Book Review - "Now You've Been Shortlisted"
Author: Denise Taylor
Publisher: Harriman House Publishing
Size: 255 pages
Reviewed by Lindsay Scott
If you?re a project management professional and looking for a book to help prepare you for the testing elements of the recruitment process this might well be the book for you. Contrary to the by-line for the book ?Your step-by-step guide to being successful at interviews and assessment centres- the vast majority of this book features the various tests that can be conducted during the process.
Kicking off with an employers view of the recruitment process ? designed I suspect to help you appreciate where they?re coming from and potentially give you the competitive edge for knowing, it falls short at actually giving any kind of in-depth or practical hints and advice. Moving onto ?Preparing for Success? there is nothing in this chapter that can?t be sourced via the internet doing a 10 minute search on getting ready for an interview.
The book starts to come into its own when looking at the various tests available ? grouped together in a chapter called Psychometric Testing ? it covers all those tests likely to feature in a project management recruitment process ? including verbal reasoning, critical thinking, numerical, abstract reasoning and personality. Each type of test is covered separately with background to the ?what? and ?how? of each test plus some practical examples to work through (on average 4 test examples per chapter). The book also includes web references to other testing websites and a free access login and code for one particular website. I tried the verbal reasoning test online and it was thorough and took 40 minutes to complete. There are four to choose from. This resource alone is worth the price of the book.
The next part of the book concentrates on ?assessment centres? and whilst these centres don?t tend to appear very much in a project management recruitment process there is still much in this chapter to read and take away. Areas such as preparing for a presentation (not just something carried out in ?assessment centres?) is something project professionals tend to experience a lot at interviews. This section breaks it down to 5 minutes, 10-20 minutes (with limited prep time) and 15-20 minutes (with prep in advance). The chapters are short though so don?t expect a ?guide to? creating presentations in any great depth. There are also other scenarios which a project professional could experience during the recruitment process including written exercises and in-tray exercises with a small nod to scheduling and planning exercises specifically for project roles.
The final part of the book is centred on the interview itself, again there?s nothing really new here that couldn?t be found from around the web. If you?re looking a book which brings all the useful stuff into one place though and is well written, concise and considered, Now You?ve Been Shortlisted is worth the purchase price of around £7-8 (current Amazon prices). The interview section includes examples of standard questions ? with preferred answers or giving direction to help personalise the response. There is also a section on getting ready to ask questions yourself towards the end of the interview.
All in all, this book is great for anyone who will be facing specific tests as part of the recruitment process. It?s also useful for anyone who may not have been in the job market for a number of years and wants a one-stop shop for getting up to speed with the interview and testing areas of the recruitment process.
ABOUT THE REVIEWER: Lindsay Scott is a Director of Arras People.