The WorkKeys Assessment is a standardized testing program designed by ACT, the same organization that tests high school students for college aptitude. Employers use the test to screen job applicants and help make promotion decisions. Completion of the applied mathematics, reading for information and locating information portions is required to earn the ACT National Career Readiness Certificate, which provides an additional marketable credential. More than 2.3 million certificates have been issued since the program's creation in 2006.
The five-level applied mathematics test measures your skill at calculating averages, measurements, monetary units, percentages and time conversions. Many questions combine multiple applications. For example, you may have to calculate how many units a business can produce, purchase or sell over a certain period.
Reading for Information
Employees must often interpret vague or conflicting instructions to carry out tasks. This abstract-reasoning ability is a key focus of the test's reading for information section, which also measures your vocabulary skills and aptitude for identifying ideas that aren't readily apparent in company documents. For example, one 2008 practice question presents a memo about missing tools and asks who is responsible for reporting the problem.
Comparing, summarizing and analyzing details from charts, maps, tables and other workplace graphics is the objective of the locating information test. Like other WorkKeys assessments, this test's four levels grow progressively more difficult. For example, you might be asked to complete the missing area in a pie chart or draw conclusions about product sales based on five different graphs.
Ralph Heibutzki's articles have appeared in the "All Music Guide," "Goldmine," "Guitar Player" and "Vintage Guitar." He is also the author of "Unfinished Business: The Life & Times Of Danny Gatton," and holds a journalism degree from Michigan State University.