GlaxoSmithKline (GSK)

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GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) is a global company with 99 sites across 39 countries, including 20 sites in the UK alone.

UK Offices

GlaxoSmithKline's global headquarters is GSK House, Brentford, Middlesex. There are another 19 company sites in the UK: Barnard Castle (Co Durham), Beckenham, Coleford, Crawley Park, Dartford, Greenford, Harlow, Irvine, Maidenhead, Montrose, Slough, Stevenage, Stockley Park, The Frythe, Tonbridge, Ulverston, Ware, Weybridge, Worthing.

Graduate Schemes

GSK offer the following graduate schemes:

  • Sales and Marketing
  • Finance
  • Purchasing
  • IT
  • Engineering
  • Science
  • Statistics
  • Manufacturing
  • Regulatory

Interview & Application Process

The application and interview process at GSK is as follows:

Read full details about the application and interview process at GSK.

Interview and Assessment Process

Every interview at GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) is based around the following three questions:

  • What makes you the ideal candidate for the job?
  • What is it about the role that interests you?
  • Why have you decided to apply for GSK?

The GSK assessment centre consists of five exercises:

NOTE: For those applying to the pharmaceutical marketing summer placement- the assessment centre is the same as that for the grad scheme decribed here.

For a technical placement there is a technical interview rather than a competency based interview and there is also a technical presententation based on a solution to a problem that will be sent to you inadvance of the assessment centre.

Analytical Reasoning Test

This test involves specific scenarios. Questions will be similar to the following:

  • (1) Your group will be given the scenario of a product sale, its characteristics and the target audience. The sale types were four:


Then assessors will give you a new product and ask you to classify the product to the sale type.

  • (2) You will be given four groups of shapes. Your group will have to identify the rule that connects each shape.

Role Play

You will have to read a paragraph about a situation and respond to it. Your role may be a manager and your assessor will play the part of an employee. The scenario may involve something like the employee wanting to leave the company. You will have to decide whether to let them go or persuade them to stay. In order to decide, you should ask a lot of questions that you think are relevant. The final goal of the exercise will be to identify the reason that the employee wants to leave and explain why you asked specific questions.

Group Exercise / Presentation

In order to complete the group exercise and the presentation you will be given a booklet the day before the assessment centre. This will include information about a virtual pharma company and the different departments and business units. You will have to read this and work out the way the company works.

The next day you will be given five different solutions to invest in, one to each candidate. The goal of the exercise will be to present your investment solution according to the information given and the information in the booklet. The presentation will be made in front of two recruiters and the other team members. Each candidate will only get five minutes to present.

Presentation / Meeting

After the presentation, you will have to conduct a “meeting” and decide which of the solutions presented is best to invest in. You will be given some instructions to follow and you will be able to use the information in the booklet as well. This is not difficult and the recruiters will not be concerned with the result, only about the way you and other candidates communicate.


This interview will be a typical competency based interview, much like the original telephone interview.

The key competencies GSK are looking for throughout the day are:
- information gathering and search
- identify advanced business solutions
- developing people
- selling ideas and under-leading people
- communication
- achieving change (taking responsibility)
- customer focus
- measure success (improve)

GSK are looking for candidates who score at least 3/5 in every competency - so good all rounders.