This article will provide you with a step-by-step 2021 guide with the best tips to successfully pass the HSBC online assessment tests first time!

Getting a job at HSBC is not easy. But if you prepare in the right way, you can SIGNIFICANTLY increase your chances of success. Our 2021 Definitive Guide to the HSBC candidate assessment tests will tell you how. Read insider tips, take practice tests and try assessment center exercises created by our team of top organisational psychologists and recruiters – today.

HSBC is a British-Hong Kong multinational banking and financial services holding company headquartered in London; it is the world’s seventh largest bank by total assets and the largest in Europe. It is one of the top destinations for graduates and professionals who dream of a career in banking sector; HSBC receive tens of thousands of applications for just a very limited number of openings each year.

In order to be able to screen through all applications, HSBC use online aptitude tests to sift through more than 60% of candidates based on their results. If you want to stand a chance, you need to make sure to perform your best at every single stage of the recruitment process.

These are the four steps of the HSBC job application process:

  1. HSBC Online job application
  2. HSBC Online assessment – aptitude tests
  3. HSBC First-round interview
  4. HSBC Assessment Centre/Super Day

How to Succeed in HSBC Online Assessments and Interviews

GF’s Immersive HSBC Guide on You Tube

1. HSBC Online Job Application

The first stage of the recruitment process is to complete the application form which will include four capability questions, focusing on your reasons for joining and interest in the financial services industry – particularly HSBC.

Tip: The answers to these questions will be the first point of reference for any future interview, so remember to do a lot of research about the company and the specific role – and then try to match it with your personal skills and experiences.


  • Please describe your motivations for working in this business area at HSBC. Briefly discuss your skills that make you an ideal candidate.

Tip: Apply as early as possible as some applications are reviewed on a rolling basis. Check your email frequently in case HSBC’s HR department should require any clarification or further details.

2. HSBC Online Assessment – Aptitude Tests

HSBC aptitude tests will include:

  • situational judgement test
  • inductive reasoning test

HSBC Situational Judgement test

HSBC Situational Judgement Test examines you on your main characteristics and your skills in dealing with unknown life situations you are likely to encounter when working for HSBC. You will need to use your common sense to identify the courses of actions that are most desirable.

The main difficulty in Situational Judgement Tests comes from the fact that all answers might seem to be good ideas. They will all have some good qualities– so you need to differentiate between which ones are really key.

HSBC-style Situational Judgement Test Example

HSBC inductive reasoning test

  • HSBC inductive reasoning test, often referred to as a diagrammatic or logical reasoning test, will expose you to 5 diagrams with varying shapes and ask you to identify the right pattern and indicate what comes next in the sequence.
  • What makes the HSBC inductive reasoning test difficult is that there is no limit to how abstract these patterns and trends can be. They will usually evolve around the size, arrangement, movements and colours of two and three-dimensional shapes.

Tip: Some examples will involve varying patterns from across the categories mentioned above.

  • The only way you can prepare for the inductive reasoning test is to practice the sample questions. By doing so, you will familiarise yourself with some of the most common questions types, become more comfortable and get used to thinking under time pressure.
  • If you are looking for a HSBC-style inductive reasoning test with answers, worked-solutions and professional score reports including personalised tips based on your performance, then Graduates First has it covered.
  • Learn more about inductive reasoning tests.

HSBC-style Inductive Reasoning Test Example

In the example above you will have ONLY around 45 seconds to notice that:

  • the arrow moves around the diagram
  • shapes change from triangle to circle to square and
  • the long line is either horizontal or vertical, and then to find the right answer! There is a lot of time pressure which often leaves candidates anxious and harms their performance.

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

For more FREE QUESTIONS similar to HSBC aptitude testsregister with Graduates Firstand take your FREE inductive reasoning test now!

3. HSBC First-round Interview

The next stage of the recruitment process is a first-round job interview which will usually take the form of a HSBC telephone interview. You will be assessed on your compatibility with bank values and your general skills and motivations.

HSBC telephone interview tip: Find a quiet space where you will not be disturbed. Leave a note in sight, to remind yourself of the acronym STAR – Situation, Task, Action and Result. Every time you answer a question, make sure to talk precisely about each of these points. Also, make sure there is a logical flow between situations you describe under S, T, A, R.

  • Your interview will be competency based (CBI), and so be prepared to give examples of when you have demonstrated certain skills: determination, teamwork, leadership skills, etc. Think about the projects you have previously worked on, including those from your professional experiences, education, passions, sports or personal experiences.

HSBC competency-based interview tip: Remember that it is imperative that you refer to a variety of experiences from different areas of your life (professional, personal, community, etc), so do not get stuck on one project you previously worked, and use it as an example in all of your answers. Your goal here is to present your ability to act in different circumstances. Prepare a couple of examples before the interview and sketch them using the STAR model.

Want to know what questions could come up in your interview? Graduates First has developed a proprietary tool that helps identifying the questions that are likely to come up in your interview: the Question Identifier Tool (QIT). The tool is included in our assessment practice packages.

3. HSBC Assessment Centre/Super Day

The last stage of the HSBC recruitment process is either a half-day Assessment Centre or Super Day, in which you will be assessed by senior members of the relevant business areas across a variety of exercises, and both motivational and business interviews, which may take the form of:

  • HSBC Group Exercise

In this exercise, you will be assessed on your ability to communicate and reach decisions as part of a team. Throughout this task you will be observed by HSBC, so make sure you do everything you can to demonstrate your strengths: share and argue for your ideas, but also be open to build on somebody else’s input and develop on their points; try your best to persuade others to your opinions and also ask though-provoking questions. Above all – stay calm and speak in a confident and clear manner.

Learn more about the Group Exercise

  • HSBC Written Exercise

In this exercise, you will be asked to prepare a response to a previously unseen case study problem presented in the candidate brief given to you. The best way to approach this task is to skim through all of the information and to plan your response quickly; do not start answering unless you already have a clear idea. Make sure to check your spelling and watch the time – in many cases it might be better to miss one or two arguments in order to finish the task on time.

Learn more about Written Exercise.

  • HSBC Presentation Exercises

This exercise will mainly test your ability to communicate your ideas. Your assessors will be looking at your body language and tone to see how you would cope with: delivering professional presentations, taking part in group discussions and explaining your opinions.

Presentation exercise tip: It is important that you stand straight, make regular eye contact with everyone in the audience and do not speak too fast.

Learn more about Presentation Exercises

Do you want to pass your HSBC assessments first time? Sign up for tools offered by Graduates First, the only aptitude practice test experts that provide tests to over 70 UK universities and their students, and also across Asia and continental Europe.Go to Graduates First now and select from the range of products we offer at no risk. We offer a comprehensive premium package with a full set of assessment tools for job candidates (numerical, logical, verbal reasoning, situational judgment tests, assessment centre exercises and more). Buy with peace of mind and without commitment to a full 100% money back guarantee.

Correct answers to example questions:

Inductive reasoning test: C