Thomas HPTI Test - Complete Guide [2024]

The Thomas HPTI test is used by employers to evaluate personality traits that may affect the candidate’s workplace performance and is usually used for management and leadership positions.

This test contains many questions that must be answered very quickly. This makes it challenging for candidates – the significant number of questions and the limited time is designed to create artificial stress on candidates.

In the following guide, you will receive an explanation of the personality traits measured by the Thomas HPTI test, the way in which the test is organized, and the methods used to measure and evaluate the personality traits.

JobTestPrep is currently engaged in the process of developing an accurate, reliable, and practical online practice pack for the Thomas HPTI Test
If you'd like to hear more about what we have in store, please contact me at
(I usually reply within 24-48 hours).

Tamar, Thomas International Assessments Expert at JobTestPrep
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What Is the Thomas HPTI Test?

The Thomas High Potential Trait Indicator (HPTI) assessment is a personality test that contains 78 self-report questions to be solved in 8 minutes.

The test is designed and administered by Thomas International, a multinational test provider, that also administered other tests such as the cognitive GIA Test and the personality profiling PPA Test.

The HPTI test is a personality test. It is built on the assumption that every potential candidate has a set of certain personality traits that are more or less stable throughout their career and that these traits can be used to assess candidates in a standardized, computer-based test.

The Main Challenge of the HPTI Test - Time Constraints

The HPTI test has one major feature that differentiates it from other personality profiling tests.

Usually, personality profiling tests are untimed. The HPTI Test is.

Not only is it timed, but you will be given about six seconds to answer each question. This is designed to create stress so that the candidate has less of an opportunity to think about the answers.

You can minimize difficulties by preparing for the test so that you are calm when you are taking it.

The Traits Measured by the Thomas HPTI Assessment

The High Potential Trait Indicator Test relies on time-proven observation as well as rigorous data to assess those traits which are believed to associate strongly and consistently with a successful career at the roles for which the test is used.

These are the traits profiled by the Thomas HPTI Assessment: 


Candidates with a high Conscientiousness score are focused on their goals and on finding ways to achieve them. On the other hand, candidates that score lower on the Conscientiousness trait tend to be more open-minded and more open to learning new insights.


A high adjustment score means that the candidate performs better under pressure. Those whose Adjustment score is low tend to experience more workplace stress, and so might be a less-than-optimal fit for a high-stress working environment.


Candidates with a high Curiosity score are more interested in learning and in trying new ways to achieve workplace goals. On the other hand, low Curiosity scores mean the candidate prefers reliable, time-tested methods that achieve consistent results.

Risk Approach

High-scoring candidates tend towards actively confronting difficult situations, whether workplace conversations or high-risk work. On the other hand, those with a lower-risk approach demonstrate a more passive or reactive response to risk, which can be a disadvantage in some workplaces and an advantage in others.

Ambiguity Acceptance

A high ambiguity acceptance score means that a candidate is better at dealing with situations that involve uncertainty, ambiguity, or complexity, while a candidate with a low score thrives in situations where situations have clear-cut answers and solutions.


Candidates with a high competitiveness score enjoy working to reach positions of power, influence, and recognition. On the other hand, persons with a lower score may prefer working out of the spotlight and are often better at collaborating with coworkers, even if this requires them to work as hard as the high-competitiveness candidates.

Thomas HPTI Test Sample Question

The HPTI test consists of 78 questions, which the candidate must answer within 8 minutes (This is intended to ensure that the candidate answers each question as quickly as possible, providing an answer which is 'instinctive').

Each of the questions Is answered on a 1-7 Likert scale, where 1 means 'disagree completely' and 7 means 'agree completely.

Here is what a question on the HPTI test might look like:


Generally, I avoid making decisions that have a chance of leading to failure.

HPTI Test scores

Test scores in the HPTI are ranked from Low, through Moderate and Optimal, to Excessive. Optimal scores are considered the best, but those candidates with a Moderate score (especially if it is a score close to Optimal) may still be accepted to leadership positions. A Low or Excessive score means that one's senior leadership effectiveness is reduced in certain contexts, but the candidate can still be a good fit for other roles.


thomas hpti scores

image courtesy of Thomas International (Source).

Why Is It Important to Prepare for the Thomas International HPTI Test?

Because the test designers believe that the HPTI test results display qualities that stay with a candidate over the long term, these go into an employee's record and are used to build long-term plans for a candidate's career. This means there is far-reaching importance to doing well on this test, which goes beyond the immediate acceptance on rejection for the current position you're applying for – the test will also affect your chances for promotion.

JobTestPrep is currently engaged in the process of developing an accurate, reliable, and practical online practice pack for the Thomas HPTI Test
If you'd like to hear more about what we have in store, please contact me at
(I usually reply within 24-48 hours).

How to Study for the High Potential Trait Indicator Test?

The Thomas HPTI Test very clearly does not assess any kind of professional or scientific knowledge. On the other hand, you should not believe anyone who tells you that you do not need to study for it, or that there are 'no wrong answers.

There are, in fact, wrong answers, that's why the companies pay so much money to commission the test!

The proper way to study for the HPTI is to rehearse, as much as possible, with mock tests that let you simulate answering real HPTI questions in a limited time. You should do this again and again until you are confident in getting a good test score.