Assistants’ Skills Tests
Based on the above referenced call for tenders, it looks likely at the time of writing thatAssistants are going to have two main types of testing in relation to their professional skills:–
: These generally aim at measuring your ability to detect errors in a givenset of information and gauge your concentration skills (e.g. “How many “
” signsarethere in the following sequence:
”). This is ahighly challenging but rather simple type of exercise; it nevertheless does relate to yourfuture tasks e.g. if your superior asks you to revise a ten-page document and identifypossible typos or omitted commas under time pressure.–
IT Literacy Tests
: These tests aim at measuring your ability to learn and use acertainpiece of software, which predicts practical exercises that require you to perform certaintasks or operations on a computer according to instructions. This may also include cer-tain tests where your time management skills are tested by having a simulation envi-ronment in which a meeting must be set up in a software (and you need to sort throughthe conflicting agendas of participants) or a documentsuch as an official letter must beduly formatted and edited on a computer.–
: This type of test is the most complex one of the three and it is known thatyou can expect such an exercise in the assessment phase of the recruitment competition.The chief goal is to evaluate your skills to prioritise and organise: this is a business simu-lation exercise in which you will skim through alarge number of items such as internaland external memos, telephone and fax messages, e-mails, reports and correspondence,together with information about the structure of the organisation and your role therein.The e-tray exercise is the electronic (computer-based) version of the classic in-tray exercise;given the limitations of a printed publication, you can find a full sample of the latter intheassessment part of this book with a detailed report and hints for preparation.The most important thing in these exercises is to quickly get a full overview of theactors and relations between them; identify urgent/non-urgent and important/unim-portant issues and act on them accordingly; look out for conflicts between items in the
file such as appointment requests for the same time slots, personalissues that you canidentify from the items or other practical/legal conflicts such as e.g. a budget ceiling setout in a contract and a provider’s invoice exceeding that amount; finally, to extract rele-vant information from the data you are provided with. For further tips and hints, pleaserefer to the sample exercise and its evaluation
Specialists’ Tests and EU Knowledge
In the previous system,this knowledge was always tested in the second (written) phaseof the exams in the form of multiple choice tests and an essay; in the new system thistype of domain specific knowledge is tested in the assessment phase mainly in the formof a practical exercise or in the framework of the case study. This latter is closely relatedto the exam profile and the sub-profile or domain that you had chosen atthe time ofapplication.EPSO may nevertheless decide to include multiple choice specialist questions even in thepre-selection or later in the assessment phase of all profiles, especially for Assistants andSpecialists. If re-introduced, these questions are likely to cover practical issues such as finan-cial or project management, public administration and human resources issues, dependingon theprofile sought. What seems more probable is that even if some aspect of the special-ist knowledge is tested by multiple choice questions, these will take a less theoretical andmore job-oriented approach than the tests used beforehand.In any case, specialist knowledge is going to be tested for all profiles as no capable can-didate who otherwise lacks the proper knowledge of the chosen field can be...
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