Situational Judgement Test



The Challenge

To develop a quick and easy-to-administer method of checking applicants’ suitability to work in one of Esso’s many petrol station shops.

The Solution:

We designed a situational judgement test (SJT) that could be administered and scored by any shop manager up and down the land. The test is quick to complete and easy to score. It presents candidates with typical situations that they might encounter as sales assistants and asks them to consider and rate the appropriateness of different responses to each situation. The situations and responses had been carefully devised from interviews with managers and draft versions of the SJT were tested on existing staff. The cut-off score has been set so that it is very unlikely that a good person will be rejected by the test. ExxonMobil are taking great care to collect data on the test for its long-term evaluation.


The SJT gives managers a quick indication of whether or not an applicant should be interviewed. Following its successful launch in the UK, the SJT is being piloted in several European countries. The SJT was designed and handed over for a one-off fee that compared extremely favourably with the alternative of paying a per-administration fee.

“We had a desire to create a more efficient recruitment process for sales advisors and help store managers identify the right competencies in candidates that would drive our business forward. Having researched the market place we soon discovered the costs involved in using an off the shelf product were prohibitive. Designing our own SJT has ensured not only do we have a bespoke product for our business but we were able to keep the cost of the project to a one off fee and not be involved in licences or cost per test. We are collating the data to ensure we can demonstrate its validity. Store managers were on the whole positive and we hope they will be convinced by the results”
Exxon Mobil

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