KPMG Assessment Centre Success Guide

In this guide, we shall provide you some insights on what to expect and how to succeed at the KPMG assessment centre which is considered as one of the most difficult assessment tests. In this guide, you will also get to access to some tips and tricks as well. 

Get a copy of you Ultimate Assessment Day & Interview Guide here. 

Important point:

Employers use different test suppliers and an important tip – KPMG uses Cubiks tests. If you wish to practice, click  here .

Quick overview of KPMG

KPMG is a popular huge company that offers professional advisory, tax and audit services. They have about 12,000 employees and partners in the UK. They offer guidance by identifying growth opportunities, improve cash management and regulatory compliance. 

With KPMG’s reputation of being a great company, numerous job seekers would like to land a job with them. This makes the competition tough and fierce. Furthermore, with their working environment which provides employees growth has continuously attracted applicants. Though there are numerous applicants and candidates, KPMG has a rigorous recruitment process where candidates would have to spend a day at the KPMG assessment centre. With this said, for one to succeed, you would need to prepare and study a lot. 

Prior to Attending the KPMG Assessment Centre

One way to show your interest to your assessors is by spending time learning and researching about their clients and business they operate in. 

Tip: Check KPMG’s annual report. Make notes and internalize the key points you will find in their site .  Mention these during your interview and for sure, your interviewer/assessor will be impressed and will mark you as someone who has an eye for detail and good commercial acumen. 

KPMG assessment tests

If you are applying for a job position at KPMG, be ready to face an intensive series of tests included in the KPMG assessment centre before you will be able to reach the final interview.  You will have to take and score high in two online tests before you will be able to proceed the KPMG assessment centre. If you wish to practice, click here . You will be given 20 minutes to complete the tests. Take note that these two online tests are very different from the ones that you will experience at the KPMG assessment centre. The first test assesses your numerical ability while the second test assesses the verbal skills. 

The numerical reasoning test has 24 questions with six sets of data. In this test, you will need to analyze the data- percentages, charts and graphs. Per data set, you could expect four questions. For each question, you will be provided with five choices which you will have to choose the correct answer from.

The verbal reasoning test on the other hand, you will need to read each text provided. You will need to carefully understand the information as well. In this test, you will be given 10 texts with 4 questions each and options- true, false and cannot determine from the information. For more tips, visit numerical reasoning and verbal reasoning section guides.

What happens if I pass KPMG’s online tests?

If your score reached their passing mark, you will be reached by KPMG and they will arrange a phone interview. Phone interviews usually lasts for about 45 minutes and in this 45 minutes you will be given scenario based questions that will assess your skills. In this part of the assessment, ensure to incorporate in your answers the KPMG key competencies and ensure you will not violate any of their core values. Practice your phone interview here.

If you passed their telephone interview, you will be invited to attend the KPMG assessment centre. 

Tip: before you take any assessment, ensure that you read some KPMG case studies. This way you will be able to have an idea of their work processes, aims, language they use and terminologies as well. Click here to find KPMG case studies  

KPMG assessment centre guidance videos 

Watch this YouTube video from GreenTurn which discusses some important information on KPMG.  

About the KPMG Assessment Centre Assessment Day

If you get this far and get invited to the KPMG assessment centre, be ready to be there for an entire day to participate in different exercises. It will be a tough day, so prepare yourself. Read “How to Prepare for an Assessment Centre” to help you.

The exercises that you will encounter and will be provided with will mostly revolve around a fictional organization and personnel. In these exercises, you will be assessed on your skills and capabilities and if you fit their organization. They will also assess if you possess their core values. 

The KPMG core values are part of the company’s standards which they require from their employees and which they look for in the candidates. Hence, the candidates are expected to demonstrate these traits and they are the following:

  • Leading by example
  • Working as part of a team
  • Acting with integrity
  • Showing respect for the individual
  • Being honest and open in communications
  • Demonstrating a commitment to your community
  • Seeking facts to provide insight

Download our 12-step assessment day cheatsheet as part of your preparation for your assessment centre. 

How important is this?

This is very important and also together with their core values, they would also want to see the key competencies as well. They would want to see the candidates exhibit the following competencies:

  • Career resilience and motivation
  • Professional judgement
  • Ability to include others and collaborate with them
  • Continually striving for improvement
  • Demonstrating curiosity and innovation
  • Delivering quality work
  • Seizing business opportunities that present themselves
  • Demonstrating that you can have a positive impact

Take note that there are many other factors that the KPMG assessment centre assesses. However, those who exhibit the core values and key competencies are those who tend to get better scores.

Though the exercises that you will face in the KPMG assessment centre is tough and rigorous, it gives you the opportunity to shine and show the assessors how well you will fit in their organization. It is also your opportunity to project the values mentioned above. 

KPMG Assessment Centre Virtual Office Exercise

The virtual office exercise measures the ability of the candidates to make sound decisions under stress and pressure. The stress that is introduce in this exercise includes the time limit to complete the tasks given to you. You will only have one hour to complete the tasks such as memos, emails, documents furnished to you and other communications. This type of exercise is similar to the in-tray exercise which could be found on this link.

You will need to analyze every item and you will need also need to determine its priority. In this exercise, you could imagine that you just came from a holiday and just returned back to work. For sure, you will have many massages and work waiting for you and you would need to deal with each. 

KPMG’s assessment centre assesses multiple skills including:

  • How you interact with others
  • Basic intelligence
  • Time management skills and how efficient you are
  • Leadership skills and delegating skills- prioritizing tasks, assuming responsibility and decision-making skills.
  • understanding the company’s structure and culture

KPMG Assessment Centre Analysis Exercise

The next exercise is an hour long test which tests how much information you could quickly gather and use it to write an original report. Your report should have at least 1500 words or approximately three pages. 

The information will be given to you and all the information involves a client. You will have to analyze the information and identify the problem of the client. You will also have to determine the actions that would help the client’s operation garner greater profits. Also, your report should include specific issues and your recommendations as well. 

Take in mind while doing this exercise that the assessors will look for key competencies on your report. Hence, ensure that you demonstrate this in your report. 

KPMG Assessment Centre Role Playing Exercises

Role play 1- huge part of your assessment centre would be spent in role-playing exercises and these role-playing exercises would consist of two simulated situations wherein you will have to demonstrate your key competencies and core values. The first part is between you and a client and the second part is between you and your department manager. 

First scenario- you have conducted business with a prospective client while you were with a previous employer. For some reason, the relationship soured and the client still has some negative feelings about you. 

In the scenario provided, you must demonstrate your skills and your ability to rebuild the relationship with the client. You must convince your client that you are professional and that you will be able to serve their needs. 

Role play 2- the second role play scenario is that you will attend a meeting with your department manager and you will have to report the results that you have obtained in the meeting. In this exercise, you will have to detail what had happened and explain how you will move forward. 

Ensure that for both role playing exercises, you will not violate or compromise any of the core values of KPMG. 

To help you more, check our role-play success guide here.

After KPMG Assessment Centre

Once you have passed the assessment centre, you will receive an invitation to go to the additional interview. At this phase, the interview could last for an hour and this is normally conducted by a partner or the director who is in charge for the area of your expertise. Aside from that, do not be surprise as you might also be asked to present. Check our presentation success guide here.

The KPMG interview

Again, we would like to emphasize the importance of the key competencies. Before your interview, ensure that you have learned and absorbed the key competencies. Prepare sample interview answers.

Questions could differ and vary however, expect that you will be asked about your career goals and why you would want to work for KPMG. You will also be asked to discuss a current event and how it could affect businesses and the overall economy. Also, you might be asked what you expect from the company while you are training. 

Before your interview, ensure that you prepare. You could do this by anticipating the types of questions that could be asked. Check the usual questions asked here . Practice your answers. Again, remember to insert some evidence of the key competencies. This interview is your last step. Ensure that you prepare properly and you would surely get the job. 

Update your CV before your Interview

One of the biggest mistakes when going to your interview is not improving your CV. Here’s why:

  1. Update your CV before the interview event and take with you a fresh, newly and improved version. One that is tailored to the job or role you would want. 
  2. In interviews, one of the basis of your interview will come from the information on your CV. No matter the interview is competency based or no. You will have to answer the questions based on your CV. 
  3. Your CV is one of the basis in the hiring decision process. It is your CV that they look at when they decide whether to hire you or not. 

The CV is the one that reminds the hiring manager of what your skills and experiences are and what happened during your hiring process. Aside from that, your CV is also your first and last impression. With this, we remind you to make your CV as strong as you could. 

FastMaths – Case Study Interview Preparation

Below is a link of a course taught by Matthew Tambiah. . In this course, he teaches techniques which could help candidates solve quickly commercial problems. If you are looking for a job in companies like KPMG, PWC and Deloitte, this course is perfect for you. 

The course has two parts and they are:

  1. First part shows techniques on how to solve numerical calculations quickly without using a calculator or a spreadsheet. 
  2. The second half show the common types of quantitative problems given in case study interviews. In this part, you will be provided with solution methods for each problem type. 

In this course, you will learn how to use results of quantitative analysis to generate insights and recommendations. 

Articles which could help you…

  • Will you be taking a numerical reasoning test or verbal reasoning test? If yes, we suggest that you check out our aptitude tests section.
  • You could find practice tests and get free advice on other types of reasoning tests like numerical, logical, verbal, abstract, inductive, Watson- Glaser, spatial, diagrammatic, mechanical comprehension and UKCAT
  • Are you worried about your assessment day or performing a presentation or preparing for an interview or group/in-tray exercise?
  • Would you like to get some guidance on how to deal with nerves and anxiety at your interview?
  • Check our tools and resources page.