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Are you interested in joining the next cohort for the Civil Service graduate programs or early careers 2024? This ultimate guide provides everything you need for your Civil Service online assessment practice.

Our website provides scientifically validated practice assessments tests, interviews and assessment centre exercises that can be used to practice and prepare for the recruitment and assessment process. 

Check here for Free and Premium aptitude assessment tests and video interviews to practice and prepare for Civil Service recruitment.

Not sure if you should practice to prepare for the Civil Service assessments? According to research, 60-80% of candidates are rejected based on their aptitude tests results. It is proven that practice increases your chances of getting hired.

A recent study (Bradley et al, 2019) found that candidates who do not practise assessments, tend to fail at the first hurdle of psychometric assessments (54%-84%). This study looked at the Top 100 global employers.


How to prepare for the Civil Service assessment process and tests to get the job?

  1. Complete your Civil Service Application
  • Fill in your Civil Service application form online
  • Answer each of the questions honestly and apply as early as possible
  • Match your application to the Civil Service’s values and behaviours
  • Use language from the job post in your resume and application.
  1. Practice for Civil Service Online Assessment Tests

The Civil Service uses a variety of aptitude assessment tests. These may include:

You may get rejected already after these aptitude tests; these tests sift out 50-80% candidates at this stage. The only proven way to get to the next round is practice.

  1. Prepare for the Civil Service Assessment Centre exercises

The Civil Service employs the use of various competitive exercises during the assessment centre to assess and pick the best candidates. Ensure you practice a variety of exercises including:

Hone your written and spoken communication technique. Research online, prepare and practice presentation of as many business case studies as possible.

Be aware; not many get to this stage. The competition is very fierce.

  1. Record mock video interviews of yourself

Prepare for your one-on-one interview with a senior manager. Expect and practice for behavioural and competency-based questions. Aim to stand out. They have interviewed dozens or hundreds of candidates at this final stage.

Refine your technique for your final Civil Service interview to showcase your:

  • deep knowledge 
  • understanding of the role
  • business acumen
  • passion
  • critical thinking and ability to think on your feet

For your final interview, use our video interview platform and record yourself answering the interview questions using the STAR+R method.

Continue reading to get answers to these critical questions:

  1. What is the Civil Service?
  2. What is the Civil Service Success Profile?
  3. How do I pass the Civil Service assessment test?
  4. How can I pass the Civil Service interview?
  5. How to prepare for the Civil Service virtual assessment centre?

Looking into assessments with the Civil Service, simply click in the table below to practice assessments relevant to your assessment process!

Relevant Assessments to Civil ServicePractice Now
Verbal ReasoningStart Practicing
Numerical ReasoningStart Practicing
Situational JudgementStart Practicing
Personality Questionnaire Start Practicing
Video InterviewsStart Practicing
Assessment CentreStart Practicing

Get the Premium practice assessments to prepare for these Civil Service assessments with us and practice over 2,300+ unique assessment questions

What is the Civil Service?

The UK Civil Service is the permanent bureaucracy of the crown employees, supporting the government of the UK in administration. These employees are not members of the British parliament, but assist the ministers on policy development and implementation.

 Civil Service employees are defined as “politically impartial” and help to deliver the work that the current government in place requires at the time.

How can you join the Civil Service?

To join the Civil Service, there are many routes into the 24 departments into which it is divided.

Whether you are a graduate or a professional, there is an application path, including Civil Service aptitude tests, for you to become part of the Civil Service. 

You can apply to the Civil Service through any of the following routes. 

  • Civil Service Fast Stream
  • Civil Service Direct Entry
  • Civil Service Internships
    • Summer Diversity Internship
    • Early Diversity Internship

Below are some of the key Civil Service departments and roles you can apply for:

Civil Service DepartmentsRoles
Cabinet Office
Assurance & Compliance AnalystData AnalystHR Operations Officer
Competition & Market AuthoritySubsidy AdviserStrategy, Complaints and Enquiries Manager
Crown Prosecution ServiceProduct ownerSocial ResearcherLiaison Prosecutor
Defence Science and Technology LaboratoryICT TechnicianSystems Security EngineerTest and Evaluation Scientist
Department for Business and TradeInvestment AdviserData Account Manager

Throughout your application to the Civil Service, ensure that you keep in mind their values and Success Profile. But what are these? Keep reading to find out more!

The Civil Service Core Values and Success Profile

What are the Civil Service values?

The Civil Service code indicates the core values of the Civil Service and the standards of behaviours required of all civil servants. This includes;

  1. Integrity – As a civil servant, you are expected to put priority in your public service duties.
  2. Honesty – All civil servants are expected to be transparent in their duties, by being truthful and open.
  3. Objectivity – Decisions should be made based on proper analysis of the evidence
  4. Impartiality – The Civil Service is regarded as politically impartial. This portrays an act of equal treatment to different political parties and acting according to merits of the case.

What is the Civil Service success profile?

The success profile is a framework used by the Civil Service to attract and retain talents from different sectors, in accordance with the Civil Service workforce plan commitment.

The success profile framework introduces assessment of candidates against several elements, such as: 

  1. Behaviours – Actions attributed to effective performance in a job. 
  2. Strengths – well-practiced actions that are done well and that motivate us.
  3. Ability – The potential to improve and perform at the required level.
  4. Experience – First-hand knowledge and understanding of a subject or activity.
  5. Technical – Demonstrating the key knowledge and skills in the job.

Good to know: The Civil Service behaviours that are assessed are specific to the grade level and requirements of the job role. Check the job description to understand which key Civil Service behaviours are ideal for the job.

The Civil Service success profile framework aims to divert the recruitment process from using only a competency based system form of assessment with differing selection methods depending on the role. 

So how is this used for your upcoming application process? Keep reading to find out how.

Civil Service Recruitment Process

What is the Civil Service application process?

The Civil Service hiring process can vary depending on the grade level and the job requirements. However, the typical recruitment process is made of 4 important steps. These steps are:

  1. Civil Service Online Application
  2. Civil Service Online Tests
  3. Civil Service Video Interview
  4. Civil Service Assessment Centre

Without further ado, let’s dive in!

Civil Service Online Application

What is the Civil Service online application?

The Civil Service online application form is the first step after you have found a role that suits your skills and interests you. You will be asked for details of your personal information, previous education and experiences.

This is a good chance to impress your recruiters, therefore take your time to tailor your skills/experiences to the requirements of the job role. 

Civil Service application form
Civil Service Application Form
Source: Civil Service Jobs

Civil Service Application tip: Ensure you meet the minimum requirements for experience and behaviours for the role you apply for.

Depending on the role you apply for, you might be asked for a CV and a personal statement. The personal statement is an opportunity for you to prove how your skills are relevant and why you should get the job.

Top 7 Tips to write a good Civil Service CV and Cover Letter

Below are basic tips to consider while writing your Civil Service CV and cover letter or personal statement:

  1. Create your first draft offline. Ensure you cross-check for spellings and grammar errors.
  1. Write within the word limit. It is advised to create your personal statement around the set word limit to provide depth in your write-up.
  1. Use the STAR+R method for your answers. Narrate your skills and experiences in terms of a scenario, what you did and how you did it.
  1. Check the requirements to make sure you are doing the right thing. Read the job description carefully.
  1. Keep your CV to 1-2 pages max and ensure it is well structured in a way that is easily understandable for your recruiter.
  1. Include only relevant experiences to your CV. Include your work experiences that are relevant to the job description and leave out any information that could make your CV look bulky.
  1. Check for errors. After you are done writing your CV and personal statement, proofread for errors, or use a spellchecker. Employers check for minimal errors to slim down the list of candidates.

Once you have submitted your application form, it will be screened against the job criteria. If successful, you will be invited to take some online tests. 

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Civil Service Online Tests

What are the Civil Service online tests?

The Civil Service selection tests are Cubiks psychometric tests used to assess your mental ability, strengths and potentials required of the job role you applied for. The tests are to be answered in English or Welsh and are usually not timed.

What tests do Civil Service use?

The Civil Service psychometric tests may include:

  1. Civil Service Verbal Reasoning Test
  2. Civil Service Numerical Reasoning Test
  3. Civil Service Judgement Test
  4. Civil Service Management Judgement Test
  5. Civil Service Work Strengths Test
  6. Civil Service Customer Service Skills Test
  7. Civil Service Casework Skills Test

Good to know: Depending on the job you have applied for, you may be asked to complete one or more of these Civil Service online tests.

Let’s check out what to expect in each test below, starting with the Civil Service verbal reasoning test.

1. Civil Service Verbal Reasoning Test

What is a Civil Service verbal test?

The Civil Service verbal reasoning test is used to assess your ability to read, understand and come up with logical conclusions from a written text. In the verbal reasoning test, you will be given a passage along with a statement. 

You are required to read and comprehend the information given in the paragraph, then decide if the statement provided is, ‘true’, ‘false’ or ‘cannot say’.

How many questions in the Civil Service verbal test?

The Civil Service verbal reasoning tests are usually untimed and adapt to your performance. Therefore, the tests can vary in length depending on how many you get wrong or right. 

Gain key insights in this under 1 minute video about the Civil Service verbal reasoning test:

What Is a Verbal Reasoning Test? #shorts

Want to practice more such free questions similar to those of Civil Service verbal test questions, register with GF and take your free verbal reasoning test now!

Have a go at this Civil Service practice test question below designed by our expert team at GF. 

Civil Service-Style Verbal Test Question Example 

Civil Service verbal reasoning question example

Got the answer? Check it out at the bottom of the page.

How to ace the Civil Service verbal reasoning test? 

  1. Enhance your vocabulary: Get comfortable with reading short pieces of text on new topics. Try to speak the meaning of a passage out loud after your first read.
  1. Balance your speed and accuracy: Establish a routine that works for you, so that you do not sacrifice either of these in the real thing.
  1. Practice is essential: You can prepare using our industry standard verbal reasoning tests, designed by former SHL psychometricians, and assessment experts.
  1. Read the email invitation and test instructions carefully. This will have all the information you need. Only use the information provided in the question for your answers. 
  1. Understand the answer options: You are required to pick ‘true’ if a statement is accurate, ‘false’, when you do not support the statement, and ‘cannot say’ for when you cannot decide based on the details provided.

For your Civil Service practice, discover even more verbal reasoning tips ahead of your Civil Service verbal test with our short video below!

Top 5 Verbal reasoning test tips and tricks (2024)

For even more Civil Service verbal reasoning test practice, register with GF today and practice more Civil Service verbal reasoning tests with answers, worked-solutions and professional score reports including personalised tips based on your performance.

With verbal reasoning Success done and dusted, it’s time to become an expert in your Civil Service numerical test answers.

2. Civil Service Numerical Reasoning Test

What is the Civil Service numerical test?

The Civil Service numerical test requires you to answer questions regarding numerical data and assesses your ability to evaluate and interpret the numerical information. 

How many questions in the Civil Service numerical test?

The assessment tests are usually untimed with about 15 -20 quantitative reasoning questions. Depending on your performance, you are more likely to get a harder question next if you get a question right and an easier question next if wrong.

Civil Service numerical tip: You can expect questions on percentage, average, graphs, pie charts, simple interest, compound interest, etc. Ensure to revise these key areas!

Check out this video below to find out more about how the Civil Service numerical reasoning test works!

What Is a Numerical Reasoning Test? 

Want to start your Civil Service numerical test practice right away? Register with GF to sit a free industry standard numerical reasoning test now!

Test your numerical reasoning skills with our example Civil Service numerical test practice question below!

Civil Service-Style Numerical Test Example

Civil Service numerical reasoning free question example

Check if you got this Civil Service numerical test answer correct at the bottom of the page.

How to ace the Civil Service numerical test?

These numerical reasoning tips will get you the edge over other candidates applying to the Civil Service.

  1. Review basic quantitative reasoning such as percentages, averages, currency conversion, interest calculation, etc. 
  1. Practice example Civil Service numerical reasoning questions before the tests to familiarise yourself with the format and the numerical questions typically used. 
  1. Organise your surroundings before your test. Find a quiet place for the test and keep all the equipment such as pencil, paper, etc., ready to make notes.
  1. Read all instructions carefully. To avoid making any mistakes, ensure to pay close attention to what you are expected to do.
  1. Manage your time. While the tests are not timed, the time taken to complete the assessment is still measured. Ensure to complete each question as you may be unable to return to a question later.
  1. Use a reliable internet connection. This is to make sure you do not get logged out while taking the test. However, if you lose connection, you can continue where you left off once you are back online.

To gain even more insight on how to succeed in your Civil Service numerical test, check out our video below!

Do these 3 things during a Numerical Reasoning Test to Succeed #shorts

If you are looking for even more Civil Service numerical reasoning questions with answers, worked-solutions and professional score reports including personalised tips based on your performance – then we at GF have you covered.

You may be invited to take a Civil Service situational judgement test as part of your application process. Find out more below!

3. Civil Service Judgement Test

What is the Civil Service judgement test?

The Civil Service judgement test is a situational judgement test (SJT) used to assess your judgement and decision-making skills in realistic work situations, as well as your behaviour in a Civil Service work environment.

The test is divided into two sections:

Let’s go into details about what to expect in each section.


What is the Civil Service work style questionnaire?

This section of the Civil Service judgement test is similar to what are often referred to as Civil Service work style questionnaires or Civil Service personality tests

This section consists of work related statements, to which you have to respond with the extent to which you agree or disagree with these statements.

5 Top Tips to pass the Civil Service work style questionnaire

Below are some key tips to consider for your Civil Service personality questionnaire

  1. Practice personality test questions before your actual test, to become familiar with the assessment format and gain insight into your own work preferences.
  1. Read the instructions carefully: This is very important before attempting the questionnaire. Ensure to go over the instructions needed to answer each question accurately.
  1. Provide honest answers from a professional perspective. Approach the questions with answers that reflect good work behaviours and ethics, but also accurately show your character traits.
  1. Keep the job role in mind. In certain cases, the questions are crafted in line with the company’s values. Therefore, ensure you highlight your traits and behaviours needed to excel in the role.
  1. Be consistent in your answers. Oftentimes you may be asked clones of questions, this is used by employers to assess a consistent personality profile.

For insights into what Civil Service are looking for in this first section, don’t miss this video!

What do Personality Tests Measure? (SHL OPQ, Big 5 OCEAN Model) #shorts

Register for GF’s work personality package today to gain first-hand insights into a work personality-style test and how employers such as the Civil Service use these in recruitment.


What is the Civil Service behaviours assessment?

In this section, your judgement and decision-making skills are measured, as you’ll be presented with real-life workplace scenarios.

What will the Civil Service behavioural assessment involve?

You will be given scenarios, which will be the potential course of actions, and are expected to provide an effectiveness rating from ‘counterproductive’ to ‘effective’.

Good to know: Depending on the role you apply for, the Civil Service work based scenarios for the behaviour assessment will be presented in form of videos, texts or a mix of both.

Civil Service situational judgement free question example

Top 5 tips to ace your Civil Service situational judgement test

Find key tips to help you pass the Civil Service judgement test below:

  1. Practice: Make sure to familiarise yourself with practice situational judgement test questions, scenarios and answers, so as to know what to expect.
  1. Research Civil Service values and preferred behaviours: Based on the Civil Service success profile, this can give an insight to the responses they want from you.
  1. Read instructions carefully: Go over the instructions and scenario given carefully, as well as the options provided to know what you are required to do.
  1. Choose the best answer for you: Select answers that reflect you but are also in line with the best course of action based on Civil Service behaviours, values and competencies required in the job role.
  1. Think Practical: During your test, consider the option that sounds most efficient and effective in solving the problem described in the scenario.

For more tips on how to ace your Civil Service situational judgement test, check out this less than 1 minute video.

Ace the SJT! | 5 Situational Judgement Test Tips #shorts

Start your Civil Service-style situational judgement test preparation, sign-up for GF’s situational judgement test package today to access real questions, live test reports, and progress charts!

Did you know? Just like the Civil Service judgement test, the Civil Service work-based scenarios test assesses your behaviours, skills and attributes in a work environment.

Now, let us have a look into what to expect for the Civil Service management test.

4. Civil Service Management Test

What is the Civil Service management test?

The Civil Service management judgement test is an online situational judgement test that assesses your ability to demonstrate judgement and decision-making in the day-to-day management of others. The test is untimed, however most people take about 2-4 minutes per scenario.

The Civil Service management test measures the behaviours specific for roles requiring line management success, which are; collaborative, decisive, empathetic, confident and agile. The test involves 15 scenarios each with four actions presented as texts or short videos.

5. Civil Service Work Strengths Test

What is the Civil Service work strengths test?

The Civil Service work strengths test is an untimed online test of your strengths that assesses you through personality questionnaires and situational judgement-like tests. You may get one of two different versions of the test depending on the job level you applied for.

What happens in a Civil Service work strengths test?

The Civil Service work strengths test includes three parts:

  1. Personality questionnaire
  2. Situational judgement test (10 scenarios effectiveness rating)
  3. Situational judgement test (5 scenarios to choose your most and least likely)

6. Civil Service Customer Service Skills Test

What is the Civil Service customer service skills test?

The Civil Service customer service skills test assesses your customer handling skills. It measures your problem-solving skills and traits like comprehension and empathy, which shows how you are able to manage difficult customers, make decisions and your attention to details.

What happens in a Civil Service customer service skills test?

The test involves three parts:

  1. In this first part, you will be required to respond to a range of customer service queries. Your task is to review the scenario and select the best option from 3 responses. You will get a follow-up after this from the customer, with 3 further possible responses.
  1. During the second part, you will be provided with a customer service setting where you will view 6 workplace scenarios along with 4 possible actions. You are to read the scenario and provide an effectiveness rating for each action.
  1. The last part of the assessment is timed. You will have 10 minutes to identify errors between two pieces of customer information provided.

Get the practice essentials for your Civil Service error checking test preparation and practice a variety of number checking tests, word checking tests and spelling & grammar tests similar to the Civil Service assessments.

7. Civil Service Casework Skills Test

What is the Civil Service casework skills test?

The Civil Service casework skills test assesses your abilities and skills in relation to roles in caseworking. It measures your ability to process information and analyse situations, make decisions, attention to details, and ability to work under pressure.

What happens in a Civil Service casework skills test?

The test is made up of three parts:

  1. Part One – You will be given a scenario along with a range of related background information and a number of statements related to the scenario. Based on the information provided, you are to choose for each statement if it is, ‘true’, ‘false’, or ‘cannot say’.
  1. Part Two – You are to review 6 workplace scenarios in a casework setting and provide an effectiveness rating for each of the 4 actions provided along with the scenarios. Some of these scenarios are presented as short videos or in text formats.
  1. Part Three – You will be provided with case information and you are required to find errors between two pieces of information, or input the required information accurately within 10 minutes. 

Practice with the essentials to enhance your preparation for your Civil Service tests and practice over 1,900+ unique assessment questions and fast track your results with worked solutions, progress tracking and reports on a variety of assessment tools.

Once you have successfully passed the Civil Service online tests, you will be invited to  the Civil Service video interview.

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Civil Service Video Interview

What is the Civil Service video interview?

In the Civil Service video interview, you are typically given a set amount of time to answer a series of pre-recorded questions. There is an allotted time for each response and you may be given one or two attempts before submitting each answer.

How long is the Civil Service video interview?

The Civil Service video interview consists of 9 questions which are a mix of behavioural and competency-based questions and takes about 25 minutes

The video interview may also include Civil Service strength based questions, which will focus on 8 key strengths. These are:

Adaptability and flexibilityEnabling people’s potentialTeam working and inclusionMaking positive change
Keen to learn and developBuilding respectful relationships ResilienceTaking ownership and making decisions

Discover more about the Civil Service video interview with our quick 1 minute video below!

What is a Video Interview? #shorts

6 Top tips to ace the Civil Service video interview

Check out the following 6 tips which will help you ace your Civil Service interview:

  1. Consider Civil Service’s strengths – these 8 strengths serve as a criteria for you to meet. Use these to influence how you construct your answers and influence the examples you draw upon.
  2. Check your external devices, such as microphone, webcam, etc. Check these are working correctly before you begin!
  1. Practice recording yourself while answering questions until you feel confident before you take the actual interview.
  1. Make a list of the situations where you showed leadership, teamwork, decision-making, etc., and keep them in front of you as notes. 
  1. Use the STAR+R method (i.e., the Situation, the Task, the Action, the Result and Reflect on the experience) technique where possible when answering the behavioural questions.
  1. Plan your answers according to the time limit. Ensure you give a good answer within the time given and do not close your answer abruptly.

Take a quick look at our quick video below for even more tips to ace your Civil Service video interview:

Epic Video Interview Tips and Tricks #shorts

Prepare for your Civil Service strengths and competency-based interview questions with our 60 unique video interview sets used across top industries on our practice video interviewing platform.

Civil Service video interview questions

The next step of the Civil Service recruitment process is the Civil Service assessment centre.

Keep reading to find out how to ace these assessments.

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Civil Service Assessment Centre

What is the Civil Service assessment centre?

The Civil Service assessment centre is a two-day event wherein you will be assessed on your behaviours. It is used to assess your skills such as, decision making, problem solving, written skills, and other personal traits in a real-life work environment.

What will the Civil Service assessment centre involve?

The exercises that you might come across at a Civil Service assessment centre are:

Let us discuss these Civil Service assessment centre exercises in detail. Starting with Civil Service in-tray exercises.

Civil Service In-tray Exercises

What is the Civil Service in-tray exercise?

The Civil Service in-tray exercise is an assessment of a real work scenario used in the selection process for certain job roles in the Civil Service.

Good to know: The exercise is designed to provide the Civil Service with an understanding of your work style and how you handle tasks.

What happens in the Civil Service in-tray exercise?

During the Civil Service in-tray exercise, you will be asked to treat the in-tray exercise as a role-playing scenario. You will be provided with several documents, such as emails, letters, memos and reports, to review and respond to within a specified time frame.

How to ace the Civil Service in-tray exercise

  1. Prepare for the types of tasks: Get yourself ready for the types of tasks you may face during the in-tray exercise and prepare yourself to handle them effectively.
  1. Sharpen your decision-making skills: Make sure to practise making calculated decisions under pressure, as the exercise is designed to test your ability to make quick decisions. 
  1. Communicate effectively: Strong communication skills are very important in a Civil Service in-tray exercise, so make sure to practise writing clear and concise emails, memos, letters etc.

We offer practice in-tray exercises on our website to help you prepare for the recruitment process. Get a head start on your Civil Service in-tray exercise preparation with GF.

Keep reading to find out about the next assessment, the Civil Service group exercise.

Civil Service Group Exercises

What is the Civil Service group exercise?

The Civil Service group exercise contains group interactions and team tasks, which assesses your ability to collaborate and make decisions with others. While this assessment progresses, you will be evaluated individually, but also as a part of the team.

6 Top Tips to Pass the Civil Service Group Exercise

  1. Make yourself heard. During a group exercise, you are expected to contribute and share ideas with others. So, do not be afraid to speak up, but so in a manner that avoids talking over others. 
  1. Keep a friendly and assertive tone of voice throughout. This is to ensure you are not being aggressive with your points as you are being assessed on your behaviours by the recruiters during the exercise.
  1. Listen and appreciate the points made by your teammates. Work together with your team to make everyone’s point valid and build on ideas.
  1. Ask your teammates for their thoughts and build on their ideas. Remember, ‘no one is an island of knowledge.’ Ask others for their thoughts and work together to come up with a solution.
  1. Remember the names of everyone present in your group. This may not seem as important, however this shows your recruiter how attentive you are to details.
  1. Bring quiet individuals into the conversation, to allow them to speak up. Giving everyone an opportunity to talk also gives the team a higher chance in coming up with the best solution.

The above-mentioned tips will make the employers notice you, show them your team player skills and help them make a better decision.

Don’t forget to also check out our video on Civil Service group exercises below!

Assessment Centre Group Exercises | How to Pass, with Example Task & Virtual Assessment Day Tips

Civil Service Written Exercises

What is the Civil Service written assessment?

Civil Service written exercises are one section of the Civil Service assessment centre that you may be asked to take. They assess your writing skills, spelling, grammar, comprehension, as well as your ability to problem solve on your feet, all in a given time frame.

Top 5 tips to Ace Your Civil Service Written Exercises

  1. Practice is crucial to your success. Make sure to practice mock written exercises to develop your own method before your assessment day and increase your chances. 
  1. Read the instructions very carefully before you begin, to ensure you understand the assignment or case study given to you.
  1. Prioritise. Prioritisation is very important to do well in this exercise. Give more time and finish the exercises first which seem most important.
  1. Manage your time. As these exercises are time based, you need to divide your time for different tasks. This will help you finish in time as your recruiter also measures your time management skills.
  1. Consider the Civil Service values when approaching the task. This will help you properly align your answers to the Civil Service’s values.

Get ahead for your Civil Service written exercise with our practice written exercises designed in-house by our team to help you develop your confidence levels and discover how you can go further with full example assessor marking guides.

After the written exercises, you may be expected to prepare a Civil Service presentation. Let’s know about this in detail. 

Civil Service Presentation

What is the Civil Service presentation?

At the end of the Civil Service assessment centre, you may be required to prepare a presentation on a particular topic. You are required to compile all the information that you have in a short presentation effectively. 

Discussing the main points in any presentation should be your main focus. The presented points should carry some weight and should be convincing.

Top 5 tips to ace the Civil Service presentation exercises

Below are our 5 top tips that can help you ace the Civil Service presentation exercises in your assessment centre:

  1. Practice and improve your delivery to boost your confidence in your presentation. Get feedback from your friends or family to improve how you communicate ideas.
  1. Time yourself and ensure your delivery is on track: Use your phone to record and time yourself giving the presentation during your practice.
  1. Make sure your presentation is accurate and informative once you are provided with the topic and candidate brief.
  1. Act confident and professional: Be positive throughout the presentation and convey confidence and professionalism. 
  1. Prepare your slides: Try to work with your slides by making them simple and unique with pictures and flowcharts. 

After you have aced the assessment centre, you will be invited for the Civil Service panel interviews, which is the final stage of recruitment process.

Civil Service Panel Interview

What is the Civil Service panel interview?

During the Civil Service panel interview, candidates will be expected to respond to several strength-based, behavioural and knowledge-based questions asked by the managers and officials from within the Civil Service of the job that you’ve applied to. 

Good to know: By thoroughly preparing and showcasing your knowledge, you can increase your chances of impressing the interviewer and demonstrating that you are a strong fit for the position.

How to ace a Civil Service interview

Here are 5 key tips to consider before your interview:

  1. Review the job description: Carefully read the job description and make note of the key skills, qualifications, and knowledge areas required for the position. 
  1. Research the company: Understanding the company’s goals and values will allow you to understand how your expertise fits with their needs.
  1. Revise your resume and past experiences: Be prepared to discuss your previous experiences, projects, and accomplishments related to the job. 
  1. Stay calm and confident: Maintain a confident and composed demeanour during the interview, even if you encounter questions that challenge your knowledge.
  1. Ask questions during the interview: Demonstrate your curiosity and engagement by asking thoughtful questions related to the company, industry, or specific projects. 

Take a break and watch this video below to find out examples of questions to ask during your Civil Service interview:

5 Best Questions to Ask in a Job Interview #shorts

How to answer Civil Service interview questions?

When answering Civil Service job interview questions, remember to use the STAR+R technique, i.e., the situation, the task at hand, the actions you took, the result of your actions and reflect on what you’ve learned from the experience.


Question: Describe a situation where you had to work collaboratively as part of a team.

Tip to answer: Remember, when using the STAR+R method, focus on providing specific examples, emphasising your actions and problem-solving skills, and highlighting the positive outcomes or results of your efforts.

Good answer

  • Situation: During a cross-functional project, my team was tasked with developing a new marketing campaign.
  • Task: The success of the project relied on effective collaboration among team members from different departments.
  • Action: I initiated regular team meetings to ensure open communication, foster collaboration, and clarify roles and responsibilities. I actively listened to everyone’s ideas and encouraged participation. I also suggested using a project management tool to streamline our workflow and improve coordination.
  • Result: Through our collaborative efforts, we achieved a highly successful marketing campaign that surpassed the set targets.
  • Reflect: The project’s success was attributed to the collective skills and contributions of the team members, and it created a positive and productive work environment.

Question 2: Tell me about a time when you had to take initiative to solve a problem at work.

Tip to answer: Choose an example of a situation you encountered that properly demonstrates your ability to be flexible and logical while solving problems. 

Good answer

  • Situation: In my previous role as a project coordinator, we encountered a significant delay in receiving essential materials for a critical project.
  • Task: The project timeline was at risk, and I realised that waiting for the materials would jeopardise the project’s success. I knew I had to take action.
  • Action: I proactively contacted alternative suppliers and researched local vendors who could provide the materials within our timeframe. After comparing options and negotiating prices, I presented my findings to the project manager and recommended a new supplier.
  • Result: Thanks to my initiative, we were able to switch suppliers quickly and minimise the delay. The project continued smoothly, and we successfully met the deadline while maintaining the quality of our deliverables.
  • Reflect: Being able to take the initiative and adapt to changes was crucial in being able to complete the project on time. I understand that it is important to be flexible, and I am always willing to adapt to new changes.

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Once you have passed the assessments, you will be kept in touch with. You can also request for feedback or access test feedback on your account on Civil Service jobs.

Well done for making it this far! With this you are now fully prepared for your Civil Service application, good luck!

Before you go, let’s check out some of the current and upcoming graduate schemes you can apply for within the Civil Service.

Civil Service Graduate Schemes

The UK government offers internships, graduate programs and apprenticeships to train and educate young minds. 

Students have the option to learn more about the Civil Service and earn at the same time through different Civil Service graduate schemes. This include:

What are these programmes? Let’s find out.

  1. Civil Service Fast Stream
  2. Civil Service Fast Track Apprenticeship Programme
  3. Civil Service Summer Diversity Internship Programme
  4. Civil Service Early Diversity Internship Programme

Civil Service Fast Stream

Civil Service fast stream is an accelerated leadership development programme that enables talented graduates who possess certain skills and knowledge to get into the Civil Service early.

Unlike other graduate schemes, you have a huge range of options to choose from (15 schemes to be exact), regardless of the degree background you have. 

Each scheme lasts from 2 to 4 years, many of which lead to a professional qualification at completion. Check out the schemes below:

CommercialDigital, Data, Technology & CyberDiplomatic and Development
Diplomatic and Development EconomicsFinanceScience and Engineering
Generalist – Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM)Government Economics ServiceGovernment Operational Research Service
Government Social ResearchGovernment Statistical ServiceHouses of Parliament
Human ResourcesProject DeliveryProperty

Civil Service fast stream requirements

  • You must be authorised to work in the UK
  • You need, or expect to have, a 2:1 or higher in any degree subject including degree apprenticeships
  • Existing civil servants can apply without a degree

Application deadlines: The Civil Service fast stream applications are currently closed. You can follow up on the official website to know when it is open for application entry.

Civil Service Fast Track Apprenticeship Programme

An apprenticeship puts you in a paid position whilst allowing you to study for professional accreditation. Once you complete your apprenticeship you will have all the relevant knowledge to progress in your chosen field.

Civil Service fast track requirements

  • Ensure you meet the Civil Service nationality rules
  • You must be 16 years and above

Summer Diversity Internship Programme

The Civil Service summer diversity internship programme is a two-month paid internship programme, with a pay of £300 to £350 per week. Being a part of this programme can give your career a head-start in the Civil Service. 

The SDIP provides eligibility for the fast pass, which is a quicker route to fast stream selection. If you intern in the SDIP, and apply for the Civil Service the next year you’ll walk past the initial online assessment stages. 

The application form for the Civil Service summer diversity internship programme releases in November every year. So apply early around this time!

Early Diversity Internship Programme

Early diversity internship programme is a one-week internship programme offered by the government, for the first-year graduates. Similar to the SDIP, the EDIP is a 5-day paid placement within a government department that will give you insight and understanding of how that department works. 

It is also a great way to gain experience before applying for the Summer diversity internship programme. 

Civil Service early diversity eligibility criteria 

  • You’re in your final 2 years at university with a 2:2 or higher in any degree subject (expected or awarded).
  • You meet the diversity requirements (ethnic minority, socially or economically disadvantaged or have a disability). Click the link down below to check if you are eligible.
  • Right to work in the UK.

So, here’s all the information that you need to get into Civil Service. Gain even more insights into the Civil Service recruitment process with our quick FAQs section below.

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Civil Service Application Process FAQs

What are the nationality requirements?

The Civil Service is open to you if you are a national of the UK or own dual nationality including the UK. Also, a large number of the job roles are open to Commonwealth citizens and nationals of any of the member states of the European Economic Area (EEA).

How long does the online assessment test take?

The Civil Service Online Tests are not timed. However, depending on a candidate, they usually spend about 15 – 45 minutes on an assessment.

How long before I know if I’ve been successful?

The timescale depends on a variety of factors, such as the number and type of schemes you have applied for.

What is a good score on the Civil service test?

The Civil Service roles are usually highly competitive, therefore a score of about 70% and above will be a good score to help you through to the next round of assessment.

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Numerical Reasoning Test: C  

Verbal Reasoning test: B