One of the things that stuck out to me during the interview process is that it is completely anonymous. Even though the process has changed slightly since I went through it myself, but I know from previously acting as the recruitment SPOC for TSP for the North East, that the video interview stage is assessed by an independent company rather than HMRC assessors. In terms of the online tests, the numerical and grammatical tests are of course a simple right or wrong, but the situational judgement test is automatically marked so there is no direct intervention by any individual with access to your personal information.
Once I had made it to the assessment centre, I was a little apprehensive, however, my experience at HMRC was astounding. The whole process was kept ‘blind’ and the assessors knew nothing about me except my name which kept it all incredibly fair. We even had to have meals at opposite end of the rooms to avoid any accidental mixing. I personally found this very comforting, because I knew from talking to the other candidates that there were a number from HMRC as well as a few who had been at an assessment centre before, so I initially felt I would be at a disadvantage. In comparison, at another assessment centre for a different organisation, I found myself in a room full of people from that company, along with the assessors, all openly talking about what role they had done previously. Unsurprisingly, I didn’t get a look in for that job!
But as well as the anonymity, none of the tasks are tax related and were designed to test my analytical, communication and leadership skills and overall performance. So, all in all, even without knowing whether I was successful or not, I left the assessment centre feeling confident and at ease that I had at least had a fair shot, the complete opposite to how I felt regarding my other experience. In the end, I did successfully join the TSP programme and I would thoroughly recommend it.