Here at your Students’ Union we host assessment centres regularly during term time.
The main purpose of these events is to give as many students as possible a real life recruitment experience to help your develop your interview skills. We also keep our eyes open for candidates we think would thrive as part of our employed team of Union Team Members.
We prepare feedback for every candidates who attends an assessment centre; helping you to develop your interview technique and making recommendations for future development. You are very welcome to apply to attend one of our assessment centres whether you want to work for the Students' Union or not.
We imagine you have lots of questions to ask us about the Assessment Centre, particularly if you haven't attended one before, so below you'll find the answers to some frequently asked questions.
What can I expect to happen at an Assessment Centre?
Our Assessment Centres are a half day of activities which are fun, designed to help you relax and give you a great opportunity to show off your strengths and skills. The main exercises are in a group, where you’ll take part in various tasks along with other applicants.
For certain roles, there may also be a short individual exercise. For instance, if you’ve applied for an admin role, we’ll ask you to do an admin or prioritisation task; or if you’re interested in a specialist role in, say, First Aid, we’ll ask you to complete a knowledge-based exercise. The Assessment Centre ends with an individual interview, which gives you another chance to tell us about your skills.
What if I am only attending an assessment centre for interview practice and don’t actually want a job?
This is absolutely fine and one of the main reasons we host these events so regularly. All you need to do is indicate this fact on your application and then all other steps of the process will be treated as if you are a genuine candidate.
Plus, you never know you may love the event so much that you change your mind and decide that you want to work for us (although please do mention this to one of your assessors if this is the case!)
What should I bring with me to an Assessment Centre
If you are applying for one of our Union Team Member positions you will need to bring documents that prove you have the right to work in the UK. This applies to everyone, regardless of nationality. If you don’t have these documents with you on the day, we can’t carry on with the recruitment process. Full details of acceptable documents under UK Government guidelines is available here.
Though our Assessment Centres are fun, they still include an interview and are your first opportunity to make an impression on us. So you should dress smartly, in suitable business wear, just as though you were going to any other interview. Remember, you will be surrounded by other applicants, so don’t be the only person in casual clothes!
What will I be doing at the Assessment Centre?
We alter the agendas for our Assessment Centres, depending upon the roles that we are recruiting for on the day but a range of basic principles apply to all of our recruitment events.
Upon arrival you will be greeted by our friendly HR team, who will sign you in and complete your eligibility to work checks (remember those essential ID documents we mentioned earlier?)
We will then complete an icebreaker, so you can get to know the other applicants and relax into the event.
The rest of the half day will be spent on exercises, activities, tests and an all-important interview. You’ll be working in teams and individually to impress the panel of assessors.
Throughout the whole event (including your breaks!) the assessment centre team will be taking notes on how you interact with others and perform in certain activities. These notes are to help us decide whether you are the best fit for our team and to help us decide where you would best fit in our organisation. These notes are also used to give all candidates constructive feedback after the events whether you are successful in the recruitment process or not.
Will I be told on the day whether I have been successful?
The decision of whether to offer you a place on our team is one we take very seriously and serious decisions cannot be made instantly.
Our team will take some time to consider your application and your performance at the Assessment Centre before contacting you by email to let you know the overall outcome of your application.
I may need extra support on the day, how do I organise this?
Our team will take every reasonable measure possible to ensure that everybody can engage with our Assessment Centre fully. If you have a disability or have any special requirements, please let us know in advance so that we can make sure that arrangements are made.
Can I claim travel expenses if I have to travel to attend the Assessment Centre?
Unfortunately, we do not currently offer to cover the travel expenses of shortlisted candidates.
I want to be considered for a Union Team Member position - How do I choose which department I want to work for?
Here at the Students' Union, we're one team. As such we no longer recruit for specific department-based vacancies. Instead, we recruit Union Team Members who are contracted to work for the Union as a whole, meaning you could be working in the LRV on a great club night one evening, serving customers in our shops another and supporting our letting service tenants another day.
You might be wondering how this works.
Well, at the Assessment Centre your assessors will suggest departments of work best suited to your strengths and experiences. The Employability and HR Team will then allocate you to a ‘home department,’ which is the location you’ll start work and where you’ll complete your basic training.
As opportunities arise to support other departments throughout your time with us, you’ll be offered training and shadowing shifts to allow you to work across our charity.
When is the next Assessment Centre?
Due to the outbreak of COVID-19 (Coronavirus) all Assessment Centres have been postponed until September 2020. For those candidates who applied for the Assessment Centre due to take place in March 2020, the Students' Union will hold your application on file for consideration in September. If you do not wish the Students' Union to retain your data please email email@example.com.
How do I apply to be considered for one of the Assessment Centres?
We hold regular Assessment Centres throughout term time. To view current vacancies and apply click here
My question about the Assessment Centre hasn’t been answered, who can I contact?
Our Employability and HR team are happy to help should you have any questions about our Assessment Centres. Simply email firstname.lastname@example.org with your questions and we’ll do our best to help.
If you have questions more generally about interviewing well, applying for work or about how to present yourself at an Assessment Centre, the Careers and Personal Development team over at the University are an ideal support for you.