I’ve been using this website and the great information people have taken the time to write up for over 5 months in my job search, so, having finally been offered a job, I thought I’d give something back and describe my assessment centre. This may or may not be of use, but here we go:
I’ve just had my Assessment Centre (AC) for the Lloyd’s of London Claims Talent Programme on Friday 25th of February, having had my telephone interview on the 13th of January. I can’t really remember much about the interview, except that it lasted around 25 minutes, it didn’t involve any motivational or commercial awareness questions at all and I needed to be fairly concise with my answers to fit in the 4 competency questions. I heard back from them the next day, I think.
As for the AC, I didn’t have to prepare anything in advance, but I made sure I knew about a few things in detail (not that all of this came up): - The challenges faced by the insurance industry now and in the future - The structure of Lloyd’s and the market, i.e. who does what and the life cycle of an insurance policy and claim - Why I wanted to work in Lloyd’s - Why Claims, etc
We had to arrive for a 9:45am start on Friday so it wasn’t too early at all, but it was a long day. Initially we had a briefing for the day, had a look at the timetable and got to know each other and the assessors a bit; they asked us for a funny fact about ourselves which was nice. There were 10 candidates in total I think and everyone got on incredibly well from the start – I’m not going to say the day was great fun but with such a good group it was borderline enjoyable. We were told the day would involve a group exercise, a role play, an interview, a written exercise, a presentation and a numerical reasoning test, as well as a tour of the Lloyd’s building and the chance to meet current graduates on the programme. It was pretty busy but seriously well organised. I should probably say that the timings won’t be exact...
So, first off was the group exercise for which they split us into two groups of 5. We were each given an information document of about 4 pages to read through individually and note in 15 minutes, which was plenty of time, and then escorted into a separate room. The task was to work out the underlying cause of a recent increase in error rate on the part of a data analyst/clerk and come to conclusion as a group. We were then joined by 2 assessors and had about 25 minutes in which to discuss the ideas and come to a group conclusion, though we didn’t require the whole time period allowed. This was quite enjoyable really, though this might have been because we all got on well together – there was little if any time pressure.
The second task was the role play, which was conducted individually. I was escorted into another room and asked to read through another document in 20 minutes, after which I would be joined by an assessor and somebody playing the part of my opposite number in the role play. The situation involved the negotiations between an oil company (who I represented) and an environmental consultancy/research firm (played by a Lloyd’s employee). I needed to negotiate a research contract between the two parties with various limitations as outlined in the document, such as research duration, budget, human capital contributions, intellectual property rights, and advertising & marketing. For the actual role play we had 25 minutes maximum in which to agree terms and I’ve got to say it was pretty good fun.
The third exercise was a quick interview which lasted 20 minutes and was purely competency based. Pretty straight forward stuff really, quite relaxed too. Questions included: ‘When have you received good feedback and acted on it?’ and ‘When have you had to change your leadership style?’
Next up we had lunch in the main AC room which we were using as a base for the day. Standard sandwiches, crisps and coffee affair but it was nice and relaxed. We chatted amongst ourselves until a couple of Lloyd’s graduates came in to answer a few of our questions. They loved their jobs which was encouraging.
The fourth exercise was the written exercise. To be honest I was surprised to find this the toughest of the day. We were given a document of about 12 pages concerning information on two prospective factory sites, using which we were required to choose one site and explain why. The information included basic facts about the sites, such as size, rent, and equipment, information on the surroundings, such as local towns and infrastructure, and general macro-economic information on the region. On top of this we had to take into account the opinions of various individuals within the company you represent as to the viability of the two sites. The task lasted 1 hour, during which we had to write our appraisal and provide any accompanying diagrams.
The fifth exercise rolled on from the written exercise, basically we had 15 minutes to prepare a presentation on the decision we made in the previous exercise. We didn’t use powerpoint but we were allowed to use one of those flip charts. The presentation was done individually in a separate room with two assessors and it was followed by 15 minutes of questions; nothing to worry about here, the assessors weren’t evil.
The sixth and final exercise was a standard written numerical test lasting 20 minutes. Apparently it was harder than the online one but I can’t remember, there were only 20 questions. I am not exceptional at maths by any stretch of the imagination and I found it fine.
Following this we had a short tour of the building, which is, I must say, awesome. Finally we had a brief chat with the head of claims at Lloyd’s which was a nice touch, he was a great guy. The whole day must have finished at about 5:30pm.
I was then called on Monday before lunch to hear I had been successful and was offered a job. I couldn’t recommend Lloyd’s of London more based on this AC, which was superb – the best I’ve had yet.
This will probably be more relevant to those who apply next year as I might have missed the application deadline, but if there are any questions feel free to ask and I’ll do my best to answer.