HMV is pioneering retail-specific psychometric assessment tests to help select candidates for its graduate training programme.
Developed by PSL, the assessment gives HMV an in-depth understanding of each candidate and it prompts interviewers to ask probing questions about their strengths and weaknesses.
“Our graduate programme is crucial to the business because we’re opening 25 new stores per year and we like to promote our store managers from within,” said Tony Varchione, HMV’s divisional HR manager (south).
“Last year we had 3,500 applications for the programme. The assessment helps us to find the candidates with the right personal qualities and attributes.”
The ‘three-in-one’ assessment – called the Branch Manager Questionnaire – includes verbal and numerical reasoning tests and a personality questionnaire which assesses seven factors including achievement orientation, empathy and influence.
All applicants for the graduate programme apply online. Every six months, HMV conducts around 380 in-store interviews and then invites 90 graduates to day-long assessment centres, where they undergo exercises, a presentation and psychometric assessment.
Thirty candidates are then invited for a final interview, from which 25 are appointed on to the graduate programme.