Barclays Numerical Reasoning Test
Barclays looks for employees with a high numerical ability. Applicants have to pass a numerical test before being offered a position.
Barclays use the following tests in their selection process:
- Numerical reasoning test
- Verbal reasoning test
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About Barclays Numerical Reasoning Tests
To ensure quality of its workforce, Barclays uses numerical and verbal ability testing in its recruitment process, testing objectively and fairly for abilities essential to career success in banking. Barclays’ graduate programs are open to all graduates, and numerical/verbal reasoning tests are a highly effective tool for testing ability, particularly when candidates do not have significant work experience, or have graduated with a non-relevant degree subject.
Barclays uses SHL for both their numerical and verbal tests. The function of the tests is to screen out candidates without adequate numerical and verbal ability, ensuring that only those suited to a career in banking progress with their application.
Numerical reasoning tests are a fair and objective way for Barclays to assess a wide range of applicants, each having different experiences and different qualifications. By analysing the results of a standardised numerical reasoning test, Barclays are able to quickly see which candidates are suitable for the role and which are not. This sort of information about candidates’ skills is difficult to glean from interviews and qualifications alone, so they use professional psychometric tests.
Often, Barclays will ask applicants to take a numerical test online, which you can take from home. When the numerical test is used early on in the application process like this you will have to achieve a minimum score before you progress to the next round (typically a score in the top 50% of applicants is required however this does vary role to role). Further along in the selection process you might be asked to attend an assessment centre or interview where you will be asked to sit a numerical test again. This is so Barclays can verify the person scoring highly in the test is indeed the person applying for the job.
Barclays Application Process Stages
Here is the typical process for your application to Barclays.
Applicants will be required to provide their contact details, education and work experience. Similarly, a CV will need to be uploaded as well; this is to ensure that the candidate meets the minimum entry requirements for their selected role.
Candidates will then need to undertake both a numerical and verbal reasoning test; both these tests are produced by SHL. Candidates will be informed upon completion if they have not met the entry requirements for the test they have undertaken.
Candidates that are successful in the testing stage then undertake a telephone interview, which will be competency based, and will assess your knowledge of the role and the organisation.
The final stage is at an assessment centre, in which candidates will undertake role play exercises, presentations and in-tray exercises to gage the candidate’s ability. Successful applications at stage 4 will be given an offer of employment from Barclays.
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Our numerical practice test pack is suitable for preparing for the Barclays numerical reasoning exercise.
Excellent variety of practice tests ranging in difficulty levels. Really helped me feel prepared for, and pass, my actual online tests.
Barclays Numerical Reasoning Test Questions
Like most numerical tests, the one used by Barclays looks at your ability to interpret numerical and graphical data and answer questions which require numerical analysis of the data provided. The numerical test will be assessing your speed and accuracy. The answers are multiple choice and you should try to work quickly within the time limit, but also accurately. Negative marking is unlikely to be used but do not guess answers, as this will show up in your accuracy score. Sometimes you will find that you can make a best guess estimate by deducing that some of the answer options are incorrect. This approach to verbal tests will come with practice, and you will become familiar with the type of verbal tests used by companies such as Barclays.
Numerical reasoning tests and who uses them
Companies are using numerical reasoning test more and more in their application process that candidates must go through. Numerical reasoning tests are favoured when the role being recruited for requires interpretation and manipulation of numerical data on a regular basis. A person's score in a numerical reasoning test is a good indicator of their ability to work well with numbers. This is very important in finance, accounting and actuarial positions.
Barclays use numerical reasoning tests as part of their recruitment process to help them select the best candidates for a particular role.
So as a graduate or senior candidate applying for a job at Barclays you might feel like the numerical reasoning test is an unnecessary hoop to jump through. But you should bear in mind that Barclays are asking you to complete the numericall test as much for your own benefit as theirs; if you are not suitable for the role, a psychometric test will usually identify this. Research has shown that psychometric tests, such as those used by Barclays, are a better predictor of job performance than traditional selection metrics such as level of degree achieved.
What you should know before taking your numerical reasoning test
The numerical operations required in standardised numerical tests are of a level which most applicants can achieve. The difficult aspect comes with carrying out the calculations quickly and accurately within the time limit. You will be allowed a calculator for your numerical test at Barclays, so make sure you know how to perform these basic operations. Percentage increases and decreases are the most common questions which catch out candidates. Here is a list of the most common operations you can expect in your numerical test:
Different types of numerical tests
Most questions in most numerical reasoning tests follow a standard format displaying numerical data, the question and answer options on screen. These can be arranged differently, but each test will stick to the same layout throughout. The numerical data may be a graph, table, chart or other visual form. The question text may contain extra information which adds to what's given in the table, this might also be necessary to answer the question correctly. Lastly, the answer options are almost always multiple choice. Multiple choice answers can vary, however. You may have 4 options to pick from, 5, maybe 10, or more. The more answer options to pick from, the slimmer the chances are that you can obtain the correct answer by guessing.
Some publishers will have less subtle variations in their test from what's described here. Capp for example, will ask you to rank the answer options by a particular criteria. Sometimes, in TalentQ tests, the question may have more than one answer, and you will be told to select two, or possibly more answer options from those availble. Test types by different publishers are explained here in more detail.
Are these tests suitable for Barclays?
Yes. Barclays use numerical reasoning tests to assess applicants in the recruitment process. The practice tests we provide have been designed to mimic the numerical reasoning test's style to create an environment similar to the real assessment. This provides you with confidence that the questions you practice with us now are an accurate reflection of the real assessment.
How difficult are your tests?
The same difficulty as real tests. Generally real employer selection tests don't differ that much in terms of difficulty which is why they compare your score against norm groups. Our practice tests are pitched roughly at graduate level, but this means they are actually suitable for preparing for all levels of job: entry; apprentice; graduate; senior; director.
Are they compatible with my Mac / Tablet / Phone?
Yes, and PC, and Linux and smartphone and Android and...everything. Our practice tests will run on all systems and they are responsive so they will work well on tablets and smartphones too!
How many times can I take the tests?
Unlimited. You can take our practice tests as many times as you like; there is no limit. But to be honest, after taking the same test a few times you start to remember the answers, so that’s why we have lots of tests.
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