What are Saville Tests?
Since 2004, Saville Assessment (formerly Saville Consulting) has been producing psychometric assessments for the workplace. They provide 180 assessments that are available in 80 countries, and cover technical, behavioural, and intelligence questionnaires.
The founder of the company, Professor Peter Saville was a co-founder of SHL, another psychometric test publisher. Their assessments are backed by psychological and technological research from the last century, and over the last two decades, Saville has won multiple awards for excellence in the field.
What are the Different Types of Saville Tests?
Saville offers a wide range of aptitude tests for all stages and types of professionals, from directors to graduates, customer service, and technical staff. This means that employers can assess role-specific skills and make customised assessments depending on their recruitment and employee development needs.
Every test is available as longer single-skill tests or as swift versions, which are given in combination with other abilities.
The verbal reasoning test is designed to assess your ability to process complex verbal information. You will be given a passage of text, usually containing a job-related scenario, and asked to answer true, false, or cannot say in answer to statements about the text.
The verbal analysis test is a more complex 20-minute test targeted at directors, executives, team leaders, and graduates. While the verbal comprehension tests are 9-14 minutes long and combine text analysis with word-definition problems.
Many roles such as manufacturing, engineering, and managerial positions require strong numerical reasoning skills. There are two levels of numerical reasoning tests:
The numerical analysis tests, which are 20-24 minutes in length and designed for higher-level roles, require data interpretation from tables and graphs.
Numerical comprehension tests are shorter, 14-minute tests for administrative, customer service, and entry-level operational roles. This is designed to test your numerical comprehension, which takes a similar format to the numerical analysis, but is less complex.
Spatial reasoning refers to your ability to use your mind's eye to manipulate shapes and recognise objects from altered perspectives. This is important for engineering, technical, and other army roles, which require you to think creatively and strategically.
The single-skill spatial reasoning tests are seven-to-eight minutes long, while the apprentice aptitude test, which contains six different ability tests, is 19-minutes.
Diagrammatic reasoning is a type of logical reasoning test that involves identifying patterns in sequences of shapes and diagrams. Typically, these are multiple choice questions, which means that you will have to identify the missing piece to the sequence by understanding the rule of the pattern. This can be tricky as the choices can be very similar or deliberately confusing, so you will need to pay close attention.
The higher level diagrammatic analysis tests are 24-minutes long, while the practical tests are 14 and include slightly different sections that are less complex.
A mechanical reasoning test assesses your ability to use mechanical principles and concepts like force, pressure, energy, and pulleys. These are used for all kinds of technical roles to ensure that you have the right level of skill and understanding to perform well on the job.
The tests are 10-12.5 minutes long, but can be taken alongside spatial and diagrammatic reasoning as a full technical aptitude test.
Also known as inductive reasoning, abstract reasoning is another kind of logical reasoning test. Abstract reasoning is often used by the Armed Forces to test your fluid intelligence, which is how well you respond to new information and think creatively in response to complex problems.
Similar to diagrammatic, you will be required to work out patterns between images and shapes, which requires logical thinking to follow through connections and come to a conclusion. This kind of critical thinking is crucial for many technical and managerial roles in the Armed Forces. The test is available as a 16-minute aptitude test, or a six-minute sub-test.
Error Checking Aptitude
Error checking tests are used to assess your speed and accuracy when it comes to identifying mistakes in verbal, numerical, and coding information. These are typically given for administrative, commercial, customer service, and operational jobs, which require you to process detailed information.
They are six to eight minutes long as single-skill tests, but on the combined aptitude tests you get just 90-seconds to complete the error checking section. In some sections, there will be multiple errors, but in others, there may be no errors, so you have to work fast to identify which parts need more time.
The workplace English is only given as a standalone test, which takes 16.5 minutes to complete. This test is designed to determine your level of English language skill and will present you with workplace-related sentences, which have a word missing. You must select the right word from the options below to show your understanding and use of necessary language.
Situational Judgement Tests
Employers increasingly like to use situational judgement tests because they are strong indicators of on-the-job performance and working behaviours. You will be presented with realistic workplace scenarios and asked to rank given responses by how appropriate you think they are.
These tests are specific to a role, which means that every company gets a tailor-made situational judgement test. Therefore, the specifics of the questions will depend on the position and industry you have applied for.
WAVE Personality Questionnaires
The WAVE personality questionnaire is a highly reputable personality assessment, which is used as a predictor of competency potential and cultural fit. These questionnaires can be used to hire more suitable candidates, maximise talent development, and identify leadership potential.
There are two levels of detail: the 13-minute Focus Style and the 40-minute Professional Style.
WAVE is built around four clusters of characteristics:
- Solving problems
- Influencing people
- Adapting approaches
- Delivering results
Overall, this translates to 108 personality facets, which allows Saville to produce detailed reports on your workplace behaviours, preferences, and style. Employers like to use WAVE because it is a good indicator of high suitability and potential performance, which improves employee retention and efficiency.
How Do I Prepare and Pass the Saville Assessment Test?
1. Read the questions thoroughly
These tests are designed to be challenging, so take your time reading the questions and make sure you understand what is being asked of you.
2. Focus on your weaknesses
It may feel frustrating, but identify which ability test is your weak spot and try to practice it the most. If you are taking a combined test, then all of your sections will be considered individually, so you want to aim for the highest score you can on every skill.
3. Research the tests
Saville's portfolio includes nearly 200 assessments. Do your research beforehand to learn more about the format of the tests and what kind of questions you will be faced with.
4. Understand what role
The technical and behavioural skills required are specific for each role, so companies are able to choose the assessments needed. Get to know the job specification and what your employer is looking for, this will help you anticipate what kind of responses are desired.
5. Expand your skills
Aside from practice tests, there are plenty of ways to improve your skills. Activities like crossword puzzles, Sudokus, brain training, and even videogames can help with verbal, numerical, abstract, and spatial reasoning.
Are Saville assessments hard?
Saville assessments are generally challenging, which is why many employers like to use them. There are also two levels of difficulty: those designed for upper-level and graduate positions, and those for entry-level and apprentice positions.
How long are Saville tests?
This is dependent on which tests you are taking. The Saville tests are between 6-24 minutes long. Each individual section has its own time limit, so research the format of the tests beforehand to find out the format of the ones you are being given.
How are Saville tests scored?
Every test has a different scoring method, so you have to look into the specific tests you are taking beforehand. Generally, you will be scored positively for every correct answer, but some tests will also give you a score for speed.
What do I need to take my Saville tests?
The Saville tests are made up of a mix of supervised and unsupervised assessments, which means that some will have to be done in person, while others are done online. Before taking your test, check with your recruiter what equipment you are allowed, e.g. calculator, dictionary, pen, and notepaper, to make sure that you have the best test experience you can.