying to, remind yourself again of the information contained in your application form, and come prepared with questions you want to ask from the interviewer. Preparation ahead of an interview is key to create a good impression and move yourself forward for the position. The best form of interview practice is in real life interview conditions. JobTestPrep provide Skype based interviews which enable you to be interviewed by an interviewer, and receive feedback on your performance.
Programme/ Business Specific ExerciseIn this exercise you will be tested specifically on the area you have applied to. The task will be based on the type of work you can expect to do if you work with Sky, and you are given all the information you need to complete this task on the day at the session. Some of the past exercises sat include a coding exercise for Software Engineering candidates, or a presentation or case study exercise for business or technology track applicants. You’ll be briefed and provided all the information you need on the day itself as you won’t be able to prepare for this ahead of time beyond ensuring you’re up-to-date with your Sky product knowledge.
Sky is a fun and popular place to work, and with six different programmes to apply for, there is choice for a lot of people. Competition for the places available is fierce, and preparation is needed to ensure that you stay ahead of the pack at all stages. JobTestPrep provide resources for preparing for each stage of the application process, and we have pointed out some of what is available. We hope you have found this article useful, and good luck.
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