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I have my Assessment coming up and I'm wondering  if any one has any good advice when taking the written test.


This is the part I'm worrying about the most as I have been out of the school/college report writing for a while and while I would like to practise I really don't have anything to practice with.


What sort of things are they looking for, what would be a good report. Has any one any tips on how to do it and do it well in twenty minutes !


Also why is the pass rate 44% ? and how do they score it and the other tests?


Thanks Big%20smile
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  • Biker girl


  • Wee Man


  • Salsoul


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Try not to worry too much, at least you have found this site prior to your assessment day, maybe if I had I would have done even better.

I found the written reports quite simple, just remember that you are being tested on the core competencies.

I got an A for written communication in one of them and a D in the other.

Not really sure how they worked this out as they were virtually the same apart from the topic.

Maybe work on your spelling, but really the day is an assessment across the areas and those not great at one thing may be fantastic at another.

You will be relieved once it's over.

Good luck, I have my fitness test and interview tomorrow!

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You will have 20 mins for each of the written exercises, you will also be given paper to make rough notes on. 

Time management is the key, don;t spend ages making notes, get the key points from the candidate instructions, make brief notes if necessary.  Concentrate your efforts on writing up your answer on the proposal document template. Use simple language, and words you know you can spell, you don't get extra marks for flowery language, this just increases your chances of making spelling mistakes which would affect your written communication score. 

Don't look around the room, because I know of people who have wrote half a side of A4 then panicked bacause they saw someone else writing reams and reams, ignore others in the room.

If possible give yourself at least a minute at the end just to read through your answer to make sure there are no obvious errors.

Make sure you strike a line through any rough notes you make otherwise they will be marked.  Also read the Info for Candidates and the Westshire Centre welcome pack.  Good Luck!
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I have questions too if anyone can help? I am practising a written response, and have a lot of report writing knowledge but this one bugs me -

The task: after receiving a letter of complaint from a disabled person re: disabled car parking provision being poor, you are asked by your manager to investigate and indicate how you would respond to the complaint.

-SO- Do I:

a) say i will look to resolve the issue by ... and then say i'll respond to Mr X in writing giving my sincere apologies...promising resolution..blah blah


b)say I have investigated the issue and have planned a response as followed and then just write an example letter.

Is that question clear?

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Remember two of the competencies being assessed are:-

Personal Responsibility - ie don't pass the buck

Problem Solving - ie what are you going to recommend or do?

Therefore in light of the above example, its not enough just to apologise, they want want to see specific proposals.  Another clue is that the sheet you write on is called a 'Proposal Document Template'

Hope this helps!
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Thanks Salsoul ...... again !!


I keep picking your brains don't I !


Just want to be as prepared as I can!
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  • 4 weeks later...


    This is my first posting, I only found out about this site today, but it looks like you can get some good information! I hope so anyway, have my assessment friday!

    I was wondering whether if you are supposed to be reporting on what you plan to do in the future about the issue as they are called proposal documents?

   In the book I've been reading it gives the impression that you're supposed to be writing about what you have already done.
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Hi Guys...

Right.....I wanna explain this issue a bit more so that the chaps on here offerning advice, know exactly what we want advice on!


An example I have is from the How2Become CD-ROM, reading it I am assuming it fits in nicely with the Westshire Centre SEARCH pack.


It goes something like this...


There has been a report that the caretaker failed to respond to a fire alarm on a nightshift at the Centre.

Operations Manager (Our boss) has written to us asking for a report on what happened, why and what we propose to do about it.


However...The "detailed" information provided is an appraisal on the caretaker, written by his boss and the letter itself by the Ops Mgr.


There isn't much to go on there really and beings as the Ops Mgr is informing us about it, it seems he knows what was going on alredy.

I can't tell what he wants us to propose....This is where I think CT65's question comes in.....We need help!!!!
Biker girl2007-03-20 14:14:24
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B.K. & CT...

Hiya. I've been racking my brains trying to remember a pneumonic for what I'm about to say, but can't remember the four letters so.....

I had to do something similar recently for my promotion board and the Ospre Part 2 exam. Basically, the advice given to me which served me well and would fit here is to answer questions like this in the following manner:

a) confirm you understand the problem at the begining of the response (whether to a boss or in a reply to the person making complaint). So begin by "thank you for your letter. I understand that you are experiencing a problem whereby....."
B) state what you are able to do, thus managing their expectations by not promising the Earth.
c) state that, however, other agencies may be able to help (i.e. for parking issues perhaps say that you will contact the Council on their behalf as they have the authority over parking issues).
Both B) and c) offer solutions to the person's problem.
d) take personal responsability by giving yourself as a point of contact (i.e. if you have any further questions please contact me at....)
e) try and build in a time frame (i will get back to you with a definitive answer within 14 days etc)

The above would probably fit more with a proposal document, perhaps where you are replying to the person directly. But it also fits with a response to a senior officer asking what you have done with the complaint, or indeed what you intend to do.

For Biker's specific example, one of the things missing is detail. So when the Ops Mgr asks what you're going to do then one of the things you need to say is "investigate in order that I have the fullest possible information".

You'd show an understanding that this may have resulted in a serious fire which would have gone un-noticed and, as such, is a situation that needs to be dealt with.

You'd show lateral thinking by saying you'd investigate whether the alarm was clearly audible throughout the building as it's possible the caretaker didn't realise there was an alarm to respond to! If there's a problem then the solution is to fix the alarm and ensure that the caretaker understands his responsabilities. You can throw in that you'd check this by maybe holding a fire drill to check that things went as they're supposed to.

If it turns out that the caretaker was negligent in that he knew there was an alarm, knew what he should have done but couldn't be ar*ed to do it then you have to set out that you're prepared to deal with this too.

This would involve brining him in for an interview with his manager and you. You would ensure that the proper internal discilplinary procedures were adhered to and begin procedings for a disciplinary hearing.

Hope this long, rambling nonsense makes some sort of sense??? Smile

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Thanks for joining us Weeman...It makes loads of sense. The worrying thing is that I didn't think of any of that when reading the Wiltshire Centre pack thingy. Now I know you're small, but unless you're small enough to fit in my pocket come assessment day...I'm screwed! Cry

Thank you though!!! I'm sure CT65 will add her tuppence worth when she comes back!

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Thanks for joining us Weeman...It makes loads of sense. The worrying thing is that I didn't think of any of that when reading the Wiltshire Centre pack thingy. Now I know you're small' date=' but unless you're small enough to fit in my pocket come assessment day...I'm screwed! Cry

Thank you though!!! I'm sure CT65 will add her tuppence worth when she comes back!


I wouldn't have thought about all that sort of stuff (and my answer's not definitive, just a few thoughts) before. It's honestly just a case of getting your head round what they're looking for.

The ability to make decisions based on good reasoning. Not jumping to conclusions. Not being afraid to take responsability.

Once you've done a few it becomes sort of second nature to approach a problem like that in a certain way.
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Yeah you're right.....I have read through your advice a couple of times and already I know that I'll remember what you've said and be able to go from there myself.

I think I just needed the initial push to know what the f**k would be expected from me if I was in that position.

I can also see where the Core Competencies come in from what you've written so I must be learning something! lol


I take it all these assessment books have a few examples to use and try? Do they offer feedback on a response to do you know?
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Lol, glad all those emails came in handy for something!!!

I was imagining your face when you opened your email, saw all those bu**ers and thought "what the ****!" LOL
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Ha.....That's exactly what I thought!!


The way they were set out in that list form didn't help much either. However that was better in the end as it made me write them out in a way and layout that I could work with and understand...Made me learn them I tell you!!


I just hope i'm not too nervous on the day that I don't mentally refer to them!
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Gotta be careful not to overload yourself with them too.

For what it's worth, I'd be looking to just have a general awareness of them so read them through with a view to knowing about them rather than knowing them.
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