SHL Test – Win the Assessment Test with 3-Step Success Strategy and SHL Practice Tests

Last updated 10/2020

Hey, welcome to our actionable SHL guide. I’m Michael, PrepTerminal’s SHL expert. I am here to help you with any questions or concerns you may have about the SHL test. Feel free to contact me at

If you are on the hunt for a job, the last thing you want is to miss out on an opportunity simply because you fail the SHL test. Unfortunately, this scenario is far too common. SHL tests are hard, with an average passing rate of less than 30%. In fact, an alarming 74% of applicants fail the SHL assessments.

That’s why our team of psychometric test experts at PrepTerminal have keenly devised a 3-step success strategy to help you be in the top percentage that passes the SHL test:

  1. Take SHL practice questions to assess your level
  2. Get SHL actionable strategies and sneaky problem-solving methodologies
  3. Take full practice tests resembling the real SHL exam with detailed answer explanations

What are SHL Tests?

SHL assessments are psychometric tests which are used by employers to evaluate and compare the abilities of job candidates. SHL tests are made available to employers for use for the screening of applicants at any job level, from entry-level administration to senior executive roles. They’re also used for the development of existing staff to test readiness for promotions and job progression.

  • Are a measure of an individual’s maximum ability in a given competency.
  • Include subjects such as numerical, verbal, inductive reasoning, diagrammatic reasoning, personality questionnaires, and motivation questionnaires.
  • Are administered online or on paper.
  • Can be delivered in one or two stages.
  • Are deployed in over 150 countries and in over 30 languages.

About the SHL assessment process

SHL Assessment Tests are delivered either online (remotely) or in person (in an assessment center). Test-takers may be asked to complete their specific SHL test in one stage or in two stages. Each individual company determines whether they wish to administer the test in one or two stages.

If the test-taker is asked to take the exam in one stage alone, they will be required to either; complete the test remotely or in an assessment center. In both scenarios, the outcomes may not be entirely desirable. As, if all applicants are required to complete the test remotely, cheating may take place. Alternatively, if all applicants need to sit the test in the assessment center the company administering the test may need to invest a lot of time and resources into the test-taking process.

SHL Verify Tests are common two-stage SHL assessments. Candidates asked to complete a SHL Verify Test are first sent a remote version of the SHL test via email. Candidates that score well enough on this initial stage of the exam will then be asked to complete a proctored test (in an assessment center), to confirm the validity of their results.

What Is a Good SHL Test Score?

Once the candidate has completed both sections of their SHL test, the company administering the test will be given a report, which will outline the candidate’s performance. The performance of the candidate is given as a percentile ranking.

A percentile ranking places the candidate against all other test-takers in a particular ‘norm group’ – which will vary according to the industry and job role applied for. The ‘norm group’ can also be thought of as a ‘comparison group’. A candidate’s test score is compared to the ‘norm group’ to provide the test-administrator with an idea of how the candidate performed in relation to other test-takers. Thus, it is important to remember that your test results will need to be better than the majority of the other job candidates in order to be competitive.

Generally speaking, a candidate’s results are given to the potential employer and are not made available to the candidate.

PrepTerminal’s SHL Test Prep – The 3-Step Success Strategy to Master the Assessment Test

You don’t need to have any expert knowledge in a particular field or be academically brilliant to do well at the SHL test. Instead, what you do need is a proven, actionable plan. Our team at PrepTerminal has developed a verified 3-step success strategy to help you maximize your test score and pass the SHL exam.

Step #1 – Take our SHL Practice Tests Online (Diagnostic Tests)

We have developed a series of diagnostic tests to assess your initial test level. We offer you 6 specialized tests – each of which has a specific focus. Each test gives you the opportunity to discover which question types come easily to you and which ones need further improvement. This will help you better understand which types of questions you’ll need to focus on practicing.

In each of our specialist diagnostic SHL tests we provide you with focused question types – which address the specific topic of the test – to give you the chance to assess your level of exam readiness. Furthermore, in each test we provide you sample questions with clear answer explanations.

Each of these test topics are addressed below in detail.

SHL Numerical Reasoning Tests

These tests assess a candidate’s capability with numerical, statistical, financial and graphical data, and tests their ability to make deductions based on that data. In this test, you will need to interpret numerical data shown in graphs and tables and answer questions in relation to this data. The type of numerical operations covered will be division, multiplication, fractions, percentages increases and decreases, and ratios. In each question, you are generally given several options to choose from. Only one of the options is right in each question. Candidates are typically allowed to use a sheet of paper for rough workings and/or a calculator. However, not all tests permit the use of a calculator.
The tests involve 18 questions and usually last 17-25 minutes, depending on job level.

SHL Verbal Reasoning Tests

These tests gauge a candidate’s ability to understand and form logical deductions based on verbal or written data. Our SHL verbal reasoning test practice gives SHL candidates an opportunity to practice and strengthen their score against the competition. During the SHL verbal reasoning test, you will be presented with a text or paragraph accompanied by a short statement relating to the text. You will need to decide, based on the text, if the statement is true, false, or cannot say. The answers are based on specific premises and assumptions which can be gathered from the text.
The tests involve 30 questions and usually last 17-19 minutes.

SHL Inductive Reasoning Tests

These tests assess a candidate’s ability to solve problems on their feet and deal with unfamiliar information. Abstract questions are posed to the candidate, requiring a degree of skill in conceptual and analytical thought. Test takers should draw inferences and identify relationships between concepts.
The tests involve 24 questions and last 25 minutes.

SHL Mechanical Reasoning Tests

These tests measure a candidate’s understanding of basic mechanical and physical principles, and the application of these principles to devices such as pulleys, gears, and levers.
The test involves 15 questions and lasts 10 minutes.

SHL Reading Comprehension Tests

These tests measure your ability to comprehend written sources and extract relevant information to make relevant judgments based on this information.

SHL Deductive Reasoning Tests

These measure a candidate’s ability to draw logical conclusions based on a given premise. The questions contain premises that establish logical constraints, requiring the candidate to select a statement that is consistent or relative to the premise.

SHL Occupational Personality Questionnaire

OPQ test strives to measure the way a candidate relates to others, solves problems and handles their feelings and emotions. This is intended to predict the workplace conduct of a candidate for a specific work role.

The OPQ test is designed to evaluate 32 personality traits of a potential employee. Reports are provided to the hiring company, for evaluation and analysis of the candidate. The occupational personality questionnaire test is built upon the concept of the Big Five Personality Traits: Openness, Conscientiousness, Extraversion, Agreeableness, Neuroticism.

The OPQ measures 32 personality traits, spread across 7 sub-categories within 3 main categories: Relationships with People, Thinking Style and Feelings and Emotions.

Step #2 – How to beat the SHL test – Actionable Strategies and Sneaky Problem Solving Methodologies

After you have determined which SHL questions types are more difficult for you, we’ll personalize your practice so you can concentrate on strengthening your weak areas. Here you’ll learn actionable strategies created to help you tackle even the most challenging SHL questions.

We are so confident that you will love our prep SHL course material that we are offering you a limited-time opportunity to try the first two modules of our SHL prep course for FREE. Take a look at our sneaky SHL problem-solving strategies, at absolutely no cost

The main strategies we’ll teach you:

Develop methodologies to save time

Time plays a significant role in most SHL tests. As the majority of SHL tests come with a tight time-limit, you’ll need to learn ways to save time while maintaining a high level of accuracy. We will teach you how to shave precious minutes off your test-taking time. Once you learn our tricks and tips, you’ll know how to pace yourself to achieve your optimal score result.


Correct Answer: B

The rules are as follows:

The number of shaded shapes always corresponds to the same number of shaded shapes in the initial image, the placement of these shapes are irrelevant.

For the resulting image, every odd-sided shape becomes even-sided, and every even-sided shape becomes odd-sided. So if it’s a square, it becomes a triangle or other shape with an odd number of sides, and if it’s a triangle, it would become a square or other even-sided shape.


Learn about frequent mistakes

We will give you detailed answer explanations for all the SHL question types, highlighting the most frequent errors people make. By viewing sample questions with thorough descriptions on how to answer even the most complex problems accurately, you’ll learn how to fix and avoid typical mistakes. Learn from your errors and boost your test-taking score.

Tina bought some raw materials for a total of $800. After making them into 320 bracelets, she sold them all for $2400 total. She made __?__ profit for every bracelet.
  • A. $7.50
  • B. $2.50
  • C. $5.50
  • D. $5.00
  • E. $6.00


Correct Answer: D


  • Take note of what is being asked (required)
    • Profit per bracelet
  • Subtract the original price from the selling price to get the total profit.
    • 2400 – 800 = 1600
  • To get the profit per bracelet, divide the total profit by the number of bracelets.
    • 1600 ÷ 320 = 5


Practice on mock tests that mimic the real SHL test experience

Our sample SHL questions give you an accurate picture of what you will be presented with on the actual day of the test. The questions featured in our prep course mimic the questions on the real exam. Gain familiarity with all SHL question types through our prep course and ward off any unwanted surprises.

If the first two statements are true, so the third statement is?
  1. Claire is sleeping in the arm chair behind Jason.
  2. Jason is sleeping in the arm chair behind Brian.
  3. Brian is sleeping in the arm chair behind Claire.
  • True
  • False
  • Uncertain


Correct Answer: B


The first two statements, Brian is sitting in front of both Jason and Claire, so the third statement is FALSE.


Step #3. Full-length Sample Tests with Detailed Answer Explanations

The last step involves solidifying your knowledge by putting all the strategies you’ve learned into practice on actual SHL sample tests. On completing a sample test, you’ll look over all of the test questions, including the questions you got right. Your score report will demonstrate the extent of your progress.

If you are not entirely satisfied with the results, you are achieving, and if there are questions you still want to master, you’ll continue to practice until your score is excellent.

Once you are pleased with your score, you will be calm, knowing that your SHL test-taking skills are razor-sharp. You can then take the real SHL test with confidence and conviction.

*Note: SHL and other trademarks are the property of their respective trademark holders. None of the trademark holders are affiliated with PrepTerminal or this website.


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