NHS Blood and Transplant People First

Selection Methods Old

The main method of selection is the face to face interview; however there are a number of other selection methods that can be used to assess the essential criteria shown on the Recruitment profile / Person Specification.  The options available will be discussed with you at your commissioning meeting and are detailed below. If you decide later to include and additional selection method or would like some advice please speak to your recruitment contact.  

All selection methods must be relevant to the job. Care should be taken to ensure that any tests do not discriminate indirectly through, for example, assumptions about candidates’ backgrounds or interests or assumptions of prior knowledge of NHSBT 

When recruiting to band 8a or above posts at least one of these should be used as well as the interview.

The selection process should also include a tour or visit of the work area so that candidates are able to see this before deciding whether to accept an offer of employment. Remember recruitment is a 2 way process!

Where a selection method is being used we would notify the candidates in advance of the selection day so please make sure that your recruitment contact is aware.


Skill Assessment/ Test

These are work based tests, for example driving assessment, word processing and/or spreadsheet test, report writing etc.


Candidates are asked to give a presentation as part of their interview.  The subject for the presentation can be provided on the day of the interviews (with preparation time) or in advance of the selection day.  This tests presentation skills and subject knowledge and their ability to construct and deliver a presentation on a given topic.  If they are provided with the subject in advance of the interviews, due to IT security restrictions, you will need to ask the candidates to email their presentations to a named contact prior to interview so they are available on the day.

In Tray Exercise

Candidates are given a series of scenarios, emails, memos, notes, reports and messages that they are asked to consider and organise. This will test the candidates ability to prioritise and plan their workload.

Occupational Personality Questionnaires and Ability Tests

These are known collectively as psychometric tests. The ability exercises test verbal reasoning, numerical skills and logical thinking. Occupational Personality Questionnaires are used to identify personality traits in a working situation and can be administered through the completion of a web based questionnaire.

Group Exercise

In this exercise candidates are asked to work together as a group towards a stated end goal.  Each individual may be given a different piece of information to ensure that the exercise provides stretch and challenge, as well as some background information to explain the activity and situation. Alternatively, the group may be given a business case study, which has to be analysed and understood before making suggestions for subsequent action. 

Group exercises are useful for assessing behaviour and leadership and problem solving skills. This exercise usually takes approximately one hour and will require assessors.  It is recommended that the interview panel act as assessors/observers as this will contribute to their final decision making.

Assessment Centre

This combines various exercises, tests and interviews. This may include a group exercise, carousel interviews, when they move from one panel to another, psychometric tests, written report writing etc.

It may also involve the use of assessors to observe the candidates behaviour and leadership and problem solving skills.

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