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Aptitude Tests at Grant Thornton
Grant Thornton are one of the UK's largest accounting and financial services companies who are the preferred choice of auditors for large numbers of companies in the UK. Grant Thornton International, of whom Grant Thornton UK is one of the primary members operates in over 100 countries employing almost 30,000 people. Grant Thornton, along with BDO Stoy Hayward, is one of the two largest accounting and financial services companies in the UK outside of the "big four" (Ernst & Young, PwC, Deloitte and KPMG).
Applying To Grant Thornton
One thing for Grant Thornton's applicants to remember from the start is that they will only accept one application per person, so applicants cannot apply to several divisions. Anyone who does so is likely to be rejected from the start.
Grant Thornton's application process is of a fairly standard layout, comparable to many of the other financial firms such as PwC and the FSA. Graduates wishing to apply to Grant Thornton are expected to achieve or be predicted the minimum of a 2:1 degree with a range of expected UCAS points depending on which accounting qualification (ACCA, AAT, ACA/CIPFA) they wish to undertake during their time with the company. Grant Thornton (according to their official website) will accept graduate applicants from any degree course.
The first stage of the Grant Thornton application process is the typical online form, though GT ask the applicant to indicate which part of the business they wish to work in if making a general application rather than applying for a specific role. The form is reviewed and if it is approved, the applicant will be asked to take the standard online numerical reasoning and verbal reasoning tests.
Once an applicant has completed their GT online tests they may receive an email indicating their application is on hold while the company deals with people who are at more advanced stages of the application process. Some candidates have taken months to proceed from this stage to the HR interview, so any candidates who are concerned should contact the company direct. For some candidates, this has been an indication that vacancies at the particular office they have applied to have been filled or nearly filled. Applicants in this position may be asked if they are prepared to work at a different office/location to the one they originally indicated.
Candidates who successfully make their way through the online aptitude tests will have to sit an interview with a member of the human resources team. This could be over the telephone or face-to-face depending on the division being applied for and how close the applicant lives to the office, amongst other factors. The questions are largely competency based but the interviewer will also look to gauge personality traits of the applicant such as their motivations and their leadership and organisational qualities.
Those who make it through the HR interview will arrive at the traditional assessment day. This can consist of one or more interviews (potentially with managers and/or directors) and potentially case studies, though not in all cases.
Candidates will usually be notified of whether they are successful within one working week. It has been remarked by previous applicants that GT's recruitment process is extremely efficient, something that bodes well for candidates hearing of their successes or rejections quickly.
How Do Grant Thornton Use Aptitude Tests
Grant Thornton's use of aptitude tests mirrors many other large companies, currently using the traditional approach of the numerical reasoning and verbal reasoning test combination. According to the official GT website, Grant Thornton's aptitude tests are provided by Kenexa (PSL), rather than SHL or any of the other major providers of test.
Grant Thornton's tests, in particular the numerical reasoning test have been described as being slightly harder than those at many of their competitors. There have been several reports of candidates who think they have performed well on the verbal reasoning test but only managed to answer 13-15 out of the 20 questions on the numerical test, but still made it through to the interview stage. This suggests that Grant Thornton prefer accuracy over speed and would rather an applicant answers 13 out of 13 questions correctly rather than answer all 20 but only get 13 correct.
Preparing For Grant Thornton's Aptitude Tests
Past takers of the Grant Thornton numerical test have said that the test consists of questions such as calculating percentages and analysing graphical data, fairly standard for most numerical reasoning aptitude tests.
PracticeSHLTests.com has several resources for those needing help and information about online aptitude tests. There are pages with dedicated information on numerical reasoning (which may be read here) and verbal reasoning tests (available on this link), as well as a more general page with help and advice on passing aptitude tests which can be reached from the main menu. Finally, there is a free sample of online verbal reasoning test questions, designed to give company applicants a sample session of how the real questions will be.
Previous applicants have indicated the importance of practicing for the Grant Thornton online aptitude tests. Information on where to do so can be found below.
Where To Practice For Grant Thornton's Aptitude Tests
The best place to get full psl / kenexa style practice numerical and verbal tests is at the Assessment Day website. Assessment Day have a full range of numerical, verbal and inductive reasoning tests designed to help fully prepare applicants for the real company tests. Taking practice tests is essential for candidates to understand the style of thinking required to answer the different kinds of questions, meaning applicants can focus on providing correct answers, rather than trying to work out what the question is asking them. With this in mind, applicants should head over to Assessment Day to get practicing and improve their chances!