AT Kearney Recruiting Skills Test

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The AT Kearney Recruitment Test seems to be a new candidate filtering tool that AT Kearney has adopted in 2012 (at least that is the first time I'm hearing of this test from multiple sources).

For AT Kearney, the test fulfills the same role as the McKinsey Problem Solving Test does for McKinsey -- a way to measure a candidates quantitative and logical reasoning skills.

Here's more information about the test from a field report from a CIB:

  • 30 minute timed test
  • Calculate IS allowed
  • Multiple choice question format
  • Approximately 27 questions in total - 16 quantitative questions, 11 general business knowledge questions
  • Of the quantitative questions 2/3 were numerical problem solving, 1/3 involved questions regarding a graph
  • Of the general business knowledge questions, they focused on questions that only someone who has been following business news would be able to understand such as "Who is the founder of [famous company]? Which of the following companies is in automotive industry?
  • The best ways to prepare for the quantitative questions is to use my guide for the McKinsey PST. It includes numerous resources for practice and will help you prepare.

    For the general business knowledge questions, this is very hard to prepare for with short notice and probably is not worth expending a lot of time to prepare. However, if you had ample time, the best way to prepare would be to read one major business newspaper each day and one major business magazine each week.

    For the United States, the newspaper I would recommend would be the Wall Street Journal -- in particular the marketplace section of the paper which covers general business news (whereas the other sections tend to cover financial news). For a business magazine, I recommend Bloomberg Business Week. This magazine has good breath as it covers many stories in each issue, roughly one page articles for each story. This is an efficient way to learn a little, about a lot of (business) things. Since this mirrors what is being tested in the AT Kearney Recruitment Test, it's a more appropriate magazine choice than Forbes or Fortune which tends to cover fewer stories in greater depth.

    Important Note: Based on the field reports I'm receiving from a few CIBs, my working hypothesis is that AT Kearney is moving in the direction of more quantitative testing AND different groups (and possibly countries) within AT Kearney may be using DIFFERENT tests.

    If you have any additional information on this test, please post them below in the comments section. I will periodically update this article to reflect the lastest information about AT Kearny's skills testing efforts.

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