What Is the Hiring Process for Power Companies and How to Prepare for It?
Companies that provide energy and utility services are, perhaps not unsurprisingly, the largest workforce employers in the marketplace. There are very many positions and careers available in this field with lots of opportunities for progression into and across a variety of departments.
Employment within the energy market could entail a variety of career disciplines such as:
- Customer Services
If you choose to follow a career in this sector, then it is likely that you will have to undergo some form of tests and assessments in order to gauge your suitability for your chosen role.
Qualities such as your faith in people, your ability to make fast decisions, and your ability to adjust and adapt readily to different situations will all be under scrutiny by your prospective employer.
Understanding the assessment process and making sure you make adequate preparations will give you the best chance of success.
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What Type of Assessments Might I Encounter?
There are a number of generic tests that you may encounter and some that will be more specific to your chosen role or discipline, and we will explore those in more detail in this article.
The test bundle from Job Test Prep will include the following assessment practice tests:
- SJT practice tests – These are Situational Judgment Tests. In these assessments, you will be presented with a range of hypothetical, yet possible, workplace scenarios that you may encounter in your new role. You will be given a range of possible solutions or courses of action to the given problem, and it will be your job to select your preferred course of action. Knowing how you are likely to react in a given situation will give employers a clear idea of your character traits and also how well you will not only deal with your new role, but also how well you are likely to fit into existing teams and company culture.
- Professional personality test practice – Personality tests are designed to do exactly as their name suggests. As with the SJT tests, these are a highly favored way for employers to understand your character traits and how well you will fit into company life. Whilst it is important to be truthful on these tests (you need to know that the organization is right for you too), it is worth remembering what the questions are trying to find out. Answer with your work ‘hat’ on as opposed to giving answers as if you were in your life outside of work. Employers will be looking to understand your personality with regard to your ethics, honesty, motivation, and commitment, so it is important that your answers reflect you in a positive light.
- Reading comprehension tests
- Vocabulary tests
- Written communications tests
- Numeracy tests
- Word math problems tests
- Tables & Graphs tests
- Logical Reasoning tests
What Is the Hiring Process for Power, Utility, and Energy Companies?
The usual hiring process for organizations in this field comprises the following stages:
Online Application, phone interview, assessment tests, and a face-to-face interview. Each stage of the hiring process will need careful preparation if you are to achieve your goal and secure a position with your chosen company.
As the name suggests, this part of the process is done on the computer and is the first stage of the hiring procedure. It is your first opportunity to impress your prospective employer.
Therefore, it is important that you take time and care to include all of the details accurately and cohesively in order to make you stand out from the crowd. You will be asked to give details about your work history, qualifications, and your motivation for applying.
If you are successful at the online application stage, then you will be selected to attend a telephone interview; you may also be asked to attend an online video interview instead of the traditional phone call.
You will be given the opportunity to prepare your answers to around five or six interview questions, which you will then share with the interviewer.
The interviewer is likely to be a company recruiter and will want to discuss your career goals and your employment history. The job of the recruiter at this stage is to determine whether or not you are a good ‘fit’ for the company.
If they feel that your history and character traits will potentially work well with the current company culture, then you will be asked to undertake the pre-employment tests relevant to your position and company guidelines.
These tests will very much depend on which position you are applying for. You will receive your link to the test via email.
- Tests for engineering jobs – These tests will evaluate both your numerical and spatial reasoning skills
- Tests for operators – Any position which has a strong element of planning or scheduling will require you to be assessed in regard to your knowledge of mechanical principles and how well you are able to interpret graphs and tables.
- Tests for clerical positions – Clerical positions may include jobs such as meter readers, and consequently, you will be asked to take a clerical skills test.
- Tests for financial analysts – The ability to use functions, format, and edit cells in Microsoft Excel will be important for financial roles. You will also be assessed on your ability to create charts and graphs. Typically, the test will take around 40 minutes.
- Tests for customer service roles – Obviously, any role that requires you to work with the public and customers will require you to have good communication and problem-solving abilities. Situational Judgment Tests and CSR Response Tests will assess your ability in these areas. Hypothetical workplace scenarios involving customers and your choice of the best course of action in each case will demonstrate to assessors how well you will fit such a role.
In some cases, it may be that you will be asked to take a personality test as well as the tests that are specific to your new position.
If you manage to get a high score on your pre-employment tests, then you will be asked to attend a face-to-face interview.
One of the main reasons why it is important to make sure you are adequately prepared for your employment tests is the fact that you will be judged against other candidates; in short, employers want the best person for the job.
If you score well, you will be chosen. If your fellow competitors achieve a higher score than you, then they will be chosen — preparation is everything!
Your face-to-face interview may be done in front of a panel or one-to-one, depending on the particular organization and its procedures. It is normal for you to be interviewed by a Human Resources manager along with a manager from your chosen department or sector.
You should expect a range of questions relating to workplace behaviors and situations, and you should practice giving your answers in the S.T.A.R format – namely, Situation, Task, Action, Result.
For roles that incorporate work out in the field, it is a good idea to revise and be aware of safety roles as well as make sure you have sound technical and mechanical knowledge. The interview process can be intense and may last from one to four hours.
The energy, power, and utilities industry is highly competitive, with many candidates competing for the same positions. It is therefore crucial to make sure that you stand out amongst your fellow competitors by making sure that you are memorable to recruiters.
Having a sound understanding of the test formats and likely content will give you a competitive advantage. It will ensure that you are able to approach the test with calm confidence, able to answer effectively and efficiently. The last thing you want is for there to be any unpleasant surprises on the day!
It is also important to do your research with regard to the hiring company – what is their process? What tests will they be using? Once you are fully familiar with their particular hiring process, then you will be able to use the test resources from Job Tes Prep that are specific to your role and chosen company.
A job in the energy industry can be rewarding and provide long-term career prospects, and this is what makes it so attractive to potential candidates. Get your preparation right and you will be on your way to standing head and shoulders above your competition to secure your dream job!
Written by Karen Stanley
Karen is a former teacher of 20 years and ten times published author. She writes content for educational organizations and businesses, nationally and internationally. She coaches new and budding writers through to publication and is passionate about creativity; she runs creative writing workshops in schools and fostering agencies.
Sarah is an accomplished educator, researcher and author in the field of testing and assessment. She has worked with various educational institutions and organisations to develop innovative evaluation methods and enhance student learning. Sarah has published numerous articles and books on assessment and learning. Her passion for promoting equity and fairness in the education system fuels her commitment to sharing insights and best practices with educators and policymakers around the world.