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PA Consulting Assessment

 
#1 PA Consulting Assessment
10/08/2006 07:31

Robert to deleted (#0)

Hello

I have been trawling thru this site but cannot seem to find a recent answer regarding Graduate assessment centers at PA. Has anyone been on one recently this year? What is the format? It doesn’t matter which area as I would like to get everyone experiences. What sort of interview questions did you have? Was it the same as the first round? Or was it technical? Is there a case study? What were you asked to deliver? I read elsewhere that it was a number crunching excerise! Is this the case? Was it a group or a one to one? What about the group exercise, was this a role playing exercise? Are there any in-tray or e tray exercises?

Any help will really be appreciated.

Thanks

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#2 RE: PA Consulting Assessment
10/08/2006 10:06

Jill to Robert (#1)

I went to one about 6 months ago - this is my experience of the process:

1st: Competency based interview where somebody with seemingly no interpersonal skills whatsoever asks you questions from a list and writes everything you say down - no interaction! - just type interview questions into Google and print yourself a list to practice.

2nd: Verbal reasoning and numeracy test which were about of average difficulty compared to other companies. Try SHL and the ones on the Kent Uni website as these are harder so will be good practice.

3rd: Interview with junior partner (more competency/ why PA type thing)- they turned up 1 hr late (after I had got up at 5am to get there!) They hadn't read my CV and rather than the CV which I had applied with (through sb I had been working with at DoH) - which they had lost - they used one that I had begun but never finished/submitted on their website 2 years previously when I decided to take gap year and apply a year later instead. The CV was embarrassingly awful and I would have never dreamed of submitting it to anyone!

4th: Personal case study where they give you a brief and you have 45mins to do a written exercise on challenges/solutions faced by a company and then do a presentation. Thought this was a good exercise and although you do have to work fast you do have enough time – make sure you use the whiteboard for the presentation.

5th: Group case study. The one we had was basically just a number crunching exercise as a group (of 6) where 6 rather aggressive PA people fired questions at us. It all seemed rather unnecessary to me as we had all already passed the numeracy tests.

At this stage we were told there was another stage – a final partner interview. This had never been mentioned before and I was going travelling for 6 months 2 days later and was sitting on 3 other offers that I had to make a decision on. They said they would get back to me the next morning so I could come to the final interview if I got through. 2 weeks later in the middle of the night in New Zealand they called me to tell me I had not got through to the final stage! 3 months later I got my travel expenses back.

Needless to say I very happily accepted another offer without a second thought about the fact that PA hadn’t got back to me. One thing I will say, however is that I worked with some really nice people in the DoH who seemed to be doing really interesting work so if you can cope with their HR you might end up with a really good job!

Good luck 

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#3 RE: PA Consulting Assessment
10/08/2006 19:28

Robert to Jill (#2)

Thats a great detailed response Jill. I am sorry you had a bad experience with them and i hope I will NOT experience the same.

Jill, best of luck and many thanks again

Can anyone else share their experiences? did you also have the same type of assessment? Was the group excerise "number crunching" based?

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#4 RE: PA Consulting Assessment
24/08/2006 18:16

Lisa to Robert (#1)

Robert

I also attended a PA assessment day recently and my experience was far more pleasant than Jill's! I've heard from a couple of friend's who have been through PA's process that it is pretty good and relaxed so her bad experience was probably a one-off.

It was challenging but not in any way aggressive. I met a good mix of people from the business who were all very nice and got to ask a lot of questions.

You'll do 3 things on the day -

- interview with someone fairly senior, quite similar to the 1st interview with HR & not technical

- individual case study, tight for time and you have to do a role play at the end of it which was the toughest part

- group case study, involves some number crunching but considering it is a GROUP assessment I'm guessing the numbers don't matter - they'll be looking at how you work with the other people in the room

Overall, less strenuous than other assessment centres I've been to. Unfortunately I didn't get through to next stage but still had a pleasant experience & got some good feedback from HR afterwards.

Hope this helps & good luck!

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